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Nearly 140 Years of History, Culture and Tranquility at the Café Casino

7 years ago

Yet it is a public café since 2002, Casino’s facilities date back to 1873. Its architecture and location, at the rúa do Vilar, have made this place a necessary stop for pilgrims and tourists.

Its architecture and location made it a necessary stop

This establishment cannot go unnoticed for anyone, as its façade and display windows announce the majesty of a unique hall. Open since 1873, the building of the Casino in Compostela is worthy not only due to is architectural aesthetics –with no central beams–, but also to the sculptures surrounding the room.

There are a total of 36 carvings making reference to different themes, games of chance, confessions etc. These carvings were made by the sculptor and cabinetmaker from Compostela Maximino Magariños (1869 – 1927), author of known altarpieces such as the one in Santa María la Mayor, in Potevedra, or the one in the Capilla de las Reliquias in Santiago’s cathedral.

The window area shows the emblems of Galician cities and provinces, and also those of the State. The chimney friezes contain emblems of moons, and others with five stars belong to the archbishop Alonso III Fonseca (1475-1534), one of the main forerunners of Compostela’s university.

It is in this captivating environment, which proudly keeps its characteristic aesthetics, where nowadays coffees, cocktails and aperitifs are elaborated. A quiet place to meet other people, to enjoy a peaceful moment in the middle of the touristic centre of Santiago, or merely to taste some of the rice, pasta, risotto or pizza dishes or any other delicious offer from its menu of desserts, milkshakes and iced drinks, which contains more than 30 lovely possibilities. 

Meeting Point since 1873

Long ago before it became a charming café, this place held Compostela’s aristocracy and bourgeoisie as well as its members, who enjoyed there a great sight of one of the main streets of the old town. The upper floor contained the Yellow Hall, now closed, where parties and balls were celebrated during Carnival, Holy Week, Easter and Ascension Day.

The Gentlemen Casino of Santiago hosted people like José Saramago or Valle-Inclán, who wrote there many of his grotesque works. Also Castelao made a drawing making references to the Casino, Cousas do Casino –Things about the Casino. Kings, actors and artists shared this place which nowadays continues being a common meeting point for Compostela’s citizens.

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