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Plaza Canovas
First Look!
Buildings in Valencia

This is the Xapa House!


The XAPA House


It is an architectural group constituted by 8 buildings between party walls and interior illuminating patios. The group occupies a great island, almost half of a block that faces the Canovas del Castillo Square, Gran Marques del Turia Avenue, Conde Salvatierra and Gravador Esteve Streets.

The project belongs to the architects Antonio Martorel Trilles, Emilio Ferrer Gisber and Carlos Carbonell Panella, 1906-1911. This is the first homogeneous block of housings of Valencia, it is, in spite of the different authorship, a design unit. The organization of the balconies determines a horizontal composition.  

The group is finished off by a serpentine element of floral decoration that reinforces its unit and its horizontality. This horizontality is only  interrupted in the bevels (chamfers), in the prevalence of the vertical rhythms because of the ends and the appearance of miradors and balconies of semicircular and triangular plant. The lobbies and the stairways have different interior treatments, alternating the lining between ceramic and marble. The homogeneous treatment of the ground plant and the mezzanine emphasizes, even more, the importance of the main floor. 

The coalition of floral and geometric elements seems to indicate a desire to synthesize formal aspects of the Art Nouveau and of the Austrian Secession, although the elements belonging to the first type are the ones which carry more importance in the group. 



Dafne González
February 9, 2003.