Lost In La Muralla Roja

Right off of Partida Manzanera street in Calpe, Espana, lies one of the most aesthetically pleasing architectural designs in the province of Alicante, the beautiful Muralla Roja, also known as The Red Wall.
Built near a cliff overlooking the beautiful Mediterranean ocean, the fortress like structure stands tall and strong with it’s beautiful blue and pink tones creating a quintessential piece of constructivism.
The mastermind behind the design, Ricardo Bofill, was inspired by the middle eastern casbahs or citadels in North African cities. A combination of stairs, bridges, platforms, and sharp corners make up this magnificent masterpiece.
As you climb the stairs, you are presented with interlocked patios at every corner. The Muralla Roja was built in 1968 and has approximately 50 apartments located inside the premises. Small courtyards, rooftops, gardens, and a beautiful pool exist inside the gated walls.

Now I’d like to share my personal experience staying in this labyrinth.    Before my friends and I booked our room, I had thought that this building was accessible to the public, after some research, I found out that it actually wasn’t. The only way to wander about the fortress is to book a room, so we did so through Airbnb. After my friends helped me move out of my apartment in Burgos, located in the province of Castile y Leon, we took a long bus ride to Valencia and then transferred over to a bus that stopped at every coastal city until it reached Calpe. Once we arrived to the city, we were instructed to pick up our apartment key at a booking agency. From there, we trekked it up a tall hill 45 minutes to the Manzanera neighborhood.  Sweaty and out of breath, my luggage that had provided me with clothing for 10 months was slowly slipping away from my sweaty palms, it could have easily rolled down the hill. Thankfully, after a few pit stops, we saw the signs pointing towards La Muralla Roja. Alas, we were practically there!429fff1b-a82e-4ce5-9ac0-db42e8c09cfcAs we walked up to the gate we were all smiles and ecstatic about our stay. We knew that this was an exclusive experience that only those with the key would be able to have, and we had a key.Our room did not have WiFi, which made our experience even that much more special.  For our three night stay we purchased a sufficient amount of groceries that allowed us to cook breakfast and dinner every morning and night.  f5df19b8-81f5-40fd-be60-79e8ad281573Every morning we would open all of the windows to the apartment and gaze out at the beautiful Mediterranean ocean. The radio would be turned up, food warm and ready to be eaten, and the sun breaking through our room, gently shining on our faces. 36104b9e-d23d-4bdf-9a71-d282f27f2747In case you’re wondering, yes we did indulge on some food from the region, please refer to my previous blog. Paella here is a must! Every day we would discover new passage ways and doors to unlock in the human cross word puzzle. Calpe isn’t necessarily a persons travel destination when they think of Spain but now having stayed here, I will recommend it to anyone travelling to the east of the country. It isn’t as populated with tourist and there’s tons of breathing room to walk and enjoy the food without stressing out. On top of that, the beaches are beautiful and if you decide to stay in one of the Manzanera architectural developments, your experience will be heightened, literally.

 

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