Day Twelve: Don’t Pan Pan, Pilatos Not Pilates, Do You Know The Way To San Jose, One More Church, Bellas Fellas, Losing My Head, We Finally Get To Try This Restaurant, I Will Not Be Doing The Macarena, Archeological Dining And Where’s Tom Cruise And Madonna
For some reason everyone was up fairly early (perhaps one of us was making extra noise to help roust the crew). By 9:15 we had found Pan y Più (Calle Cabeza del Rey Don Pedro, 15), a delicious bakery near our apartment.
Fortified by savory and sweet pastries and bread that didn’t cost a lot of dough…
…we headed to our first stop of the morning…Casa de Pilatos. This palace dates all the way back from the late 15th century (it was home of the founders of the Enriquez de Ribera dynasty), and members of the Medinaceli family call it home today. Admission was €8.50, which included a guided tour of the upper floors and an audio tour of the lower floor and sumptuous gardens. The staircase to the upper floor has beautiful tile. It’s called “Sevilla’s first and most magnificent staircase.”
The rooms were beautiful. The salon photo and the ceiling of the Pacheco room (above) are both from the internet.
There are plenty of antique statues. One, from the 1500s, depicts Marcus Aurelius’ wife Faustina Minor (I guess you could marry a Minor back then).
…in the downstairs rooms, too.
The mosaics throughout the house were stunning.
We caught a glimpse of the striking ceiling in a ceremonial space known as Pilate’s Cabinet. The time spent in the Flagellation Chapel…
…and the “Small Garden,”…
that’s really not that small.
It was time to move on. Our next destination, the 18th century Iglesia de San José, had caught my interest when I was researching the trip. I asked Maapman Kim if he knew the way to San José, and he did. Burt Bacharach and Hal David couldn’t have done a better job.
The church is run by the Franciscan order, who I believe live about 45 miles north of San José. The church is quite dark inside.
The Captive Christ of Medinaceli is one of the figures most venerated by the Sevillian parish. Below we’d see the head of St. John the Baptist, and losing our heads would become a theme a little later in the day. Being a smaller church, it was a quick visit…
….it was a short stop on an increasingly hot day.
Now it was time to acquire a little culture (which is about all the culture we can handle) at the Museo de Bellas Artes, a former convent building that now houses a treasure trove of Spanish art. The convent was constructed for the Order of the Merced Calzada de la Asunción in 1594 during Sevilla’s golden age of painting and ceramics. We paid the €1.50 entrance fee (free for those with an EU passport), which included an audio guide, and walked into the gorgeous interior courtyard.
..as did the ceilings in this building….
But when Tracy took a picture of me in this room on her iPhone, my head had disappeared when we looked at the photo. I could understand if this had happened in the Washington Irving room at the Alhambra, but I was going out of my head trying to figure out how that happened. After seeing the picture, I said. “Let’s beheading out of here.”
We scored the last table (there are only eight) outside at Taberna Coloiniales (Plaza del Cristo de Burgos, 19). This place had tasty food and quick service, which was good since we were now melting. Mary ordered the winning dish…a special grilled veggie dish topped with a quail egg.
We headed back to the apartment, and I had thoughts of going out on my own to see one last sight in Sevilla. However, once I sat down, I knew I would not have enough energy to do the Macarena…well the Basilica de la Macarena (la Macarena is the patron saint of matadors…no bull). I had wanted to see the famed Nuestra Señora de la Esperanza (Virgin Of Hope), but at this moment I only hoped our legs could get us to dinner. Sevilla had been a busy few days of walking around.
Arriving at 8 p.m. at Ristorante San Marco, Calle Meson del Moro, 6 in the el barrio de Santa Cruz, we were seated in the bath. That’s because this restaurant is located in a 12th-century Arab bath, one of only two Arab baths remaining in Sevilla.
We were told that a lot of movie and music stars have dined here, including Madonna. So even though I had missed Nuestra Señora de la Esperanza at the Basilica de la Macarena, I told our group that should Madonna walk through the door, she’s “like a Virgin.” I know Kim immediately thought, “Thank God…only nine more nights.”
We had been looking forward to dining on the Italian/Mediterranean cuisine offered at Ristorante San Marco, and this place lived up to the billing.
Total bill for dinner and two bottles of wine barely exceeded €100, probably less than half of what this meal would cost in Los Angeles.
We took a slow stroll back through Sevilla on this warm night. Three nights seemed like the right amount of time to spend here.
On our walk back, Tracy said, “You know, we didn’t go to any flamenco here.”
I answered, “Well, we still have three cities left for that.” The cathedral was lit up as we wandered back to the apartment.
Tomorrow, we’d catch an early train to Cordoba where we would spend one day and night. Once again a jaw-dropping architectural marvel would have us saying “Wow!” We’d also hang out for a while on some people’s patios (you’d think one person would offer me a GinTonic).
Next: Day Thirteen – The Train In Spain Is Really Not A Pain, Pillars Of Strength, Who Put This Cathedral In My Mosque, A Stable Environment, Flower Power, Pepe Power, My Biggest Fan, Hospital For The Water Fearers, A Quick Stop At Dominic, The Golden Arches, You’ll Fry On The Roof, A Familiar Wine, Bridge Work and Should We Hit Flamenco Tonight