Camposagrado Palace

Avilés, Spain

Camposagrado Palace is a baroque-style palace located in Avilés. It was constructed on the site of a medieval building and used by the family of the Marquises of Camposagrado until the nineteenth century when it became a military barracks. In the twentieth century, the property was partially used for commercial purposes, but after acquisition and restoration by the City Council of Avilés, it became the School of Art for the Principality of Asturias.

Camposagrado was probably designed by architect Francisco Menéndez Camina of Avilés, between 1693 and 1696. It began from the medieval remains of a previous palace on the site, owned by the powerful family Las Alas, which was the lineage of the wife of the Marquises of Camposagrado. In 1661 Gutierre Bernaldo de Quirós was given the title Marquises of Camposagrado and it was his wife, Eulalia de las Alas Carreño who would pass the property on to her heirs.

The expansion began both to the south and to the north. The northern expansion, toward the sea was defensive and ended at the ancient city walls. The northern façade, toward Pier Park, features a loggia or veranda reminiscent of those which were popular in the Renaissance, allowing a viewer to watch the port.

The southern expansion was ornamental and opened into a plaza which both looked at the town and allowed the town to view the villa on display. The façade faces the Plaza de Camposagrado and features two square towers flanking a central building which was common at the time with the aristocracy of Asturias. Multiple balconies and window lintels as well as overlapping pairs of columns in various styles including Tuscan, Corinthian, and Solomonic add to the ornate style. The central focus of the southern façade is the family coat of arms on the middle balcony on the upper floor.

During the eighteenth century, several repairs and modifications were completed. In 1723, Mauritius Haedo was hired for some minor repairs. In 1774, the local stonework master Pedro Solis, was engaged to repair the gallery, some broken slabs and paving stones, as well as some pipes. Solis' contract also specified that Francisco Pruneda Cañal was in charge of building the Marquis' mill house.

The nineteenth century marked consecutive eras of decline for the Palace. During the Peninsular War it is used as the headquarters of Napoleon's troops and still later to house Asturian troops. The walls of the villa were destroyed during 1818-1821 and the building was opened on the sides of the gallery arches to facilitate communication with the parapet. In the twentieth century, Eladio Fernández Carreño, owner of the house in 1942, requested authorization from the municipality to complete interior renovations, creating stores for mercantile trade. Because the building was historically significant, Fernández Carreño asked for approval of modifications in 1943 and again 1949. He was dissuaded from some of his plans, but the lower level of the building housed stores in the twentieth century.

On 27 May, 1955, the property was declared a Cultural monument. Avilés City Council began taking steps to acquire the property in 1999 and started a restoration project in 2002. The exterior stonework though damaged, was primarily preserved, but the interior was completely destroyed. The only remaining feature of the interior was the grand staircase, though there were partial remains of some of the wooden ceilings. Complete restoration of both the interior and exterior was performed.

Today it houses the School of Art, under the Ministry of Education and Science of the Principality of Asturias.



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Founded: c. 1693
Category: Palaces, manors and town halls in Spain

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User Reviews

Pisadiel (4 years ago)
The Escuela Superior de Arte del Principáu d'Asturies (ESAPA), a center founded in 2002 as a Superior School, with degrees equivalent to university degrees, Design and Conservation and Restoration of Cultural Assets. It occupies the Camposagrado Palace (17th century), between the streets of La Muralla, Cuesta la Molinera, Pasaje del Bollu and San Bernardo, in Avilés (Asturies): a square-shaped palace, austere in origin and that merged with the old wall of Avilés and a palace from the s. XIV of the lineage of the Wings, which passed into the hands of the son of Doña Eulalia de las Alas, the new Marquis of Camposagrado (1661) became a benchmark of Asturian baroque. The facade of the Plaza de Camposagrado (S.) follows a baroque design (1693) by the Avilesino architect Don Francisco Menéndez Camina 'el Viejo' (1629-94), following the model of the House of Don Pedro Valdés (Xixón), whose Construction (1693-96) was surely continued by his son Don Francisco Menéndez Camina 'el Mozo' (1662-1719), as commissioned by Don Gutierre Bernaldo de Quirós de Quirós de las Alas y Carreño (1635-99), 1st Marquis of Camposagrado (1661-99) -elected governor and captain general of Nueva Granada, president of the Audiencia of Santa Fe, councilor of the Treasury, magistrate of Madrid and Burgos, governor of Asturias, mayorazgo and eldest relative of the Houses of Bernaldo de Quirós. With the passing of the centuries it had shops on the ground floor and houses on the floors, until today it is occupied by the current higher school of art.
Jose Antonio Gonzalez Nieto (4 years ago)
Installed in the Camposagrado Palace, a baroque building from the late 17th century, it preserves highly decorated facades that break the usual austerity of this style. The imposing coat of arms stands out in the center of the facade that faces the square. The floor on one side (Pasaje del Bollo) has been decorated with curious tiles, perhaps as a concession to its current use as an art school.
Taxi Avilés - Guille (5 years ago)
Reading in the rain in front of the art school ... that is art !!
Julio Rojo Eyaralar (5 years ago)
A beautiful palace located in the historic center of Aviles, is quite well maintained, currently I think it is dedicated to a Design School. Its roof restored relatively recently needs a good cleaning of gutters and downspouts .... also between the tiles remove that weed and the only thing it does is to dislodge tiles and create leaks and breakdowns
Antonio HERRERA CASADO (5 years ago)
Impressive baroque palace, the best in Asturias, this Avinosino from Camposagrado, which was built at the end of the 17th century and today shows on its southern facade the strength of the Baroque and the enthusiasm of its blazons. It is one of the icons of Aviles, which must be visited safely.
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