Antonio Lamela’s Ciudad de Melilla 33 building (Málaga) is now a historical heritage site
Happy ending for a jewel by Antonio Lamela. On March 5, the Official Gazette of the Junta de Andalucía (BOJA), completed the registration of the Ciudad de Melilla 33 building, erecting in the malagueta neighborhood, in the General Catalog of Andalusian Historical Heritage.
In this way, the property is protected for the future.
Built by Antonio Lamela between April 1967 and September 1971, it’s a 16-storey block that became one of the first towers in Malaga. The arrival of modernity in the Andalusian city. “It has an emblematic location and its orientation is very ingenious: oblique, 45º with respect to the street, to always look at the sea”, describes Carlos Lamela, president of Estudio Lamela. Only the portal, with geometric tile on the walls, a structure full of curves and original furniture makes you travel back to the 1970s. The floor, dressed in Alentejo blue tiles, is an extension of the sea, as if the tide entered the portal. “It seems that it has been frozen in time,” says Lamela. The building has been well preserved. There are no metal closures, no air conditioners or additions that affect its beauty. And its terraces, distributed in waterfalls, give a rhythm and a placidity that other neighboring buildings lack. It is what María Benavides fell in love with when she, in 2015, rented one of her homes with her family. “As soon as I entered, I knew I was keeping it,” says the woman from Málaga in ICON (El País) magazine. “Large windows, lots of light, exquisite carpentry, cool orientation in summer and mild in winter, everything convinced me,” says this interior designer.
“Ahead of his time”
She, along with the architect Daniel Rincón, have been the promoters of the protection of the building. She started at the portal. The neighbors wanted to submit it to a reform in 2019 that would destroy it. She spoke to them. With some she added strength. She also got in touch with Estudio Lamela, who offered, selflessly, to make the reforms that she needed, due to the passage of time, but, of course, respecting the original design. The Royal Academy of Fine Arts of San Telmo showed her support for the portal, as did the College of Architects of Málaga. “It is a quality building whose protection was worth working on” its dean, Francisco Sarabia, tells the magazine. The Junta de Andalucía understood the value not only of the portal but of the entire building, and protected it on March 5. An act of justice.
“Antonio Lamela was ahead of his time: he always thought that architecture should be done from the inside out. It was much lighter, with forms that almost float and a contained elegance “, reflects Rincón in ICON magazine. Happy ending for a jewel by Antonio Lamela.