CONTEMPORARY ARCHITECTURE BUILDINGS IN BARCELONA
Are you a contemporary architecture fan? Have you heard that top contemporary architects have been building a new Barcelona these last years and don’t want to miss them? Are you ready to go beyond the Gaudi sites and discover what’s new in the local architecture scene? Or maybe are you interested in urban development and how Barcelona is integrating sustainability values in its districts and architectural projects?
From the Olympic Games in 1992, Barcelona has been inviting world famous architects to embellish the city and equip it with modern facilities, contributing to create a fascinating modern and contemporary landscape in the city… But their works aren’t usually too centrally located: you need to go out of the beaten track and do some research to find their locations. If you don’t have the time to do all this planning and want to take the most out of your short time in Barcelona but still see as much architecture as possible, then leave it in our hands!
If architecture is your passion and names such as Arata Isozaki, Jean Nouvel, Frank Gehry, Jacques Herzon, Miralles and Richard Rogers are definitely not strange to you, come with us exploring the latest architecture that is transforming Barcelona now, and discovering who are the Spanish emergent architecture promises! And if you are curious about sustainable architecture and urban planning, don’t miss our walking itinerary option.
WE HAVE TWO SUGGESTED ITINERARIES TO DISCOVER THE BARCELONA MODERN ARCHITECTURE:
Most sites are just seen from outside, except for the parks where we walk around them, and some buildings where access to the lobby is permitted.
This itinerary can be approached to discuss how sustainability has been taking into account when developing this area of the city, from the architectural and urban planning point of view.
While we recommend walking (plus one tramway ride) for this tour, it can be also done as a chauffeured tour if you prefer.
This always controversial giant turnabout concentrates the most amazing concentration of top-class Barcelona modern architecture: the spectacular AGBAR tower by Jean Nouvel – maybe one of the most famous buildings in Barcelona, the TNC (National Theater of Catalonia) by Ricardo Bofill and the Auditori by Rafael Moneo, plus the unusually shaped DHUB and the Encants vault.
@22 DISTRICT (POBLENOU)
This former industrial area has become the modern and contemporary architecture lab of the city. This bustling media business district combines the heritage of restored factories with high-tech new contemporary office buildings and a urban development focused in self-sustainability, as well as the integration of housing and services beside the economical activities. Discover the emerging local architects and the contemporary design c0ncept has been applied in a park by Jean Nouvel.
DIAGONAL MAR & FORUM OF CULTURES
The far end of the city was finally developed in 2004, with the excuse of organizing a big international event: the Forum of Cultures. The city received international architecture prizes for the Blue Building by contemporary architects Herzog & Demeuron, but other projects such as the Congress Center and the Diagonal Mar park are also worth seeing. You’ll also be surprised to see how trash processing facilities and power centrals have been successfully integrated in the project, rather than pushed to no man’s land.
This itinerary requires a driver, that will efficiently take you from one site to the next. There’ll be of course stops to get out and explore the sites, but the walking will be minimal.
If budget is an issue, taxis can be used but walking will be involved and we might not be able to cover the Gran Via area within 4 hours.
OLYMPIC VILLAGE, BARCELONETA & WATERFRONT
One of the first areas in town to be known for its contemporary architecture buildings after the 1992 Olympics (stands out the Fish sculpture by Frank Gehry), later additions have been incorporated to the list such as the Gas Natural headquarters by Miralles & Tagliabue, or the trendy W Hotel.
Modern and contemporary architecture mix up in this hill south of Barcelona: The 1992 Olympic facilities (Calatrava, Arata Isozaki…) connects with the area of the 1929 World Fair where you shouldn’t miss one of the fathers of contemporary architecture: Mies van der Rohe with his German Pavilion (reconstruction). Just a bit further, Richard Rogers completed the transformation of the old Las Arenas bullring into a modern shopping mall.
GRAN VIA 2
The construction of the second enclosure of the trade fair facilities has enabled the transformation of a working class neighborhood into a new business district, where you’ll find contemporary architecture buildings by renowned architects such as Toyo Ito, David Chipperfield and Richard Rogers again.
IS THIS TOUR RIGHT FOR YOU?
This tours have been created for people who has a strong interest in contemporary architecture and that are happy to devote a whole morning exploring the New Barcelona.
If you are traveling with kids, this tour is not really child friendly because they are likely to get bored (but we can make a break for them at the park playgrounds of the walking itinerary). Instead, teens and young adults that are considering an architecture or design career might find it interesting.
If you have walking issues, the walking itinerary will be too tough for you but it can be done with a driver if necessary too.
If you use a wheelchair, both itineraries are wheelchair-friendly.
If you’d rather spend a whole day touring, ask us to combine both itineraries in a full day tour.
TOUR AND BOOKING INFORMATION
* Site ticket costs are given as an orientation only, as they can change without notice. Discounts might apply for students and/or seniors.