The market of El Borne in Barcelona is an example of how the restoration of historical buildings allows humanity to look back at its past, in order to bring the present to today’s reality. Today, the exact place where the life of the citizens of Barcelona in Medieval times has become a space dedicated to social and cultural purposes, that has contributed to reactivate life in the neighbourhood.
This market, which today is known as the Borne Cultural Centre (BCC), accumulates an extensive history regarding the use given throughout time. The original market of El Borne was inaugurated in 1876. For more than 40 years it was the market of the neighbourhood of La Ribera, and where the commercial activity in the area took place. In 1920 it would become a fruit and vegetable market, until it was finally relocated to Mercabarna in 1971.
But the history of this market goes further. After some years closed, politicians decided to use this site to accommodate the new Provincial Library in Barcelona.
However, during the construction there was some incredible archaeological findings of what once was the neighbourhood of La Ribera during Medieval times.
Around 8,000 square metres of archaeological remains in perfect condition that allows us to learn what the neighbourhood was like, until it was demolished and devastated in 1714 during the War of Spanish Succession.
With this discovery, it was decided to locate the new library outside this building to recover and conserve these archaeological findings and integrate them into what is now the new market of El Borne. A cultural exhibition centre that brings back life to the neighbourhood, and encourages neighbours to discover what life was like for the people that lived there in the past.
After 12 years of refurbishment, today there is a dedicates area of the market that holds a permanent exhibition with over 1800 found objects, and through which the way of life at the beginning of the XVIII is explained, as well as the siege that the city and its inhabitants suffered in 1714, when the city was destroyed by the Borbon troops of Philip V.
Also, this cultural centre also hosts regularly various gastronomic activities and events. As a result, life has been reactivated in the neighbourhood to involve neighbours in a wide range of activities.
But, in addition, the market has become a place of great tourist interest, since it has recovered part of the original building, with its stunning metallic iron structures forced to integrate into the current design.
If you are in Barcelona do not miss the opportunity to visit the new market of the Borne. Join the fun by participating in some of its activities. Walk through the bridge that connects the Born with the Ciudadela Park. Come and discover its history and knows what life was like centuries ago
We encourage you to discover the charms of the new market of El Borne. There is no way to do so better than staying at one of Petit Palace’s hotels in Barcelona, from where you can visit the most iconic landmarks of the city, such as the Cathedral of Barcelona or the Ramblas.