Garay House

This house is interesting because it is one of the best examples of the “neo-basque” style in Madrid. It was built by Basque architecht Manuel María Smith Ybarra, known for his buildings for rich businessmen in the area of Neguri near Bilbao, for Antonio Garay Vitorica, a rich congressman (Vitoria, 1874) who came to live in Madrid from the Basque Country. He had huge lands all around Spain and mostly lived from the money he obtained from them. He was one of the most powerful men at the beginning of the 20th Century and, in order to show it, ordered this palace in one of the best places of Madrid at that time.

His heriteers sold the palace to the Embassy of Belgium and in 1977 to the Spanish Association of Engineers of Roads and Ports, which is the current owner. Two things are remarkable in the house, in which Smith was helped by Secundino Zuazo:
– The tower, very typical of all regional styles in Spain.
– The roof of the entrance, which draws a Basque country house (“caserío”).
– Some windows look pretty Arabic, which explains why this building is some times described as more neo-romantic or neo-regional than just neo-basque.

Wikipedia has nice pictures of this building:
800px-Casa_Garay_(Madrid)_05 by . 800px-Casa_Garay_(Madrid)_03 by .

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