Foster + Partners Refurbish Hall of Realms, Madrid
Foster + Partners and Rubio Arquitectura will breathe new life into the historic Hall of Realms of Museo del Prado in Madrid, Spain
Foster + Partners and Rubio Arquitectura will breathe new life into the historic Hall of Realms of Museo del Prado in Madrid, Spain. The Hall of Realms (Salón de Reinos) of Museo del Prado, Madrid is one of the only surviving structures of the 17th-century Palacio del Buen Retiro. It once housed the Army Museum, before that was moved to the Prado in October 2015.
Earlier this year, the museum launched an international competition to select a team of architects to refurbish the Hall of Realms, while also adding a new space to showcase the museum’s collections, as well as providing a new exhibition area focused on Spanish history and artistic patrimony.
The proposed design from Foster + Partners and Rubio Arquitectura consists of connecting the various buildings of the Prado by public spaces and underground links. They will also be restoring The Hall’s majestic interiors, and adding state-of-the-art galleries.
An original three-story southern façade that goes back four centuries is to become the backdrop for a new space within the building, while the existing outer wall will be opened up to bring in light.
Terrace cafés will be found on the north side of the building, and a new roof will harvest energy using solar cells. The pedestrian-friendly design involves a public route through the building and ties in the neighboring Retiro Park.
The addition of the Hall is being timed to coincide with the Museo del Prado’s 200th anniversary in 2019. Building work is expected to start in 2018.