The Garden of the Glorieta was designed by the fortification architect Don Manuel Serrano Insa who marked out the area of the future park built on some plots proceeded from the demolition of several houses located between Santo Domingo and La Aduana being built this new building in the late eighteenth century.
Marshal Suchet acquired the sites in 1812 to that end. When Elio arrived to Capitanía General, the idea was to install on this surface a monument to Fernando VII surrounded by trees. The monument came not ever done, but orange trees, willow and ash were planted so that the upcoming promenade began to be shaped.
A series of sculptures from the Canon Pontons garden in Patraix were acquired between 1817 and 1820 for garden ornamentation including the still preserved Ponzanelli’s Triton, the Four Seasons and the Neptune
Paralyzed with the fall of General Elio, the works were not resumed until 1826 being O’Donnell the general captain; he ordered to enclose the garden with a wooden balustrade between stone pillars topped by knobs and vases. This balustrade had a certain monumental door facing to Carrer de la Mar; the door was built under the direction of architect Christopher Sales and topped by two stone lions which held spheres in their claws and carrying elves bearing some emblems, which were sculptures made by Vicente Piquer. The first music pavilion was built at the same time; the time when garden walkway area was 150 yards from the door of the Plaza de Tetuan to Parterre and 20 meters wide.
On giving up control in 1833, O’Donnell takes over the successive Glorieta improvements, so that he took possession of the Santo Domingo convent Garden in 1841 with an extension of “ochohanegadas, un cuartón y docebrazas de tierra” with the intention to annex it to the Garden of the Glorieta.
In 1844, the platforms were widened and the Triton Fountain, which went to a store, was dismounted. Two years after Don Domingo Cicchiari set next to the Carrer de la Mar door a coffee trying to emulate those who had become fashionable in Paris and London, lighting it up with gaslight. The number of plants increased that year with the planting of Saigon Canada, catalpas, buckeyes, plane and lime trees. In 1854 lots of palm trees were planted and in the following year, magnolias; as long as a greenhouse is built next to the music pavilion and is intended to replace the wooden enclosure by another iron, which does not take practice until 1860.
This iron enclosure -currently in the Royal Gardens- owned several gates: the monumental one overlooking the Tetuan Square, a second one opposite to the citadel, a third one which gave access to Pla del Remei, two perpendicular to customs and the one faced with Carrer de la Mar to mark the opening of Carrer de la Pau; another door consisting on three arches, was opened. The Triton was also reinstalled placing it on the fountain that currently exists, made in black marble according to a draft made by architect Don Antonio Sancho and the academy student Don Antonio Cortina; the fountain was attached to a small mountain with trees.
In 1895 a first aid post is built between the café and the overlooking gate to Captaincy; the place was located on the same site where there was a store. In 1901 the Neptune statue is brought here from the Alameda, being before placed in the Garden of Pontons. At the same time the sculptures representing the four seasons, moved to another garden, disappeared. The promenade also suffered a major reform of gardening in placing beds of flowers and plants with soil from the Peris and Valero St. demolition -before and then “de la Pau”- with which a more uniform appearance is managed. On June 17 of that year the theater was inaugurated with a performance of “The Barber of Seville”, theater would be soon destroyed by a fire.
In 1905 Penichet describes the garden as a “beautiful jungle decoration” with groves where there are planted cedar, arbutus, mastic and rosemary crowned with pines and holm oaks rising in the middle of a flowery park surrounded by shady plane trees… Later, around 1919 the historian AloyMartínez talks about the mighty cedar, the corpulent ficus and phenix, the giant holm oak, the equatorial corifa, the beautiful latanias from India and the huge magnolias.
The most profound transformation of the Glorieta took place in 1927 , when the great urban reforms of Valencia were performed, being Mayor Don Luis Oliag , the City agrees to undertake a complete change of the promenade so the fence, the most of the existing buildings there and many of the oldest and tall trees disappeared within months.
Thereafter the Glorieta is reduced to the extent that have today, with some monuments dedicated to Valencian figures such as Doctor Gómez Ferrer made by Paredes, except from the children at its feet, made by Luis Bolinche; the bronze painter Francisco Domingo Marques bust, earlier in the Alameditas de Serranos, formed by Mariano Benlliure; and painters Joaquín Muñoz DegrainAgrasot sculptures, both shaped by Francisco Maroc y Díaz – the first one is painted and set on a bank with curved profiles and the second is made in bronze as was the old Eduardo Escalante sculpture (whose head was stolen and after replaced by a marble one and placed in a garden of the Cabanyal) made by Mariano Benlliure.
In 1950 a number of old gas lamps with fluorescent electricity installation were installed and cypress fence was performed with removal of the open and closed more than once central street, giving greater space to the kids’ area. The flood suffered Valencia in 1957 razed the Glorieta reaching the water almost three meters. Its present appearance comes from the reconstruction made after that catastrophe.
- TIME SCHEDULE
- No hours, it’s always open
- Bounded by the streets General Palanca, General Tovar, Palacio de Justicia and Porta de la Mar.
- 9.256 m2
The Garden of the Glorieta’s origin is due to the will of General Elío, who through a popular subscription, began the works in 1817, turning the space into a place of nobly reception which you could enter to by the Porta de la Mar to the city.
Originally it was a Valencian traditional garden, cross designed with roundabouts at the meetings of cadres and where traditional species of our gardening such as orange, lemon, myrtle and flowering shrubs in the tables were used. In one part a fragment of natural forest, which is what makes background to the Ponzanelli’s Triton Fountain, was recreated. The tables were covered with stone benches with iron backrest.
It underwent many modifications until after the flood, which hit Valencia in 1957, devastated the park and was again rebuilt as we know it today.