Palma's Architectural history is rich and long with some fine examples of buildings spanning hundreds of years
Palma's Architectural history is rich and long with some fine examples of buildings spanning hundreds of years and encompassing a myriad of styles and designs popular throughout the ages.
One such style which is often overlooked and sometimes not appreciated for what it is, is Rationalism. Popular in the 20's and 30's of the last century, it's a functional style of construction, stripped back of any elements of decoration, so that the 'beauty' of the structure could be better understood, rather than decorative fripperies, which were prone to degredation.
A stark contrast to the Modernist buildings of the previous decades and a style which became almost 'dictatoresque' in the despot governed countries of Europe at that time, including of course, Franco's Spain.
There are examples of Rationalism all over Palma and Mallorca and today I'm going to focus on a couple of giant edifices which are now hotels.
Just down from the Plaza Espana, the present day Hotel UR Palacio Avenida occupies what was once the Cinema Avenida, which was constructed in 1941 to the design of the Mallorcan Architect Gabriel Alomar. Looking for all the world like a Moscow skyscraper, it was classed as a protected building by the council, not only for its style, but also for its assoication with the architect. Converted in 2009 by Bruno Borrione, a member of the Philippe Starck team, the building is a triumph of style both inside and out.
Curvier, but just as imposing, the Hotel Armadams on Palma's seafront Paseo Maritimo. Designed in the 30's by Guillermo Forteza Piña it shares its heritage with the Royal Family's summer palace, Marivent, just down the coast, designed by Forteza Piña as a house for an extremely wealthy Greek/Egyptian. Many of Palma's municipal buildings and public areas at the time were also designed by him as he was Mayor of the city for some time!
If you fancy seeing a bit more of the hotels, or even staying in them, just click on these links..........
Enjoy your stay!