Following the route of Latin Americans

The Latin American footprint

Following the route of Latin Americans

The Latin American footprint

Great faces of the buildings, ornamented gratings, galleries, patios, balconies, private chapels, wonderful gardens, handicrafts, high ladders, viewpoints, domes ... All they are the characteristic elements of ostentatious architecture that keep a singular shape and symmetry which became trendy thanks to all those Spanish men and women immigrants who spent a long time in Latin America. These people opposed to those called «the Latin Americans of rope-soled sandals», who suffered the misfortune of immigration, finally made big fortunes in the new continent. When at last they backed for good to Spain, they interceded to change the rural aspect of their native towns by building big houses of different floors while showing their richness and fortunes as well as they also tried to make a display of the best of their new social status.

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In Colombres, Ribadedeva, the rich Latin Americans change strongly the physical appearance of a rural town into a modern one, with a colorful and exotic architecture. The main urban references of this town are the Town Council, the Baroque Church or the Fifth of Guadalupe all built around an elliptic square, thanks to the money brought from America.

All of the Latin Americans' houses of this municipality have a high palm tree as a symbol of a class which left no doubt about the origin of so much money: America. And the towers that since the Asturian Middle Ages are a clear element of distinction, of nobility and of power, were they remained here by those Latin Americans to ennoble their latest social ascent. Their inner desire was to show their luxury and richness that they got the faces of the buildings full of classic and Baroque references as well as regionalist symbols.

The Latin American architecture route

We can finally divide all these properties into singular and rich palaces and modernist mansions; an unusual mixture which used the most famous architects of that time who gave shape to these new and sometimes ridiculous elements, building genuine mansions with a proper name. The Latin American architecture is genuine not copied from any other it is a new entity that deserves to be known. In Ribadedeva, one of the most famous councils for this kind of architecture, you have proposed to show your inner splendor of them through a route in which we can find more than ten of these representative and beautiful constructions. Today most of them belong to individuals so they are not open to public but, it is known that they are well-conserved and still remain the time they were built. Printed papers, silks, curtains, mirrors, old furniture, lamps and elements made of bronze are proofs of their good state.

To have an idea of ​​their interior, in Colombres, for instance, we can have a visit inside the Quinta of Guadalupe, the Town Council or the House of Stone that today works as the Cultural House and Library.

The whole patrimony of Colombres is one of the most interesting in Latin American architecture and also justified in one of its mansions, La Quinta of Guadalupe was inaugurated in 1987 the Foundation the Latin American Archives and the Immigration Museum. Inside it, it is shown the historical data and memories and also the creations of the latest immigrants which make a visit very worthwhile. The Quinta of Guadalupe has an ulterior patio and two floors of Arabic style, to clear symbol of the fortunes of D. Iñigo Noriega. Its park is one of the best conserved gardens in Asturias, full of many exotic plants and trees.

From Colombres there is a road to Bustio and another road to Villanueva, crossing this population. To the North there are built modern houses that make a contrast between the opulence and the individualism of the constructions of the Latin Americans. And by the South, towards Villanueva the houses are less with one floor and whitened, with an Andalusian aspect which contrasts with the vivid color and variety of the Latin Americans.

Text: © Ramón Molleda for

coordinates Latitude: 43.3745461 Length: -4.5404005


Some of the more interesting houses.

1 Quinta de Guadalupe
2 Casona de Iñigo Noriega Mendoza
3 Ribadedeva's Town Hall
4 Red House
5 Stone House and annex
6 Finca Las Raucas
7 House of the Lions
8 La Solana
9 Twin Houses by Florencio Noriega
10 El Cantu
11 Parish Church of Santa María
12 Quinta Buenavista
13 Villa Delfina (Bustio)
14 The Quinta de Villanueva (Villanueva)
15 La Palmera (Noriega)

Ribadedeva's Tourism Office
Tno And fax: 985 41 23 21

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