The next Monday, I opted to head deep into L'Eixample, and visit a hospital. I took a bus, which was skirting the northern part of the district. After getting off the bus stop, I was walking down the hill to the southern end of the block, since that was the entrance to the Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau, a Modernista building that was built by Lluís Domènech i Montaner.
As I was going down the hill, I already saw some tour buses stopping, with their passengers getting off, and taking photos of the facade, as pictured above. One can actually visit this complex, which was a fully-functioning hospital until 2009. There is still a very contemporary hospital in the same block, but at least this historic building is now a museum and cultural centre.
Of course I wanted to see the interior, so I bought myself a ticket. The tour begins with the cellar, which is actually part of a massive underground tunnel system between the various buildings. This was designed so that patients can be wheeled in and out of various buildings without going outside and encountering the elements.
The first building has some exhibits about Barcelona, and about the architect of this complex. The interior is well restored and shows the highlight of the Modernista period.
One then visits several other buildings, passing through the massive courtyard. One sees the symmetrical design of the complex, with a large wide administrative building at the front, and several similar looking smaller buildings radiating from the central spine. In one of the buildings, there is a recreation of what a hospital ward looked like back when it was still a functioning hospital.
As I mentioned before, there is a tunnel that links all buildings together, found underneath the central spine. It slopes down, and as can be seen by the photos above, has several openings that would lead to the individual buildings.
The visit ends by bringing you back to the administrative building, which was the first building one sees. However, this time, you go to the interior, and its halls are just amazing and wonderful. My pictures above show the marvellous design employed in these buildings, which made me gasp at times. It was very visually arresting, and definitely something one would gaze at for quite some time.