The historic nineteenth century Barrabino mansion in Torremolinos will soon open its doors once again for the first time in more than 20 years.
The former residence of María Barrabino, a woman whose big-heartedness earned her the title of 'benefactor of the needy', was purchased by the Torremolinos town hall in September. The grand palatial home will now be renovated and turned into a cultural, artistic and exhibition centre.
Work on the nineteenth century house began last Monday and this marked the first phase of the pedestrianisation of the centre of Torremolinos. The inauguration was attended by the Mayor of Torremolinos, José Ortiz, and the granddaughter and great-granddaughter of María Barrabino, the owners of the property prior to the council acquiring it for 1.1 million euros last month.
Built in 1862, and uninhabited since 1996, the house will be a key feature in the renovation of the Plaza Costa del Sol. The overhaul, which is expected to take four months, will respect the exterior and interior structure, returning the house to its former glory and regaining its role as the architectural backbone of the town. The grounds of the house are to be opened to allow direct access to the Plaza Picasso and the Iglesia de Buen Consejo.
The renovation of the house and the Plaza Costa del Sol, an investment which will cost the town hall approximately 3.8 million euros, will be overseen by architect, Salvador Moreno Peralta.
The Plaza Costa del Sol will be re-designed to include an emblematic pergola, shaded green areas, ponds, fountains and water features. The introduction of the water features, along with reinstalling to its original location of the old fountain in the square, will enforce the strong connection Torremolinos has with water.
José Ortiz stressed that the project is like a window that will connect the present and the past, saying: “We are doing what other towns have done; retrieve our geographical centre, our heritage and our history. We are going to add a unique space of cultural, architectural, and artistic importance that will have an incalculable value for the future.”
The renovation of the streets and squares that surround the Plaza Costa del Sol should be complete by the summer season of 2018.