During the early years of the18th century, as Cádiz grew wealthy on trade with the Americas and Indies, its was decided to replace the old cathedral (Iglesia Santa Cruz) with a new and more lavish building that reflected the citys riches during this golden age. The new cathedral was designed by Vicente Acero, construction began in 1722 funded by the wealthy shipping magnates of the city.
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You might be forgiven for thinking that the cathedral has an “Italian” look and feel as the building combines Spanish architectural tradition with Italian Baroque forms. The plans of Gothic origins also coincided with the works of Italian architects at the time. However, the original plans did go through many changes and directions right up to when the ground was consecrated in 1838
The temple is in the shape of a Latin cross and has three naves, an apse and side chapels. The naves are separated by elliptical pillars with fluted Corinthian columns at the ends. The main façade, framed by two large towers that increase its width, is divided into three sections. The central area houses the main entrance made of stunning white marble.
The octagonal towers are made up of three sections: the first in the Baroque style and the other two in the Neoclassical style. The dome, located on the cross, stands out for the yellow color of the glazed tiles, on whose base you will see the sculptures of the four evangelists.
Inside the Cathedral there are 16 chapels with the most interesting being:
- The chapel San Sebastián stands out as it holds a work by the Genoese artist Andrea Ansaldi painted in 1621.
- The chapels of San Servando and San Germán preserve representative baroque sculptures of the owners. made in 1687 they are the work of Luisa Roldán (known as la Roldana).
- The chapel of Santa Teresa holds the tabernacle of the Corpus Christi procession. This was made of silver between 1649 and 1664 by Alejando Saavedra.
- The main chapel has a circular neoclassical temple made of colored marble and gilt bronze, Built in 1790 by Manuel Machuca.
The crypt, designed by Vicente Acero was completed in 1726. It is organized around a circular space covered by a flat vault, from which various rooms open. Here we find a rectangular space with niches for burials in which, on the head wall, there is a marble Genoese altar from the 17th century with the image of the Virgin of the Rosary. In addition to the bishops of the diocese, Manuel de Falla and José Maria Pemán, illustrious figures from Cádiz, are also buried in the crypt.
- Monday to Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Last visit at 7:15 p.m.
- Sundays: Cathedral from 1:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. and Clock Tower from 12:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. and from 3:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
- Mass: Sundays and holidays at 12:00 p.m.
- General: €7 – Pensioners €6, Students (under 25 years) and groups (more than 20 pax) €5 – Children (under 12 years) free. (The entrance ticket also includes a visit to the Clock Tower).
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