Friday, 24 April 2015

The Mirador de la Alameda

If you have ever visited the impressive Alcázar or the bodegas of González Byass in Jerez, you will almost certainly have noticed the Mirador which sits between them. A mirador is a place from which one can enjoy the view, and from the upper floor, accessed by a spiral stairway, there are excellent vistas in all directions, and can get a really good understanding of the lie of the land.

It was commissioned in 1903 by Antonio Paz Partida and stood at his small finca close to the González Hontoria Park. He donated it to Padre Damián of the Casa de Ejercicios Esprituales of the Cartuja in the parish of Las Nieves where it remained until 2009, when it was given to the Council who restored it and moved it to its present position in June that year. It was inaugurated by the mayor and three members of the original owner’s family.

(foto:gente y habitantes de jerez)
This type of cast iron construction was common in the late XIX and early XX centuries as the rising bourgeoisie wanted to display their wealth, but few such buildings survive.  The Mirador is of classic turn of the century design: Art Nouveau and Modernism, and all sorts of quiosks and bandstands were once abundant. These related in a way to other notable buildings featuring cast iron in Jerez: Bodega La Concha at González Byass (1869), the Mercado de Abastos (1885) and the Railway Station (1908). Cast Iron went out of fashion with the arrival of reinforced concrete in the 1920s (Teatro Villamarta 1927).

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