Centro Botín: appointment with art in Santander

Paseo exterior Valencia azotea y exteriores centro Botín en Santander

Art has a must in Santander at the Botín Center: a space created for the development of creativity through the world of arts and culture.

Centro Botín, a date with art and creation

Santander has a meeting place at Centro Botín, an art center inaugurated in June 2017 that I was fortunate to be able to visit in person and that aspires to be part of the international circuit of art centers through the dissemination of culture and the training of the arts.

With its characteristic silhouette, Centro Botín has managed, in a very short time, to become an architectural landmark of Santander and be part of the daily life of the inhabitants of the city. It is already, in its own right, a meeting place that has significantly revitalized the life of the city thanks to the development of activities based on art, music, cinema, theatre, literature or dance.

Renzo Piano and the Botín Center

The building and the urban project of the environment in which it is located have the unmistakable seal of the architect’s studio Renzo Piano. The architectural work of Piano -awarded the Pritzker Prize in 1998- is located in the emblematic Pereda Gardens, an environment that was dedicated to commercial docks, warehouses and shipping companies in the 19th century.

With the architectural intervention undertaken around the Botín Center, the gardens have doubled their extension and tripled the green areas that reach the sea. It has been saved -in this way- an architectural barrier that divided the gardens in two with a road that disconnected the invisible loop that joined the center of the city with its own bay.

Exterior edificio Valencia escaleras exteriores y vistas al mar
Paisaje mar escaleras exteriores centro Botín en Santander.

The Botín Center and its surroundings

In the architectural and landscape project the building is as important as the public spaces that surround it: the north and west squares serve as a stage for performing arts, audiovisual projections and training activities. With the construction of the Centro Botín has managed to recover the invisible loop that linked the city center with its bay through almost four hectares that restore pedestrian access to the sea.

Erected between the gardens and the Cantabrian Sea, the Botín Center is cantilevered over the sea and on land: as if it did not suffer the effects of the force of gravity on its foundations, the Center floats at the height of the treetops through whose leaves you can discover step by step. The structure, formed by light walkways composed of steel and glass -called pachinko- separates the two volumes that make up the Botín Center and gives rise to a new public square that rises above ground level. From there they start stairs and elevators that go into the Botín Center: a floating architectural mass that stands 20 meters above the sea.

Escaleras exterior Madrid centro Botín
Centro Botín zona espacios del museo.

Centro Botín, living architecture to unify the city

Its interesting lobular shape is the result of a thorough architectural study: the design of this structure showed that rounded shapes would allow the ground floor to enjoy more light -a great decorative tool as I always like to highlight- while maximizing the excellent views from the gardens to the sea.

The Booty Center looks like an organic being breathing through scales. The façades of its two volumes are covered with 270,000 circular pieces of pearly ceramics that reflect the rays of the sun, the sparkles of the crystal water of the Cantabrian Sea and the unique light of Cantabria.

Laura Yerpes | decoration and interior design

Images: Fundación Botín and Centro Botín

Museo, Centro Botín arte en Santander.