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Miralles Tagliabue EMBT completes Maggie’s Centre in Barcelona

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Miralles Tagliabue EMBT’s 400m² pavilion-like Maggie’s sits within a UNESCO World Heritage Site

Kálida Sant Pau Centre, which opened earlier this month, is situated in the Art Nouveau UNESCO World Heritage Site of Barcelona and is the first Maggie’s Centre to be completed in mainland Europe. Part of the Maggie’s charity programme and following its UK predecessors, the centre is based at a hospital site, in this case the Sant Pau Hospital.

Maggie’s, a charity registered in Scotland, currently operates drop-in centres across the UK and Hong Kong, with their first opening in Edinburgh in 1996, designed by Richard Murphy Architects. For Spain, this is the first building of its kind. Like many other Maggie’s, the spatial concept for the design of the Barcelona centre is focused on a main space with a kitchen and communal kitchen table.

© lluc miralles embt (35)

Formally, the design consists of a 400m² pavilion next to a garden and is placed between the old and new hospitals. The building helps shape a new topography for the inner park by straddling two differing levels, while access from the hospital’s oncology department is marked by a wall with a single door opening directly up to the garden. 

The ground floor has been conceived as a multipurpose space surrounding the double-height main area at the heart of the building. Inherent flexibility has been designed in by providing large sliding doors which can divide up the room as needed. All rooms offer views out to the garden and surrounding buildings of the Art Nouveau area. From higher up within the hospital, Kálida Sant Pau can be recognised by its green ceramic tiled roof. 

© lluc miralles embt (19)

The architect has designed the facade as brick with glazed ceramic insertions in a composition of varying colours and textures. Wooden detailing and the carpentry of an external wooden pergola are inspired by greenery shapes existing in the garden. The use of ceramic latticework and wooden blinds allow views out as well as a sense of privacy. 

The project has been led by architect Benedetta Tagliabue, who set up the practice Miralles Tagliabue EMBT with her partner Enric Miralles in 1994.

Embt centro kálida plan

Project data 

Start on site April 2017
Completion May 2019
Gross internal floor area 400m²
Gross (internal + external) floor area 1,350m²
Form of contract or procurement route Direct commission (Spain)
Construction cost €1.85 million 
Construction cost per m² €2,770
Architect Miralles Tagliabue EMBT
Client Kálida Foundation. Other stakeholders Nous Cims, Fundació Privada de l’Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau, Maggie’s Centres
Structural engineer Bernúz Fernández Arquitectes SLP
M&E consultant PYF SL
QS Borrell Jover SLP
Landscape consultant Miralles Tagliabue EMBT
Interior design Patricia Urquiola Studio
Main contractor Construcciones Pérez Villora SA

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Readers' comments (1)

  • Absolutely fabulous! The best Maggies yet, warm and welcoming yet stimulating and exciting. Best building if 2019 so far.
    Simon Gill

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