Edificio de Las Cariátides is a building in the Spanish capital of Madrid built by Spanish architect, Antonio Palacios. The building was later the head office of the Central Bank and later of the Santander Bank. As of 2006 it is the headquarters of the Instituto Cervantes.
Alcalá street, one of the oldest streets in Madrid, which ends at the Puerta del Sol, at the beginning of the 20th century, points to a relevant financial center in the city. The demolitions of the Nueva Gran Vía in 1911 already indicate the beginnings of important urban transformations in the capital. The collaboration of two young architects, initiated in 1904, already has several previous successes. The success of both engineers begins when winning adepts after winning in the municipal public contest of the Palace of Communications. It is noteworthy that the architecture of Madrid is dominated at the beginning of the 20th century by the existence of banks and churches. This building is a novelty that is the first office to be built in Madrid. These types of buildings are typical in American cities like Boston and Chicago or in England.
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