1. Real Alcázar, Seville – This sumptuous palace and extensive gardens constitute a world of royal luxury. The architectural styles are a blend of mainly Moorish traditions – note the lavish use of the horseshoe arch, glazed tilework and wood ceilings.
2. La Casa de Pilatos – Seville Few palaces are more opulent than this 15th–16th-century mansion. A mix of Mudéjar(Christian-Islamic), Flamboyant Gothic and Renaissance styles, it is also adorned with Classical sculptures, including a 5thcentury BC Greek Athena and important Roman works. A noble residence to this day, it is filled with family portraits and antiques from the last 500 years.
3. Ayuntamiento, Seville – Seville’s town hall dates from the 16th century, with later modifications added in the 19th century. The original sections are in Plateresque style, begun by architect Diego de Riaño in 1526 – note the mix of motifs used on the main façade (on Plaza de San Francisco). Inside, a collection of art features paintings by Zurbarán and Velázquez.
4.Palacio del Marqués de la Gomera, Osuna – This 18th-century palace is a striking example of the Spanish baroque style. The cornice is composed of waves and volutes, lending it a sense of movement. The family escutcheon crowns the carved stone doorway, which also has elaborate pillars. The palace has now been converted into a hotel and restaurant.
5. Alcalá la Real – This Moorish castle, crowning the hill above the town, is the chief attraction here. Created by Granada’s rulers in the 14th century, it incorporates 12th century structures and earlier elements, since the strategically situated town dates from prehistoric times. After the Christian reconquest in 1341 , additions to the fortress continued until the 16th century. The castle keep houses an archaeological Roman relief, Casa de Pilatos museum.
6. Castillo de Santa Catalina, Jaén City – Restored by the Christians, this 13thcentury castle towers above the town and affords spectacular view
7. Palacio de Jabalquinto, Baeza – This splendid 15th-century palaceis a study in originality. The façade’s columns defy categorization, while the gallery evokes the Renaissance style, as does the double-tiered patio. The latter also sports a monumental Baroque staircase Next to the Castillo de Santa Catalina is a parador, built in imitation of its style, where you can stop for a drink .
8. Castillo de Vélez Blanco – In Italian Renaissance style, this structure has the grace of a fairytale castle. Unfortunately, it was gutted in the early 1900s, but a reconstruction of one of the patios gives you some idea of its original splendor.
Author: Caroline Garcia, Holiday Accommodation seville