"LOS BOTINES" HOUSE (1891 - 1892)
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CRITICAL COMMENTARY

A building with homes, a warehouse, and a store, commissioned by Simón Fernández and Mariano Andrés, connected with the textile trade and friends of Eusebi Güell, that recommended Gaudí. He built the house detached, with an almost rectangular floor plan and a medievally-inspired look very close to that of the neighboring Episcopal Palace of Astorga. He made an effort to overcome historical styles in this building, seeking to present a modern concept of architecture and to bring together the utilitarian, building, and artistic aspects closer to architecture and the local climate.

Casa de Botines has seven levels (half-basement, ground floor and mezzanine, two more floors, and attics) designated as warehouse, store, residence of the owners, and apartments for rent. Outside, the grey stone that comes from the area stands out, set out in irregular blocks of stone and irregular rows. At the corners, four circular towers have the function of rounding the edges of the facades and letting light enter. Outside, the only sculpture of the house stands out, located above the main door; the work of Antoni Cantó and Llorenç Matamala, it represents Saint George fighting the dragon. The door is closed by an imposing iron grate presided over by a lion, an animal evoking the name of the city.

The structure of the floors is supported by main walls, while in the basement there are iron pillars with which Gaudí achieved a structure free of walls and optimal for commercial transactions.

The building was acquired in 1931 by Caja de Ahorros y Monte de Piedad of León, and later passed on to Caja España, which between 1994 and 1996 restored it and established its headquarters there.

Item of Cultural Interest since 1969.
Part of the Route of Santiago since 1999.

     
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