Plaça de Sant Felip Neri, pure history in Barcelona’s Gothic Quarter

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The Plaça de Sant Felip Neri is a unique square in Barcelona, named after the Baroque church of the same name that presides over it. It’s located in the Gothic Quarter, in the district of Ciutat Vella, and more specifically in the neighbourhood of Call and Sant Felip Neri. If you pay attention, you can see the holes made by shrapnel from an air bomb the national side threw during the Spanish Civil War.

The square stands on the old medieval cemetery of Montjuïc del Bisbe, which was destroyed during the Spanish Civil War. You can access the square through Sant Felip Neri street and then Sant Sever street. The Church of Sant Felip Neri is joined to the house of the Congregation of the Oratory of Sant Felip Neri, which can also be accessed from the square.

The square is surrounded by Renaissance houses. It’s also the seat of the old houses of the Boilermakers and Cobblers’ guilds. The latter is now the Footwear Museum of Barcelona. In the centre of the square, there is a water fountain with an octagonal base.

The local architect Adolf Florensa was in charge of the reconstruction project and decided to create a square. He also decided to adapt two Renaissance façades of two buildings that hadn’t been rebuilt in order to create two accesses to the square from the Catedral avenue and from the Via Laietana. Finally, the façade of the entrance to Sant Felip Neri street was also created using the elements of the old buildings.