• Spain's news in English
Spain recoils at yet another botched restoration attempt
The new windows are not to everyone's taste... Screen grab: Atlas España

Spain recoils at yet another botched restoration attempt

Jessica Jones · 31 May 2016, 12:30

Published: 31 May 2016 12:30 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Spain has a chequered history when it comes to restoring its ancient treasures. For every beautifully-preserved Alhambra there is an Ecce Homo - the painting of Jesus that was infamously "restored" on the cheap by wannabe artist Celia Giménez.  

Celia Giménez's restoration of Ecce Homo, dubbed "Monkey Jesus". Photo: AFP

The latest failed restoration project concerns a 400-year-old tower, whose owners have bizarrely decided to install modern aluminium windows, much to the distaste of locals.

"It’s terrible, absolutely terrible," a local woman said in an interview with Spanish newspaper ABC when questioned about the "improvements" to the 17th Century Riazón tower in the town of Ombreiro in the northwestern region of Galicia.

The tower is considered "of cultural interest" and is on Spain’s list of national heritage register but is currently in a state of dilapidation.

"When you intervene in a protected site it is essential to look at the forensics of the building to be able to undertake the task with the utmost vigour," architect Carlos Quevedo Rojas told The Local on Tuesday.

"This did clearly not happen in this case," he said. "Even when it comes to incorporating carpentry work you have to be so careful about the detail."

Quevado is himself no stranger to controversy after his restoration of a ninth century Moorish castle hit the headlines for its less-than-conventional look (see photograph below). 

Story continues below…

Screen grab: La Sexta

But the Spanish architect perhaps had the last laugh when his design won a prestigious architecture award.

Spanish authorities have been often criticized for failing to preserve some of the country’s most important historical sites. In August 2015 a town in Galicia installed a concrete picnic table on top of an archeological site when builders confused a Neolithic tomb with broken stone picnic bench. 

For more news from Spain, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

Jessica Jones (jessica.jones@thelocal.com)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Spain worries about tourism future
Photo: Josep Lago / AFP file picture

After basking in its best tourist summer season in 15 years, Spain now sees dark clouds on the horizon as popular destinations reach saturation point and holidaymakers are more thrifty, industry experts say.

Spain’s Socialists meet to decide on veto
The Socialists are meeting Saturday to decide on whether to lift a veto on the minority conservative government or not. Photo: Gerard Julien/ AFP

Spain's embattled Socialists gather Sunday for a crunch strategy meeting expected to see the party lift its veto on a minority conservative government and finally unblock the country's ten-month political deadlock.

Spain's 'Napflix' aims to bore viewers to sleep
Photo: Screengrab/ Napflix

A Spanish video platform called Napflix, designed to put people to sleep with dull content, was launched this week and its founders are on the lookout for more "monotony and repetition."

Recipe: How to make fabada - traditional Asturian bean stew
Photo: Flavio Lorenzo Sánchez/Flickr

The hearty Asturian dish is a perfect lunch on a cold day... and don't forget the crusty bread and cider!

Brit 'paedo' held on Costa del Sol after Most Wanted appeal

One of Britain's most wanted fugitives was arrested on the Costa Del Sol following a tip-off from an expat just hours after his face appeared on a public appeal.

Spain's parliament approves deficit reduction measures
Photo: Images Money/Flickr

Spanish lawmakers approved on Thursday measures to reduce the public deficit and keep it under the target agreed with the European Union.

'Cubism and War' show opens at Barcelona Picasso Museum
Pablo Picasso Harlequin and Woman with a Necklace. Photo: MP

Barcelona's Picasso Museum unveiled an exhibition on "Cubism and War" on Thursday depicting how one of the most influential artistic styles of the 20th century survived the First World War.

Why this bionic limb pioneer doesn't believe in disability
Hugh Herr has been award Spain's top science prize. Photo: FPA

The Local speaks to Hugh Herr on winning Spain's top science prize and how being an amputee doesn't make him disabled.

Dine in the buff at Spain's first nudist restaurant
A buffet of organic food will be served on "human tables". Photo: Innato / Facebook

Spain's first naked dining experience is to arrive on the island of Tenerife following the success of a similar venture in London.

Spain's top court overturns bullfighting ban in Catalonia
Photo: AFP

Spain's Constitutional Court on Thursday cancelled a bullfighting ban in Catalonia in what is likely to exacerbate tensions between Madrid and the separatist region, and between animal activists and fans of the tradition.

Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
Madrid parish church faces fine over 'too noisy' bells
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Celebrate expat life at Madrid’s THRIVE convention
Fury after kids told to bring their own loo roll to school
Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
Disney announces plans for Don Quixote action movie
Activist tells 8-yr-old matador wannabe with cancer 'just die'
King to make last minute push to avoid third vote in Spain
Amazing photos of Catalonia's 'human tower' contest
What's on in Spain: October 2016
'No way, Jose! You'll never get your hands on our Rock'
Recipe: How to make a classic Spanish tortilla de patatas
Chorizo in paella? Go back to cooking school Jamie Oliver
Spain in eye of a perfect storm after 10 months without govt
Thousands share clips of life for 'Spain in a Day' film
Ten incredible Spain locations for Game of Thrones season 7
Analysis & Opinion
Why moving to Spain could be the best decision of your life
Seven reasons why autumn is the very best season in Spain
Spanish study finds four types of personality. Which are you?
New search underway for civil war grave of poet Lorca
Bison found decapitated on Valencia nature reserve
Forgotten Voices: What Brits in Spain think about Brexit
One dead and 14 injured in blast at Spanish resort
Game of Thrones want extras 'with muscles' to film in Spain
Thousands march in Madrid to push for bullfighting ban
jobs available