Santiponce Itálica


An immense legacy waiting to be discovered

University of Seville (Former Royal Tobacco Factory)


The building where the Vice-chancellor's Office and the University Schools of Philology and Geography and History are located is one of the noblest in the Spanish university, while at the same time it was originally one of the most splendid representations of the industrial architecture of the old regime. This building built in stone during the 18th century was the headquarters of the first tobacco factory established in Europe. 

It occupies an enormous rectangle measuring 185x147 m, the second largest in Spain after El Escorial. Its construction shows Renaissance, Baroque and Neoclassical influences.

It should be highlighted the main entrance, crowned by the monumental statue of Fame, the compositional and ornamental arrangement of which is remarkably Baroque, its two central courtyards, the great double staircase that leads to the Auditorium; and on the outside, the University Chapel and the old prison building, currently the headquarters of the Modern History Department, the moat and the walls that surround the entire enclosure and the gate on the main façade.

Architecturally, it stands out for its general scheme of Renaissance references, with Herrerian airs on its floor plan, courtyards and finishing details on the facades. The facades, made of stone, are modulated by pilasters that rise on a pedestal that runs through the building.

Two areas can be distinguished in the building; an area properly dedicated to manufacturing activity which occupies two thirds of the building and, on the other hand, an so-called palatial area, which would correspond to the entrance on San Fernando Street, comprising the hall, warehouses and dwellings.

Declared a Site of Cultural Interest since 1959, it houses a large part of the most relevant works of art held by the University of Seville.


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