Hospital Sant Pau, Barcelona

4.5 out of 5 stars 28 Reviews

St. Antoni Maria Claret, 167 93.488.20.78

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  • Hospital Sant Pau
    by smirnofforiginal
  • Hospital Sant Pau
    by smirnofforiginal
  • Hospital Sant Pau
    by smirnofforiginal
  • smirnofforiginal's Profile Photo

    Hospital De La Santa Creu I De Sant Pau

    by smirnofforiginal Updated May 29, 2014

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    Possibly the most elegant set of buildings (or rather city within a city) that can be seen in Barcelona and also possibly one of the least visited.

    Domenech i Montaner is responsible for the exsquisite architecture of Hospital ed la Santa i de Sant Pau. This is a World Heritage Site and when you see it you can, at once, understand why. There are 16 pavilions, each different but each exceptionally beautiful.

    When I first visited in 2008 although there were sections of the hospital that were closed and being renovated this was still a working hospital with ambulances whizzing in and out and doctors in white coats wandering from one building to the next. Now the hospital in its entirety has been transferred to the modern hospital at its rear and the entire site (which is large) is an official visitors centre. There are vast swathes that are off-limit as they have official uses, such as the UN library. However, you will not be disappointed by what you will see. It is nothing short of stunning!

    One of the wards (the Sant Rafael Pavilion) has been left so that visitors can get a chance to see what it would have been like to be a patient here. The ethos behind the buildings and the gardens was that patients should be considered holistically and that their mental wellbeing and rehabilitation was every bit as important as their physical - the idea that one could not help but to feel good/better when surrounded by some beauty. The plants and trees were also to purify the air, shelter the exposed areas from the wind. Medicinal plants, such as lavender, were also grown.The buildings were built so that natural light was cleverly used. To see the black, ugly, bulky block that is the hospital at the rear makes one wander how they could possibly build something so far removed! There is a kilometre of underground galleries that link one pavilion to another (each medical speciality was designated a different pavilion). The ceramic work and tiles are gorgeous but they also ensure cleanliness and good hygiene and the soft colours were chosen to be therapeutic.

    Inside the Sant Jordi Pavilion which was a patient examination room, there is an exhibition which shows all of the work that went into the huge restoration task (which is ongoing).
    If you are on the self-guided tour, besides the Sant Rafael Pavilion and the Sant Jordi Pavilion you may also go into and see parts of the outstanding Administration Pavilion.You will not be disappointed!

    To visit, the hospital should be approached by the main entrance.
    The self-guided tour is €8.

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    Hospital Sant Pau - Our conclusion.

    by Jerelis Updated Oct 17, 2012

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    At the main square of the hospital.

    Maybe the most amazing thing is that in spite of it being a very interesting touristic spot in town it is still running as an hospital today! Consistently with the requests made directly by the costumer, lot's of climate improvements have been made over the years. But they were done in such a way that they would leave the outside of the building untouched, thereby preserving its imposing and majestic appearance. Unfortunately, we arrived just after the last tour departed and couldn't go inside. So, check the tour times if you plan on going.

    Our conclusion was rather simple: this very interesting hospital compound is made up of several buildings and the architecture was truly amazing. Anyway, the outside of the Hospital is amazing and so is the church. And the University nearby is also quite interesting to visit. For us a true must visit.

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    Hospital de Sant Pau

    by Ines_ Written Jan 6, 2012

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    Hospital de Sant Pau was built between 1901 and 1930 and it is associated with another Hospital in the center of Barcelona which was built in the 15th century (where are now an art school and National Library of Catalonia)

    The Hospital has an amazing architecture, whose origins are explaned during a guided tour. You also pass through a beautiful church which is a part of the Hospital complex.

    Currently they are reconstructing the hospital so meetings of Mediterranean countries can be held there. Right now there is a tour (the once I took) named "Sant Pau under construction". I don't know if when the recovering of the building ends there will be the possibility of going on a guided tour. I hope so.

    Anyway, the outside of the Hospital is amazing and so is the church. And the University nearby is also quite interesting to visit.

    This is the site about guided tours
    http://www.santpau.es/patr_visites.asp

    And this one about the Hospital and activities happening there
    http://webs01.santpau.cat/portal/en/4/inicio

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  • Belsaita's Profile Photo

    A gem of "Modernisme"

    by Belsaita Updated Jun 22, 2011

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    The full name of this hospital is "Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau", but we usually call it simply "Sant Pau". You may find odd to visit a hospital just for tourism... but if you do it, you'll see is worth it! The complex is a masterpiece of the architect Lluís Domènech i Montaner, and in 1997, together with the Palau de la Música Catalana, it was declared World Heritage by UNESCO for its "singular architectural and artistic beauty".

