Date: Dec, 2014
Location: Seville, Spain
Plaza de España, known as “the Venice of Seville”, is situated inside Maria Luisa Park and measures 50,000 sq meters, the size of five football (soccer) pitches. A semi-circular brick building designed in Renaissance/neo-Moorish style, with a tower at each end (tall enough to be visible around the city) surrounds the plaza. In front of the building is a 500m canal crossed by four bridges, in which visitors can paddle rented boats.
All along the wall by the canal are 48 alcoves with benches, one for each province of Spain, each with a relevant tableau and map, all designed on colorful azulejos (painted ceramic tiles). In a further regional reference, the four bridges represent the four ancient kingdoms of Spain: Castille, Aragon, Navarre and Leon.
This massive building is Seville’s most impressive after the cathedral, for its sheer scale and grandeur. Plaza de España was built for the Ibero-American Exhibition of 1929, along with many of the pavilions around the Parque Maria Luisa. The architect Anibal Gonzalez designed the Plaza to wow the Expo’s exhibitors and visitors from around Spain and Latin America, and to show Seville’s talents in industry and crafts. Today the building houses various government offices while the Plaza remains a popular tourist attraction.
The Plaza has been used as a location for filming several notable movies, such as Star Wars, Lawrence of Arabia, and The Dictator.