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Report - Plaza de Toros Monumental de Barcelona -- Barcelona -- Sept 2013

Discussion in 'European and International Sites' started by dicky21, Sep 15, 2013.

  1. dicky21

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    Having closed in 2011 just ahead of the practice being banned in Catalonia the 'Plaza de Toros Monumental' now sits unloved in the heart of Barcelona with future proposals of an indoor market, a block of luxury apartments and a mosque financed by Dubai. On a Sunday evening sometime in 2011, amid the cheers of fans and the bloody death throes of fighting bulls, Barcelona hosted its last-ever bullfight that was to mark the end of 600 years of history. As dusk fell in the Catalan capital, sequin-clad local matador Serafín Marín dispatched the last of six bulls on the sand of the packed La Monumental bullring. The stands were packed with an 18,000 strong crowd with some fans having apparently spent up to 8 times the ticket face value! Thousands of bulls have died on the sand of La Monumental, a neo-mudejar style building decorated with white and blue tiles, since it was built in 1915. Eight bullfighters have reportedly also died after being gored.

    The only other bull ring in Catalonia was the 'Las Arenas de Barcelona' that closed in 1977 and laid empty for decades before finally being turned into a commercial shopping complex. I took a walk past on a recent trip to Barcelona not knowing what the building was but noting that it was definitely empty. A quick look on Google later that night managed to peak my interest when I realised what it was and having read some interesting history on it. Fast forward one night and I was back again, this time with the GF and a camera although unfortunately she was unable to get in. I only managed around an hour or so inside before getting frustrated with the light but I would still rank it as one of the better places I've seen this year. I could quite easily spend a few hours in there checking out all the unseen spaces and smaller details of the building (something I was unable to do this time). Standing in the middle of the arena was pretty surreal but ever so slightly unnerving at the same time, especially being so dark and a solo mooch. Almost as if there were constantly a set of eyes on you and had someone been sat in the stands at the back, you would have been none the wiser. Given the chance I'd be happy to go back in the day, get a better look around and grab some decent shots but these will do for now. Of course I remembered to snatch a handful of sand on the way out as a small memento. Apologies for there not being a huge variety however this is something that doesn't pop up too much so hoping that will compensate.

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    #1 dicky21, Sep 15, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2013
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