AMERICAN MERCHANTS ROUTE

This route starts at the Interpretation Centre and runs through some of the manor houses and establishments of commerce with America on Real, Ancha and Cruz Verde streets. The route visits the Fortified Dock of the city and, from there, goes towards Santo Domingo Street, with a marked colonial air and presided over by the Petit Torre, an 18th century lookout tower, to end up in the Town Hall, the old manor house of the Byass family, winemakers. The route can be complemented with a visit to El Trocadero Island, but please note that visits must be arranged in advance and expressly authorized.

1 INTERPRETATION CENTRE

The Interpretation Centre is a museistic space designed to discover the history, the near past and the present of the city. A place to know the city’s way of life, the life of its citizens, their experiences, traditions and the city’s cultural heritage, and a perfect way to start any tourist route in Puerto Real.

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2 BAROQUE FAÇADES

Three elements stand out in the urban appearance of Puerto Real. First, the singular layout of its streets, in the shape of a checkerboard; second, its marked colonial air as a result of the shared history between the two shores of the Atlantic Ocean; third, the  abundance of Baroque façades that decorate Puerto Real houses. The city’s boom during the 18th century as a result of the transfer of Casa de Contratación to Cadiz in 1717 explains this abundance, for it attracted to the Villa many merchants, aristocrats and illustrious sailors that built their houses in Puerto Real. Here you can find only some examples of what you can find in your tour.

3 CRUZ VERDE STREET

This is one of the streets in the urban center of Puerto Real that better reflects the noble aspect it had during the 17th century. Visitors should not miss the magnificent buildings between La Plaza and Amargura streets. It is precisely there where the niche containing the cross that names the street lies. Note that the Green Cross was typically related to the Spanish Inquisition.

4 FORTIFIED PIER

The pier was fortified by Cadiz born architect Torcuato Benjumeda in the late 18th century from a 16th century pre existing one. It was aimed to cover the needs of the city’s port from specially from 1717, when Casa de la Contratación was transferred to Cadiz. In addition, it provided the city with a space for first defense against possible maritime attacks.

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5 PETIT TORRE

This is a building with a lookout tower built in the 18th century. It occupies a large plot located between the streets Amargura and Ribera del Muelle towards which stands. Lookout towers in the Bay of Cadiz are architectural elements, typically found at 17th and 18th centuries buildings, that emphasize the connection between life, business and the sea. These towers are, hence, located near it. This lookout tower, made from ostionera stone, is square shaped, has two floors and wood paneling inside. It was once property of the Terry family, wine producers.

6  CITY ARCHIVES

This colonial style house, built by Diego Ojeda, merchant of the city, was the residence of the Marquis of Montefuerte since the mid 19th century. The building is a patio-house with remarcable ornamental elements, such as the montera that covers the main patio.

7 TOWN HALL

The current building of the Consistorial House was, in its origins, one of the most important manor houses in the city. It was built by the Byass family, which occupied it for at least a century. The City Council established its headquarters there in 1910. As a curiosity, the chimes of the clock that mark the hours on its façade, sound at o’clock and, again, after two minutes. Inside, the Plenary Hall stands out, presided over by the institutional coat of arms of the town and, on the other side, an important canvas by the 19th century painter Justo Ruiz Luna.  

8 EL TROCADERO ISLAND

El Trocadero, which names the Parisian emblematic square, has an abundant and rich history. Area of important commercial traffic since the 16th century, is in the mid 18th with the settlement of the Consulado de Cargadores de Indias, when it experienced its greatest development. The battle of the Trocadero, in August 1823, gave it European fame. Today, in addition to housing several military constructions, such as Fort San Luis, and naval 18th century facilities, it is a space of special importance from the natural and ornithological point of view that can only be visited with express authorization.