Restoration of a morisca house

Granada, Granada, Andalucía.

Dating of the building: 15th century.

Applicant: Carlos Sánchez Gómez.

Reason for the award :

For rescuing an outstanding example of a private Islamic mansion built shortly after the reconquest and adapting it for its future use.

Restoration work has turned an old Albaicin housing estate into an excellent example of a Moorish house from the late 15th century.

Until its restoration, awarded with the Europa Nostra diploma, the Morisca House was an old building with dilapidated dwellings. On reopening it as a hotel in 2001 the public were given the opportunity to visit and see the beauty of a typical Moorish house from the end of the 15th century, nestled in the heart of the Albaicín. The three-storey building, organized around a courtyard of a Moorish inn, has a gallery on its sides built on pillars and columns. As the galleries are at different levels, they act as a spiral staircase around the patio, allowing access to the rooms.

The restoration works made it possible to rescue the plaster arches, the tile panels, and the horizontal polychrome wooden roof girders or ceilings. All the works have been aiming at recovering the original walls and materials. That way, the upper gallery has been opened, with an Arab tile roof and eaves, thus rescuing the balustrades, the uprights, and the foundations. Following this idea, the plinth and plasterwork added to the main portal have been removed, and the pool that appeared in the archaeological excavations rebuilt. A great example of the original wealth of the house is the almatraya or pavement painting with Moorish tiles, discovered in the lower room of the property.

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