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Can Catlar (Cal Marquès del Palmer)

The building façade is divided into three unequal storeys. On the ground floor there is a noteworthy large asymmetric doorway. It still features the door knockers set at a height meaning they could be reached by horsemen and the two Renaissance windows, the left of which is damaged. Among several small angel figures, we can make out the coat of arms of the Descatlar family. The window on the right features a strange and enigmatic relief of a feminine figure who is committing suicide with a sword, probably in reference to the Roman legend of Lucretia.

The piano nobile features a magnificent set of imposing windows in the Renaissance style dated 1556, as the engraving on the right-hand window testifies: "The windows were built in the year 1556". The windows are divided into four parts by a mullion and crossbar. The upper parts of each window are decorated with artistic medallions representing the virtues attributed to knights: strength, prudence, piety, charity and temperance. Imaginative anthropomorphic figures have also been depicted on the jambs. The porch features ogee arches in the Gothic style.

The huge courtyard has an irregular floor, segmental arches and a wooden coffered lobby. Two renaissance doorways can be found to the sides which provide access to the studios. The staircase is 19th-century, while the interior decoration is of the Rococo style, dating from the 18th century.


The current building is the product of renovation works carried out in the mid-16th century for Per Abrí-Descatlar y Valentí on the ruins of the old Gothic building owned by the Lloscos, Barons of Bunyolí. The building passed to the Catlar family in the year 1429.

Since 1442 and prior to the modernisation works this building housed La Seca, the place where Mallorcan coins were minted. This privilege and the title of keeper of the mint, "Señor de la Bolsa de Oro", was granted to Pere Abrí-Descatlar y de Santacoloma by Alfonso V. The functioning mint was maintained and managed by the family until the year 1787. In the year 1438 the man who would later become the first "Señor de la Bolsa de Oro" was granted the title of "Señor de Llucmajor". This caused a riot among the population of Llucmajor, since they were of the opinion that this appointment breached the franchises granted by James I. During the first years of the 18th century, the Archduke Carlos of Austria granted the title of Marqués del Palmer to Guillem Abrí-Descatlar. However, this title was not approved by the Bourbon family until the year 1817. In the 18th and 19th century, the beams were decorated in the Rococo style, a new main staircase was built which modified the courtyard, and chimneys were installed in some of the rooms. According to the amended electoral roll for 1864, the house was located on plot number 24 and belonged to Mr. Marqués del Palmer Hacendado, with a value of 44,831 Mallorcan pounds (Palma Municipal Archive, 1060).

Around 1872, the Archduke Luis Salvador spoke of "the wonderful house of Marquis of el Palmer, with its beautiful façade (the most beautiful façade of the entire city in the most pure Renaissance style); its windows are all very similar, but the details make them different". In the year 1990 the house belonged to Pilar Descatlar Machimbarrena, Marchioness of el Palmer.


Street  del Sol, 7

Palma 07001 (Illes Balears)

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Further details of interest:

Since 1442, prior to the modernisation works, this building has housed La Seca, the place where Mallorcan coins were minted.
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Can Catlar 2 Can Catlar. Drawing Can Catlar 360

Date of last modification: 2 of October 2014

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