Curiosities about Barcelona

Barcelona has been source of inspiration for so many people throughout history… Its architecture, gastronomy, art and traditions are a reference worldwide.

Part of the essence of the Catalan’s Capital can be found in each of Carner Barcelona’s signature perfumes and we are really proud about it, therefore today we want to bring you closer to it through eight fun facts about our beloved city.

1. Gaudí was not the original architect of Sagrada Familia

Even though La Sagrada Família is one of the major works of Antoní Gaudí, Francisco de Paula del Villar was the first architect commissioned to design Barcelona’s most iconic church. The works began in March 1882, following Villar’s design. It wasn’t until 1883 when Antoní Gaudí got involved in the project.  On March 1883, Villar left the project, and Gaudí took the lead and changed the original design radically.

Picture via Triprepublic

2. Catedral del Mar “belongs” to FC Barcelona

One of the beautiful stained glass windows reveals the club’s shield. During the cathedral’s restoration in the 60s, the city’s most famous football team Barcelona donated 100.000 “pesetas” (around 600€), in gratitude, its shield was included on the windows of the building. Other glasses show the shields of other donors. You are more tan welcome to discover them all in your next visit!

Picture by Xavi Casinos via La Vanguardia

 3. Columbus does not point towards América

The Columbus Monument was built in 1888 for the World Exposition and unites two of the most important roads of Barcelona: the traditional Ramblas and Passeig de Colon, right in front of the port of Barcelona.

There are many interpretations about the location Columbus is pointing. A commonly mistaken idea is that he is pointing towards the New Continent, in fact, America is in the opposite direction!

Some believe the creator decided to create the statue pointing his hand out to sea, illustrating his achievements. While, others say that he points towards India, the destination he was originally trying to reach when he bumped into America.

Picture via Sputnik Mundo

4. Barcelona is to thank for World Book Day

Every April 23rd, Barcelona celebrates the saint of Catalonia’s patron with roses and books. Known as “La Diada de Sant Jordi” (or Lovers’ Day), which curiously coincides with the death of both Cervantes and Shakespeare, inspired UNESCO to create the World Book and Copyright Day in 1995. In Carner Barcelona, we are so proud of this tradition that we have dedicated one of our signature perfumes to Sant Jordi’s legend. Discover Rose & Dragon, from our Black Collection, here.

5. Prides itself with the largest metropolitan park in the world

With an area of 84.65 km², Barcelona’s Parc de Collserola is the largest metropolitan park in the world. 22 times larger than Central Park in NYC!

Picture via Torre de Collserola

6. Has become the first city in the world to gain the “Biosphere World Class Destination” certification

This recognition is a testament to Barcelona’s commitment to sustainability in numerous fields, including transport, accommodation, as well as food & drink, of course!

7. Nine UNESCO-protected monuments are found in our city!

Two of them – Palau de la Música Catalana and Hospital de Sant Pau – have been designed by Modernista architect Lluis Domenech i Montaner, while seven belong to Antoni Gaudi, Barcelona’s most famous son. These are part of the “Works of Antoni Gaudí” list and include Park Güell, Palau Güell, Casa Milà, Casa Vicens, La Sagrada Família, Casa Batlló, and the Crypt of the Church at Colonia Guell.

8. Barcelona boasts about being the only city with the Royal Gold Medal

Barcelona is the first and only city that received a Royal Gold Medal for architecture in 1999 thanks to the huge influence that the city has had on many contemporary architects around the world.

This honor for architecture is awarded annually since 1848, by the Royal Institute of British Architects on behalf of the British monarch, in recognition of an individual’s or group’s substantial contribution to international architecture.