Nestled in the heart of Barcelona, within the main floor of an Eixample building, Casa Llimona is another layer of the city’s rich history and charm. This building, with its bourgeois roots, was constructed in 1890 under the gui- dance of two renowned architects: Enric V. Sagnier and his associate Joan Rubió i Bellver. Sagnier, known for his prolific architectural contributions to Barcelona, stands alongside iconic figures such as Gaudí, Puig i Cadafalch, and Domènech i Montaner as one of the pillars of Catalan modernism. In the early 20th century, this former palace served as the residence of the Mar- quises of La Motilla. Later on, various members of the Llimona family also called this house home. Josep Llimona, a renowned sculptor and prominent figure of Catalan modernism, his brother and painter Joan Llimona, and their daughter Núria Llimona, acclaimed for her urban landscape paintings of the Eixample. Like many buildings in the city, Casa Llimona has evolved over the years. In the 1950s, it became the headquarters of the Industrial and Commercial Mutual of Barcelona-Fire Insurance. It was during this period that the noucentista-inspired fresco in the entrance hall was painted by Pau Ollé in 1956. The exterior was also renovated, featuring bas-reliefs, notably the representation of the God Hermes who, according to Greek mythology, along with Hercules, discovered and founded the city. Hence, the myth that the city of Barcelona is under the protective influence of Hermes, symbolizing prosperity and commerce, favored by the Catalan bourgeoisie at the time. Today, this charming hotel retains its original essence with noble elements that withstand the test of time. Features such as the stained glass skylight, marquetry woodwork, and white marble, mosaic, or hydraulic flooring hold great value for the city’s heritage. Every element and detail of the house, where the past and present converge, exudes warmth and authenticity.

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Renovation 2023

This latest renovation of the hotel adapts to the existing architecture, maintaining its historical elements.

The design project began with the study and analysis of the original elements, eliminating the layers accumulated during decades of renovations and recovering the essence of the noble materials such as wood, marble or the original stuccos.

The common areas have suffered almost no alterations since their original elements have been restored, while the rooms have been completely renovated. In them, although the existing architecture is recognized, the design is more modern, seeking to differentiate the new and the old. The common denominator is always the warmth and quality of the noble materials used, such as marble, wood or brass.

As it is a hotel in a historic building, its distribution is the result of the configuration of the original walls, giving rise to rooms larger than usual with ceilings more than 3m high. Some of the rooms have been able to maintain original elements such as mosaic floors or large ornate wooden carpentry. The new distribution within the rooms have tried to respect the arches and rounded shapes of the existing architecture, providing more organic lines to the whole.

The simplicity of the design highlights all its elements, enhancing the architectural quality of the space. In this way all the details play an important role in the decoration, from the iron and brass mechanisms to the choice of lamps. As a result we obtain an elegant, sober and welcoming space.

Architecture and interior design – Gina Cebamanos Martínez, architect
Collaborators – Júlia Vallejo Pérez, architect
Photographer – Enric Badrinas