La Pedrera: Gaudí's "Rock Quarry"... An apartment unmatched

La Pedrera, also known as Casa Milá, will challenge your imagination. It is unlike any other apartment building you'll ever encounter.

Pere Milá i Camps commissioned Gaudí to build La Pedrera, which turned out to be one of the few projects which Gaudí built from design to completion. Construction took place for 1906 to 1912.

Originally built for Milá and his wife, Casa Milá changed owners several times over the following decades.

La Pedrera did not wear time well. By the 1980's, her beauty was but a memory. The façade of La Pedrera was covered in dull, brown paint.

In 1984, UNESCO proclaimed the building a World Heritage Site. This stroke of fortune meant a bright future for Gaudí's jewel.

Restoration began on the building, returning La Pedrera to the glow and glamour of its early days.

Second to Sagrada Familia in number of visits in 2013, nearly 1,000,000 people visited the attraction on Barcelona's famed Passeig de Gracia.

Gaudí's La Pedrera stands out as a crown jewel amid the stately and splendid Passeig de Gracia, a street laden with architectural treasures.

Its undulating white stone façade, punctuated by balconies laced with a maze of beautifully worked iron, provides a contrasting surface of texture and form.

Two huge doors of glass wrapped in iron invite visitors to enter and explore.

After passing through the doors you are transported into an interior courtyard of color and form. Gaudí, in order to maximize the natural light, painted the walls with a dark to light color scheme. He used darker colors at the mouth of the courtyard, where the light is strongest.

No tour of Gaudí's La Pedrera would be complete without a visit to the roof. You won't find an industrial roof dotted with aluminum vents and plain brick chimneys.

Gaudí turned his vents and chimneys into sentinels who, through the narrow slits in their helmets, would keep permanent watch over the building's residents.

The undulating roof is tiled and dotted not only by the helmeted warriors, but also by several bulbous sculptures covered in a mosaic of white tiles. From here, you can look down into the various interior courtyards, stretch out to reach the clouds or take in the fantastic views of Passeig de Gracia.

  • The name "Casa Milá" is derived from the last name of Pere Milá, the man who commissioned Gaudí to build the structure, and literally translates to "Mila's house".
  • There are rumors that George Lucas designed his storm trooper helmets based on Gaudí's roof sentinels.
  • Locals nicknamed Casa Milá La Pedrera, or, "The Quarry," a tongue-in-cheek moniker making reference to the building's stone façade.
  • The building uses internal courtyards to provide light for each apartment.
  • Instead of the widely-popular load-bearing walls used by most buildings, Gaudí designed Casa Milá with load-bearing columns. This revolutionary, "open floor plan" design allowed walls to be placed as needed.

A close up look at a section of the Pedrera`s facade, iron balconies and windows.
A close-up look at an iron balconies and windows on the Pedrera's façade.

Opening Times for La Pedrera are:

Date Opening Times
November 3 to March 2 Open daily from 9 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.
March 3 to November 2 Open daily from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Please Note: Last tickets sold 30 minutes before closing time.

Location & Contact Information:

  • La Pedrera address: Provença, 261 - 265. 08008, Barcelona
  • La Pedrera telephone number: +34 902 202 138
  • How to get to La Pedrera:Both the blue and the green metro lines will take you to the "Diagonal" stop. From there it is a 3-5 minute walk.