2011 May 9

[click on image to enlarge]

The brand new Espacio Metropol Parasol, known locally, for obvious reasons, as the “Setas” (Mushrooms), rears its head like some giant, modernistic sculpture above the Plaza de la Encarnación, in almost the exact centre of the Casco Antiguo, where its futuristic latticework construction and fluid, curved appearance are in marked contrast to its surroundings. Like a lot of people, at first I wasn’t sure if I loved it or loathed it, but now it feels like it belongs and it’s well worth a visit for a number of reasons, apart from simply gawping.

Underneath the structure is the Antiquarium, where you can view the Roman ruins uncovered when work on the site began. At ground level is the Encarnación Market, above which is a plaza in the shade of the parasols. I think the space is rather bare, and prefer the shade of the big trees on the other side of the square, but perhaps too much clutter would interfere with its intended use for concerts and other events. You can also take the lift up to the mirador/walkway at the top of the parasols, which opened last Wednesday, and enjoy the breathtaking panorama of the city below. A circular restaurant where you will be able to enjoy the view over a meal and a drink is due to open soon.

I went up to the top of the parasol on Friday and have to say I enjoyed the curviness of the structure as much as the fabulous views. I could also see my cat in the upstairs window of my rooftop terrace, which felt… odd. Can’t wait to go up at night.

Opening hours: 10am – 2pm / 5.30 – 10pm
Cost: 2 euros for non-residents


6 Responses leave one →
  1. May 9, 2011

    I popped there too this weekend and must say that I warmed a little more to it – the view of the Cathedral is lovely and I enjoyed the mosaics in the museum – I’m still only lukewarm though!

    • azahar permalink*
      May 15, 2011

      It’s become one of my favourite places lately, especially as I live nearby and the market is so close. I think it’s really perked the area up.

  2. Tony Whelan permalink
    July 30, 2013

    Hi, just wondering if someone would know whether the small Jamon , wine & sherry stall has moved to this new market ? At the old market hall it was in the next isle from the fish stalls , further back from the restaurant set up in the middle , unfortunately I have forgotten the name. It was only small but it used to do a tasting session per-booked for Saturdays.
    Regards Tony

    • azahar permalink*
      July 30, 2013

      Hi Tony,
      I don’t remember a small jamón and sherry stall in the old market, nor a restaurant set up in the middle. Perhaps you’re thinking of a different market?

      • Tony Whelan permalink
        July 30, 2013

        If you took a right from the Bullring walk up two blocks turn right then left it was in the market hall there. We always enter from Calle Genil . Hope this helps , we haven’t been since Jan 2012 but it was there for two years we know about. The guy who owned used to have a shop ( wine merchant so he said ) in town up until the economic downturn . Hope this helps you understand where we go.

        • azahar permalink*
          July 30, 2013

          Sounds like you’re talking about the Arenal Market. This is the Encarnación Market.

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