The Sant Pau Art Nouveau Site, built in Barcelona between 1905 and 1930, was originally designed by Lluís Domènech i Montaner as a garden city for the sick. After serving as a public hospital for a century, its renovated pavilions are back in their full splendor. It takes about one hour to visit, stroll around the gardens and enjoy the city’s good weather.

This modernist complex is Europe’s most prominent and it stands as a testament to Barcelona’s wealth, as well as its innovative spirit.

 

The History of the Sant Pau Art Nouveau Site

Domènech i Montaner’s project, completed by his son in 1930, is an innovative architectural and urbanistic creation that honors the hospital typologies that were in force until the beginning of the 20th century.

At the end of the 19th century, the old Hospital de la Santa Creu building in the Raval district of Barcelona was no longer big enough and became obsolete, thus, it had to be relocated.

Following the initiative of the Barcelona banker, Pau Gil, who upon his death earmarked half of his assets to build a new hospital in Barcelona to assist the poor, Hospital de Sant Pau’s construction began. The project was managed by the Hospital de la Santa Creu.

The ambitious project was inspired by the most advanced hygienist trends of the time. Services were separated to avoid contagion. Open spaces were designed to bring in natural light and circulate the air, allowing a more pleasant recovery period for patients.

The monumental complex consists of 27 red brick pavilions and is located on the border of Eixample and Guinardó.

The hospital city is surrounded by gardens, with medical and general services, departments, and a church, all connected through a 2km network of corridors, allowing transfer of patients from inside.

 

Declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1997, the hospital’s architectural and artistic value takes on international recognition, especially with its new use of its renovated pavilions.

After over 80 years of providing healthcare to patients, the hospital moved to new premises in 2009. Following their renovation, the modernist pavilions of Domènech i Montaner currently house many different institutions.

The site is now a campus and the headquarters of international organizations, such as the European Forest Institute, Casa Àsia, the Global University Network for Innovation, and the United Nations University Institute on Globalization, Culture and Mobility.

What to see at the Hospital de Sant Pau Site

A visit to this stunning complex allows visitors to immerse themselves in history, art and current affairs. The exhibition space in the Sant Salvador Pavilion allows visitors to travel through the history of medicine in Barcelona and the trajectory of one of the oldest health
institutions in Europe.

The Sant Salvador Pavilion is the starting point of the Art Nouveau site’s tour of its outdoor spaces that model the city-garden created in the early twentieth century.

During the walk, you can see the beautiful exterior facades of the buildings and admire the distinct domes, roofs, sculptures and stained glass windows.

In addition, you can access the Sant Rafael Pavilion, where you can admire its interior as it was built in the early twentieth century. You can also tour the tunnels that connect the different buildings underground and visit the Administration Pavilion.

Visitor information

Route can be done with a map

Accessible:

Monday to Sunday:

10 – 18.30 h (from April to October).

Monday to Sunday:

10 – 17 h (from November to March).

Duration:

45-60 min

General rates:

Free visit: 16 € 20 € guided visit 5 € (3 12 years old)

Audioguide 4 €.

Reduced rate:

Barcelona residents, young people aged 12 to 29, over 65, people with a degree of disability
of less than 65% or degree of dependence 1 or 2, large family or single-parent cardholders,
holders of the Rosa Reduced Card

11, 2€ free visit  and 14€ guided visit

Free visit (ask at the ticket office)

Unemployed persons and ERTO (free visit only), children under 12 years of age
(accompanied by an adult), Reduced Pink Card holders, persons with a degree of disability
equal to or greater than 65% or degree 3 of dependency and their companion, ICOM
members. Seniors over 65 years of age on the first Sunday of each month.

Discounts

20 % discount:

BCN Card, Tourist Bus, City Tours, Library Card, TR3SC Club, members of Òmnium
Cultural.

50 % discount:

Modernism Route, Youth Card, members of the Official College of Doctors of Barcelona and
the Official College of Nurses of Barcelona.

Last access: 30 minutes before closing time

In compliance with current regulations, guided tours of the Sant Pau Art Nouveau Site are
only allowed to be conducted by Art Nouveau Site guides, tour guides authorized by the
Generalitat de Catalunya and teachers accompanying groups of students.

Children under the age of 16 must be accompanied by an adult.

How to get to the Sant Pau Site

Metro (L5): Sant Pau – Dos de Maig

Bus: H8, 19, 47, 117, 192

Combined ticket: Sant Pau, Palau de la Música and Casa Fuster

On the occasion of the commemoration of the Domènech i Montaner in 2023, the anniversary of the death of this brilliant figure of Catalan culture, a combined ticket has been made available for everyone to visit the Art Nouveau Site (former Hospital de la Santa Creu i
Sant Pau), the Palau de la Música Catalana and the Viennese Café of Casa Fuster.

The Sant Pau Art Nouveau Site and the Palau de la Música Catalana were declared World Heritage Sites by UNESCO in 1997. Together with Hotel Casa Fuster, an urban mansion converted into a luxury hotel, these sites synthesize the architecture of Lluís Domènech i Montaner.

The price of this combined ticket is 32€. Exclusive sale through the following link

Want to know more about the curiosities of Catalan modernism in Barcelona?

We highly recommend that you book one of our group tours in Parc Güell and La Sagrada Familia to skip the long queues and explore each site professional guide who will give you insights about the secrets of these architectural wonders.

At Barcelona Local Experiences, we have been organizing small group and private tours in Barcelona since 2015. We have several quality awards from Trip Advisor and Viator. Our professional guides not only have great knowledge of the city and a high level of experience,
but also great character, as often remarked by our clients after a tour.

You may also be interested in reading:

8 Secrets of the Sagrada Familia You Need to Know

What to see in Barcelona in a single day?

Park Güell: things you didnt know about Barcelona’s most scenic spot

A Guide to the Gothic Quarter in Barcelona

La Pedrera. Barcelona’s most famous building. Discover why

Best food market in Barcelona: La Boqueria