Torre del Governador's Romantic Garden recovery in Alella

Torre del Governador of Alella is a group of buildings surrounded by gardens that make up a single farm, characterized by its strong eclecticism: neoclassical façades, neo-gothic mixed with neo-Arabic, classical columns supporting horseshoe arches, brick combined with stone, decorative glass facades and decks and classic sculptures that coexist with tree-lined walks. Within the various gardens of the estate, we find the Romantic Garden, possibly the most significant for the diversity of vegetation, the changing topography and the unique architectural elements that make it up. The whole is of particular architectural, heritage, historical, social and landscape interest, so it is part of the Architectural Heritage Inventory of Catalonia.


The history of this property goes back to the 14th century. In the middle of the 16th century, Enric de Cardona i de Erill, governor of Catalonia, acquired it and gave it the name it is known today. In 1890 it passed into the hands of Antoni Borrell i Folch, who played an important role, until his death in 1910, when the estate was transferred, by testamentary will that the assets be passed to usufruct of a religious institution. In 1916, his executors and the provincial father of the Pies Schools signed the cession of Torre del Governador to this institution. This is how the Borrell Institution of the Pia d'Alella School was created, led by the board and managed by the religious order.


Torre del Governdor estate belonged to the Pia School until 2001. During those years, the buildings and gardens were adapted to the uses that were required as a school. This meant a transformation of spaces and a loss of original elements. From 2001 to 2014, the estate was owned by real estate agents and finally by banks. This led to the rapid degradation of buildings and gardens, due to poor maintenance and uncontrolled vandalism. In 2015 the farm was acquired by a new owner who made an initial intervention consisting of clearing and general cleaning to identify the different spaces of the same, the ornamental and vegetal elements, the state of the roads ... and thus being able to evaluate the conservation status of the garden. With the aim of recovering Torre del Governador, preserving and rehabilitating all elements of the original set, as well as developing a hotel project that includes health treatment areas.


Torre del Governador's Romantic Garden has an area of 17,089 m2 and a whole series of unique elements such as the various stone walls and rocks of containment of the earth, the Lake de los Plataners, the Lake of the Paseo, the Lake of the Font del Granado, the Romantic Temple, the Bridge of the two Towers, the Romantic Temple, the Catenary Arch Bridge flanked by two towers that safeguards the Torrent de Can Bernades, the Watchtower accessing the Paseo de los Plataners or the Statues, the Lake of the Cassola, the grotto or gallery of the Romantic Garden, the agricultural warehouse, the several statues and the banana trees that comprise of the stroll to which they give name.


The project proposes to consolidate, rehabilitate and restore each of the elements described above, so that the degradation state can be stopped and that each element maintains and / or regains its presence and functionality within the Romantic Garden. At the same time, it is also proposed to recover the irrigation water so that the original species of the garden that have survived the years of neglect can be preserved; with its own water resources.


The aim of the project is to make an initial intervention in those elements that have been considered to be those that need the most urgency. There are about twenty proposed performances, but they are only part of the necessary ones to be able to see the Romantic Garden again in its glory. Therefore, the intention is to carry out these actions so that once executed, a second intervention may be proposed, which would contain more aesthetically effective actions, visually such as regaining the functioning of decorative water elements, restoring the preserved statues. , recover the Lake of the Romantic Temple, rehabilitate the Bridge of the Two Towers, recover and rehabilitate the Bridge that crosses the Riera, recover the operation of the natural irrigation network by gravity, recover the use of the underground grotto, reproduce the statues disappeared, recover the water games that are known to have existed and recover all the disappeared vegetation.

location : Alella

promoter : Private

architect : Guillem Carrera

structure : Jordi Masdeu

topography : Altiplà Serveis Topogràfics SLP

geotechnics : Geotec Estudis Geotècnics i Mediambientals SL

collaborators : Daniel Marcelo, Alex Mejon, Núria Merlo, Jordi Masdeu, Rècop Restauracions Arquitectòniques SL, Chroma Restauració del Patrimoni Arquitectònic SL, Paisatgisme Melsió SLU

project's year : 2017

surface : 17.089 m2