Bodegas Güell (1895-1901)

How to arrive?

The structure of the Bodegas Güell (Wine Cellars Güell) is to be found in the rocky and abrupt massif of the Garraf, at approximately 25 km. from Barcelona. It consists of a building of a rectangular shape and a porter's lodge.

In the main building various parts can be distinguished: a basement, originally designed to be a stockroom; a ground floor, which used to be the watchmen's dwelling and a top floor used as a chapel as well as a viewing-point. The Wine Cellars themselves were located in the former farmhouse of the property, which Gaudí connected by means of a bridge of a parabolic profile.

The horizontal structure is based on building blocks vaults leaning on the outer brick walls. These sloping walls, which also form a sort of shelter, are and covered in the typical local white stone with greyish shade. Owing to the great gradient of the walls, the windows are dormer-shaped.

The porter's lodge, made of bricks and stone, reminds of the buildings constructed by Gaudí's assistants Berenguer and Rubió i Bellver years later in the Güell Colony. This construction constitutes the entrance to the estate, to which access is gained by passing below a parabolic arch of bricks. The railing of wrought iron that closes the arch bears a particular importance given to its complexity of execution.

A major dilemma immediately springs to mind when one begins to read the texts on the Bodegas Güell of Garraf: is this a creation by Gaudí or by Berenguer?
Many biographers of Gaudí's work have commented that Gaudí himself stated that the construction of Wine Cellars Güell was to be attributed to his collaborator Berenguer. Moreover, many photos of this construction were found in Berenguer's file. In addition, Berenguer used to collaborate very closely with Gaudí, who came to consider him as his right hand.
The point at stake here is the debate about the authorship of the building starting from a comparison of the Wine Cellars with other works of both artists.

We went to see three buildings in which construction it is known to have played a role Berenguer despite the fact that he never obtained a degree in architecture; none of the typical Gaudi's elements appear on their facades but a column at 13 Gran de Gràcia Street, whose capital reminds of the columns at Palau Güell. Not even the house Berenguer constructed for Gaudí in the Park Güell has gaudinist details. So, the question is about how it was possible that many years before constructing those buildings Berenguer could construct such an outstanding structure like the Bodegas Güell of Garraf.

On the other hand, details like the chimney resembling those of Palau Güell, the railing of wrought iron at the foyer, the typography used in Güell's initial and, above all, Gaudí's signature on the plans, prove that the real author of the project was Antoni Gaudí.
Furthermore, in 1882, Güell had already entrusted to Gaudí the construction of a hunting pavilion in the same place, whose only information known is an elevation reproduced by Ràfols in his book of 1929.

Therefore, the conclusion we have arrived at is that, in any case, Gaudí projected the above-mentioned structure, but Berenguer carried out its construction.

At present, the building is a restaurant where all kinds of banquets can be celebrated at once while enjoying an enchanting view over the Mediterranean Sea.

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