The Barcelona Universal Exposition

In the late 19th century Barcelona was a city with potential, mostly thanks to the organisation of the Universal Exposition of 1888, which provided a great opportunity for the economic development and international renown of the city.

  • The inauguration of the Barcelona Universal Exposition.
  • Aerial view of the 1888 Barcelona Universal Exposition complex.
  • The Three Dragons Castle, the cafe-restaurant for the Exposition, by Lluís Domènech i Montaner.
  • The Three Dragons Castle, by Lluís Domènech i Montaner.
  • General view of the 1888 Barcelona Universal Exposition.
  • Geology Museum by Antoni Rovira i Trias.
  • Companyia Transatlàntica pavilion by Gaudí for the Barcelona Universal Exposition.
  • Arc de Triomf by Josep Vilaseca, built as the entrance to the Exposition.
  • Gran Hotel Internacional, by Lluís Domènech i Montaner, a temporary structure to accommodate visitors to the Exposition.

The event was held in the Ciutadella area (with the Arc de Triomf as the entrance) and was opened by King Alphonse XIII, Queen Maria Cristina and the mayor of Barcelona Francesc Rius i Taulet.

The hosting of the fair was a demonstration of the city's economic vitality and the good relations between the restored monarchy and the Catalan industrial middle class.

Eusebi Güell wanted the opening of Güell Palace to coincide with the Exposition, and many of the rooms in the Palace were used for receptions and various functions.


Website on the Barcelona Universal Exposition of 1888.