Monday, February 11, 2013

Icons of Tenerife (part 1): Santa Cruz Auditorium

Tenerife's most iconic site is without any doubt El Teide volcano. It is really an outstanding natural feature but there are some other interesting places which are equally worth mentioning and one of them is the auditorium of Santa Cruz de Tenerife.

Officially known as Auditorio Adán Martín, this new building has quicly become an unmissable touristic spot, as well as an essential part of the cultural life of Santa Cruz. It opened in 2003 and was designed by Santiago Calatrava, featuring some of his trademarks such as curved lines and white materials. The auditorium is located facing the sea and is just beside one of Tenerife's old fortifications and it looks especially beautiful when the sun is setting, as all the tiny white tiles covering the auditorium reflect the sunlight in all directions shining brightly. The area surrounding is has been beautifully transformed into a leisure area in the style of Canarian architect César Manrique. There is a terrace bar, a swimming-pools complex and a museum dedicated to palmtrees. César Marique is especially renowned for his efforts to preserve the unique environment of his home island, Lanzarote, and this can be appreciated in all his designs which integrate perfectly with nature and make the most of local raw materials. I'm not a big fan of Calatrava but I really like this auditorium and I think that it fits very well the organic surroundings designed in Manrique style, which is not an easy task.

If you take a closer look at the auditorium you might notice that there's a small ball keeping the body and the roof of the auditorium together. A friend of mine who studies architecture told me that calculations for the design of the auditorium were not properly done, so when pieces were pulled together after being built in the mainland, the roof wouldn't stand on its own so a quick solution had to be improvised. Hence the concrete ball pulling pieces together so that the roof does not collapse.

But this was just a little unfortunate mistake that hasn't prevented the auditorium of Santa cruz to become one of the most emblematic buildings in Spain and ar architectural icon of the Canary Islands. Besides, more and more events are programmed there each year, including the season programme of the symphonic orchestra of Tenerife, musicals and a festival dedicated to film soundtracks music. And not only locals are proud and tourists enjoy it, some companies and singers have also profited from the auditorium beauty including it in commercials and music videos. As a proof, here's Lloyd Banks showing off his bling bling around my hometown!


  1. Irene, this is so cool and I had no idea about this place Santa Cruz. It really is amazing when traveling can do and how many places you can see. I'll add this to my places to visit. Thanks for your sweet comment too about your Engagement. I want to hear your story now :) hehe


  2. This is amazing work of architecture, Irene. It's a sculptural work or art as well imagining how they constructed the form.

  3. Irene, what a fabulous piece of architecture! It's funny, I would've never known that they had to build another piece to overlay on the other that was built. HAHAHA Ahhhh, the stories behind things is truly awesome. Well it's gorgeous!!! Thanks for sharing this :D

  4. I loved the reading , it was very interesting to know about this auditorium,and its architech( because of its shape I supposed it was made by Calatrava, it is very characteristic of him )Kisses:)

  5. Que bonito, no lo conocia.


  6. I love your blog!! Great post as well. I'm your newest follower :) Would you mind checking out our blog & following back via GFC and Bloglovin'? Looking forward to your next post! xx


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