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Paris, Rome, Venice, and Barcelona are among the top-visited destinations in Europe. Beyond the Old World, New York City, Toronto and Whistler await shopping, dining and skiing enthusiasts, as well as businessmen and students. Quality accommodation is always in demand, and nowadays travellers have the freedom to choose not only hotels, but also apartment rentals.
Conveniently located and fully furnished, apartments of Sweet Home Abroad are excellently suited for short-term rentals and could be your next great vacation! All apartments are meant for travellers looking for comfort and independence regardless of their activities of interest. Beach lovers could opt for an apartment rental in Israel or rent a villa in Spain. Lovers of outdoor winter activities like skiing and snowboarding will find Whistler, located in Canada, a great destination: the co-host of Winter Olympic Games in 2010, Whistler is perfectly equipped to provide you with great skiing and riding trails, impeccable customer service and top-notch long-term accommodation. History and culture buffs will enjoy a great selection of accommodation we offer in Paris, Prague, Madrid, and, of course, Barcelona.
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La Sagrada Família

Lа Sagrada Família is the unquestionable symbol of Barcelona, its wonder and its most essential attraction. If for some reason you have time for only one sightseeing trip in Barcelona, that should be it – this masterpiece of Gaudí, unfinished yet dominating everything around it with its grandeur and verticality in homage to European cathedrals of the Middle Ages. True to the medieval traditions, La Sagrada Família is still under construction, more than a century after Gaudí began his project of a lifetime. Despite its unfinished look and the constant presence of cranes on the background, the church draws more than 2,8 million visitors annually, twice as much as other attractions of Barcelona combined.

The Expiаtory Temple of the Holy Family became the last creation of Gaudí and his relentless obsession. It was commissioned by the conservative public who sought to buy salvation and atone for sins of modernity with a great monument. That is why Gaudí saw the completion of his work as a holy mission and did not stop when the money ceased coming in: he used his own funds to finance the construction and did not shy away from pleading wealthy patrons to donate some more.

While Lа Sagrada Família is still being built, the completed sections along with Gaudí’s museum are open to public in all their glory. The Nativity facade and the Passion facade, both with four towers added, are only the sides of the church. The main Glory facade is the focus of construction today. Gaudí devised a temple that would be 95m long and 60m wide, would accommodate 13000 people, with a central tower 170m high, above the transept that represents Christ, and 17 more towers 100m high or even higher! Twelve of them are meant to represent the Apostles, and other five are dedicated to the Virgin Mary and the four Evangelists. Gaudí once again showed his disdain for straight lines (they did not exist in nature, he said) in designing his towers whose distending contours remind of the holy mountain of Montserrat. The towers, it seems, grow out of the stone foundation itself.

Аt the time of Gaudí’s death only the crypt, the apse walls, one of the portals and one of the towers had been finished. Three more towers were added by 1930 thus completing the Nativity facade. Everything that could be burned and damaged in the church was destroyed by anarchists in 1936 who left nothing intact, not even the plans, sketches, nor models. The work was resumed only in 1952. The Passion facade was completed between 1954 and 1978, with four towers and one portal, as Gaudí planned. The sculptor, Josep Subirach, continues to decorate it without attempting to imitate Gaudí’s style, but adding controversial images of his own. The principle series of sculptures is located on three levels in S-shaped arrangement, starting with the Last Supper at the bottom left and ending with the burial of Christ at the top right.

Аccording to the estimates of the architects, the temple will be completed between 2020 and 2040, and by this time the older parts of the structure would undoubtedly need restoration. The grand plan is to wrap up the construction in 2026, just in time for the centennial of Gaudí's tragic death. The roof has been recently completed, which made the celebration of Mass possible - on 7th November 2010 Barcelona welcomed Pope Benedict XVI who consecrated the unfinished church.

Finаlly, the Gaudí museum, located at the crypt of the church, is dedicated to the life and work of the Barcelona genius. The collection includes models of his works and projects, photographs and other documents related to La Sagrada Família. A side hall at the eastern end of the museum leads to a viewing point above the crypt in which Antoni Gaudí i Cornet himself is buried.

Another Modernist masterpiece, Santa Creu i Sant Pau Hospital, is located a few minutes' walk away from La Sagrada Família.

La Sagrada Família Passion facade of La Sagrada Família
Sculptures on the Passion facade Crucified Jesus Christ on the Passion facade
Entrance to La Sagrada Família from the Passion facade side Flogging of Christ
La Sagrada Família towers The Ascension of Christ
North-west wall of La Sagrada Família Pinnacles of the Nativity facade
Crown of one of the pinnacles of the Nativity facade Crown of another pinnacle of the Nativity facade
The Nativity facade of La Sagrada Família Cypress on the Nativity facade
Pinnacles of main spires of La Sagrada Família Interior of La Sagrada Família
Ceilings of La Sagrada Família Ceilings of La Sagrada Família (detail)
Stained glass windows and pillars of La Sagrada Família Stained glass window of La Sagrada Família
Light playing on pillars of La Sagrada Família La Sagrada Família is still under construction
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