    You'll see more pics at my travelogue: http://members.virtualtourist.com/m/i/97e0f/

    Update Jun 2011: currently the old hospital complex is still being restored, so virtually all the buildings are closed, as is the main central garden and other parts are under scaffolding. The main facade is already restored and you can access the church from the side entrance. In any case, as it's just a 10 minutes walk from Sagrada Familia, still is worth a visit, even if only for the exterior part.

    There are guided tours, from Monday to Sunday:
    English: 10.00 - 11:00 - 12:00 - 13:00
    Français: 10:30
    Castellano: 11:30
    Català: 12:30

    I did the guided tour a few weeks ago, you get inside one of the pavilions and they give very good explanations about the pace and its history. However, the most beautiful interior part is closed, and according our guide its restoration works will be not finished until 2013.


    Info office is open from 9:30 to 13:30, you can get your tickets and other info about the Modernista Route there.

    Pre-arranged visits can be organised for any time and day by phoning +34 933 177 652. Further information is available through the website www.rutadelmodernisme.com

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    Hospital of the Holy Cross and Saint Paul

    by Raimix Updated Feb 6, 2011

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    The city hospital was designed by Domenech I Montaner in 1902, it is a mix of Moors brick design and modern style, structure is adorned by ceramics. For me it was one of the most impressive modern trend buildings in Barcelona, despite of a long way here from very central part of Barcelona (let say, Rambla), it is worth visiting.

    Here are quite much green areas around instead of more constructions of hospital. I have read that most of corridors are made as undergrounds to safe green area around.

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  • littlesam1's Profile Photo

    Remembering Gaudi

    by littlesam1 Written Sep 17, 2009

    Looking at La Sagrada Familia from the grounds of Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau. You can see Gaudi's beautiful Basilica from the grounds of the hospital where he died after being run over by a street tram in 1926.

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    Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau

    by littlesam1 Written Sep 17, 2009
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    This is a beautiful hospital that looks very church like in structure. It was designed by the architect Domenech y Montaner and started in 1902 and fully completed in 1930. Here at this hospital just a few blocks from Sagrada Familia Antoni Gaudi died in 1926 after being run over by a tram. This was just a block away from our hotel also. I found it ironic and kind of chilling that you can stand on the grounds of the hospital where Gaudi died and see his Basilica just a few blocks down the street.

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  • Jerelis's Profile Photo

    Hospital Sant Pau - 26 Mudejar-style pavillions.

    by Jerelis Updated Apr 9, 2009

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    One of the many pavillions.

    Despite of being within viewing distance of La Sagrada Familia, or perhaps because of it, many people pass by Hospital de Sant Pau, a beautifully ornated building.

    Luis Domenech I Montaner began designing a new hospital in 1902. His innovative scheme consisted of 26 attractive Mudejar-style pavillions set in large gardens, as he believed that patients would recover better among fresh air and trees. Today it leaves us with this amazing structure where we wondered off for a while. We just kept on looking above our heads and examining all rhe wall, trying not to miss any of the beautiful details.

    Also believing art and colour to be therapeutic, Luis Domenech I Montaner decorated the pavilions profusely. The turreted roofs were tiled with ceramics and the reception pavillion embellished with mosaic murals and sculptures by Pau Gargallo.

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  • Jerelis's Profile Photo

    Hospital Sant Pau - Founded in 1401.

    by Jerelis Updated Apr 9, 2009

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    The entrance of the hospital.

    Sometimes there are places you want to see, and in advance you know that you won't be disappointed once you're actually there. The Hospital de la Santa Crue i de Sant Pau is one of those places.

    We stood in front of this amazing building and learned a few nice facts that we didn't know and surprised us a little bit. Listen, although the hospital's current building date from the 20th century, the Hospital de Sant Pau was founded in 1401 when six small medieval hospitals merged. The hospital's former buildings near the center of Barcelona date from the 15th century, and now house an art school (Escola Massana) and National Library of Catalonia, but that's maybe something for another visit to the city.

