Jávea U3A
 

Travel

Visit to Monestery San Miguel de las Reyes and Lladro Factory and Museum

A group of Jávea U3A Members visited the Monesterio San Miguel on the outskirts of Valencia city, which has a varied history.  The Cistercion Monestery of Sant Bernat de Rascanya was first built on the site in the 13th century in the gothic style, it was occupied by the abbots of Santa Maria de la Vallidigna. 
It had a prominent position looking across the Mediterranean.  The view is no longer there as the land around has been developed over the centuries.

In the 15th century, the Viceroys of Valencia, Germaine de Foix and her third husband Ferdinand of Aragon, Duke of Cabria then founded a monastery to house their family vault.  It was designed by the Architect Alonso de Covarrubias and is one of the most outstanding works of the Renaissance in Valencian lands. 
Some parts, including the church, were completed later, during the Baroque period.

After the confiscation the building was abandoned until 1874, when it was decided to build a prison. 
This new use has led to the creation of two large pavilions and a courtyard in the north.

The building is now Biblioteca Valenciana and has been totally renovated.  Its library keeps more than a million documents.  The materials are varied: manuscripts, prints from the 15th – 21st century, photographic and cartographic materials, amongst others.  Users have virtual tours, online catalogs or channels in social networks.  In this perspective the Biblioteca Valenciana Digital (BIVALDI) is remarkable. 
Our guide Sonia gave us an interesting, innovative and descriptive tour.

The coach then drove us around the corner to the house where the Lladro brothers were born and spent their childhood.  They began their interest in creating ceramic figurines in the 1950’s, some of which are displayed in the house.  The house itself is furnished as it would have been in the 19th/20th century with many orginal tiles and furniture.  It is built in a typical narrow, winding street in the small town of Tavernes Blanques
One of the three brothers still lives in the same street; the other two now live in Valencia.

Our final stop was to the large Factory and Museum, where all the Lladro figurines are created.  We were given a short film show, and then taken through the factory where we were able to see the different processes which go into creating the beautiful and intricate pieces.  The pieces displayed are stunning, many of which one could not imagine were made of ceramic.  If you haven’t been, it’s well worth the journey.

Photographs by Geof Eley and Clive White.

Click the first thumbnail to see the slideshow.

Valencia-Monestery-2014
01 Monestrery San Miguel de las Reyes
01 Monestrery San Miguel de las Reyes
02 Sun coming out
02 Sun coming out
03
03
04 Cloisters
04 Cloisters
05 Cloisters
05 Cloisters
06 Basilica
06 Basilica
07 Ceiling Rose
07 Ceiling Rose
08 Older Cloisters and prison buildings
08 Older Cloisters and prison buildings
09
09
10 One remaining arch
10 One remaining arch
11 Back outside - Three Kings
11 Back outside - Three Kings
12 Strange sculpture
12 Strange sculpture
13
13
14
14
20 On the way to Lladro Museum
20 On the way to Lladro Museum
21
21
22
22
30 Lladro Museum
30 Lladro Museum
31
31
32
32
33 Designers workroom
33 Designers workroom
34
34
35 Looking down the well
35 Looking down the well
36
36
40 Lladro Factory
40 Lladro Factory
41
41
42 Inside the display area
42 Inside the display area
43
43
44
44
45
45
46 Huge Pool - needed cleaning
46 Huge Pool - needed cleaning
47 Your move
47 Your move
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