by Aodh Matthew Visitación Patrimonio
Several landmarks in Barcelona serve as recognition of the Philippines as one of Spain’s previous colonies. Among them are the historical marker of Rizal’s arrival, Carrer Doctor Rizal, historic marker of the La Solidaridad headquarters, Montjuïc Castle – site of imprisonment of Rizal, Carrer Manila, Carrer Filipines, Tabacalera de Filipinas, Hotel 1898, and the stained glass of Nuestra Señora de Antipolo in the Temple Expiatori del Sagrat Cor in Tibidabo.
Carrer de Sant Pau Marker
Carrer (Catalan for street) Sant Pau lies within the touristic as well as ‘seedy’ Barri Gòtic (Gothic Quarters). On the wall of C/ Sant Pau, 11 a marker is attached and the inscription states that Jose Rizal (1861 – 1896) was welcomed upon arrival in Barcelona in 1882 in an inn, then known as Fonda Espanya and is presently known as Hôtel Espagne (french for Hotel España). Haphazardly, the neighborhood is home to numerous Filipino immigrants who have settled in Barcelona. The area is ‘filipinized’ by the presence of the Església de Sant Agustí (Saint Augustine Church) where the Filipino flock professes its faith.
Tabacalera de Filipinas and Hotel 1898
In 1881, La Compañía General de Tabacos de Filipinas also known as Tabacalera Filipina is now the Hotel 1898 at La Rambla, 109. Situated at the heart of historic center of Barcelona along which span the world renowned Las Ramblas, Hotel 1898, one of the Núñez i Navarro is a self-explanatory structure of filipinism in Barcelona. Named after the year when Philippine Independence was proclaimed, Hotel 1898 maintains an ambience of colonial Spain when Philippines and Cuba were last bastions of Imperial Rule.
Hotel 1898 offering the colonial Cuban and Philippine ambiance
Carrer de Manila
Located at the plush district of Sarrià, it extends from one corner of Gran Via Carles III and ends at the intersection of Carrer del Doctor Ferran. At the corner of C/ Manila and C/del Capità Arenas lies the Parroquia de Santa Gema of the Congregación de la Pasión. The district is home to bars, shops and fine dining.
Carrer de les Filipines
Carrer de les Filipines is found in the District of Sant Andreu specifically in the barri (quarter) of Sagrera. It starts from one plaza (Plaça dels Jardins d’Elx) on one corner of C/ de Garcilaso to another (Plaça Assamblea de Catalunya) along C/ de les Antilles. It is parallel to Avinguda Meridiana.
Nuestra Señora de Antipolo Stained Glass
Magnificently nestled on top of Tibidabo Mountain is the Temple Expiatori del Sagrat Cor (Expiatory Shrine of the Sacred Heart). The complex includes an amusement park and is a major tourist destination. It is a Barcelona analogue to the Basilique dun Sacre Coeur in Paris. It’s a major surprise to Filipino tourists to find a stained glass of the morena Our Lady of Antipolo in the upper chapel left wing to the entrance. It is an offering of the Filipino Community and is juxtaposed with offerings of other foreign communities in Barcelona.