    In spite of being an interesting touristic spot of town, it is still running as an hospital today. We immediately saw the dfferent pavillions which are decorated with mosaics depicting mythological characters and some Catalonian history episodes. The building is protected by UNESCO.

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  • The most Unhospital-like Hospital

    by ramot418 Written Mar 31, 2009

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    This is undoubtedly the most underrated site in Barcelona. Even here on VirtualTourist it is way down on the list of things to see. In my opinion, this is one of the most beautiful sites in the city. The facade of the main entrance building which you see as you approach the hospital from Av Gaudi is quite nice, but the real jewels are on the hospital campus behind it, after entering the complex. After reviewing these pictures, it became obvious to me that they don't do justice to the place. You have to actually be there to really appreciate this unique site. And remember that inside the individual pavilions - each one a work of art - is a modern, functioning hospital. If you gotta be sick, this is the place to be hospitalized! :)

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    Hospital de la Santa Creu I de Sant Pau

    by MalenaN Written May 2, 2008

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    Hospital de la Santa Creu I de Sant Pau
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    Together with The Palau de la Música Catalana in Barcelona, built by the same art nouveau architect, the hospital is a World Heritage Site. It is still a hospital in use but much of the medical practice is being moved to more modern buildings. Some of the pavilions on the site will become museums.
    The present hospital was constructed in the beginning of the 20th century by Lluis Domenech i Montaner. He did not like big hospitals but thought that fresh air and art would make the patients well quicker. He built 16 pavilions in a big garden. Between the pavilions there were corridors underground. The hospital has been decorated by several artists and there are statues, tilled roofs, mosaics and more.
    You can join a tour if you want to see more, but I only walked around in the grounds, which you can do anytime.

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  • kanjon's Profile Photo

    Art Nouveau masterpiece by big brain!

    by kanjon Updated Mar 3, 2008

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    Hospital de Sant Pau is easily one of the most stunning architectural sights in Barcelona. The hospital was drawn by architect Lluís Domènech i Montaner who played an important role in defining the Modernisme arquitectonic (Art Nouveau / Jugendstil in architecture) in Catalonia. What an amazing brain Domènech i Montaner must have had, understanding the major importance of beauty in a hospital milieu.

    The hospital is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, together with Palau de la Música Catalana, by the same architect. The hospital was constructed between 1901-1912 and it must be the most beautiful hospital in the world!

    You are free to walk in the grounds but be sure to pay due respect to the sick people and the hospital staff. Do not forget it´s still a working place with real patients inside.

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  • Maurizioago's Profile Photo

    Sant Pau I Sant Creu Hospital.

    by Maurizioago Updated Feb 9, 2008

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    This working hospital is an Art Nouveau masterpiece by Lluis Domenech i Montaner. After his death the works were continued by his son. It was built between 1901 and 1930.

    It is made up of many pavillions; I think more than forty.

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  • spanishguy's Profile Photo

    Saint Paul Hospital -Hospital de San Pablo

    by spanishguy Updated Jul 13, 2006

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    St. Paul Hospital from Sagrada Familia
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    HOSPITAL OF THE HOLY CROSS AND SAINT PAUL
    This hospital, near from the Sagrada Familia temple, was built by Domènech i Montaner between 1901 and 1930. In spite of it's an interesting touristic spot in town it still runing as an hospital today. The different pavillions are decorated with mosaics depicting mythological characters and some Catalonian history episodes. The building is protected by UNESCO.

    HOSPITAL DE LA SANTA CRUZ Y DE SAN PABLO
    Este hospital, cerca del templo de la Sagrada Familia, fue construido por Domènech i Montaner entre 1901 y 1930. A pesar de ser un interesante lugar turístico continua siendo un hospital en la actualidad. Los diferentes pabellones que lo conforman están decorados con mosaicos representando personajes mitológicos y episodios de la historia catalana. El edificio está protegido por la UNESCO.

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    Hospital de Sant Pau

    by chancay Updated Apr 11, 2006

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    I only knew I should visit this place without having any further information about it. I not even knew that this hospital is still working.
    I was really impressed....I think it´s a fabolous place to get better again, just too beautiful the buildings, although I haven´t been inside and don´t know how the patient rooms are.

    This hospital complex has been constructed between 1902 and 1911 from the catalan architect Lluís Domènech i Montanerand was paid by the funds of Barcelona banker Paul Gil through his last will and testament.
    Since 1997 it is part of the world cultural heritage of the UNESCO.

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