Many people know Hostal de los Reyes Católicos as one of the most luxurious hotels in Santiago. It is a National Parador located in the best possible scenario of the city between the Cathedral of Santiago and the Town Hall in the extraordinary Plaza del Obradoiro.
But why is it attributed to the Catholic Kings? What role did it play and why is it so important?
These questions are key to understanding the importance of the building, because we are before a monument built at the beginning of the XVI century after an important visit that the Catholic Kings made to Santiago shortly before reconquering the Kingdom of Granada in 1492. At that time the kings they had decided to visit the city to establish the royal power and invoke the apostle James to help them in the last point of the country that was still to be recovered against the Muslims. When they arrived, they realized the terrible state in which the pilgrims arrived at that time. Can you imagine doing the Camino de Santiago in the middle of the Middle Ages? That is why it was really necessary to build a hospital in conditions.
However, the greatness of the building goes far beyond having been a pilgrim hospital, it also served as a jail, a hostel for orphaned children and had its own jurisdiction, that is, the building depended solely on real power, totally outside the archbishopric and the Council.
Its structure, its decoration and its style (which is neither Gothic nor Renaissance, but plateresque, a word that comes from the work of the silversmith craftsmen) make it a unique building and, together with the cathedral, one of the most important buildings from Santiago.
Book with us this tour by the hand of our art historians guides. With an approximate duration of one and a quarter hours, you will discover everything that the building hides, it will be like traveling to the past and going into the different dependencies of this magnificent Hospital.0