Don Bosco prediction
The idea of constructing a temple on top of the mountain of the Tibidabo arose at the end of the century xix before the rumors on the construction of a Protestant temple and a hotel – casino, before what a «Meeting of Catholic Gentlemen» acquired the property of the area, which transferred in 1886 the Italian priest Juan Bosco (canonized in 1934). Bosco was then of visit in Barcelona invited by Dorotea de Chopitea, big patron and property development company of the project. There arose then the idea of doing a temple dedicated to Jesus’s Sacred Heart, a fashionable dedication then thanks to the impulse of pope León XIII, following the line of the temple constructed in Rome for the proper Bosco (Sacred Cuore di Gesù), as well as of the famous person Sacré-Cœur de París and other churches homónimas French, like those of Lyons and Marseilles.
In 1886 there was constructed a neogothic chapel, inaugurated on July 3, promoted by the salesianos, the gathering founded by Bosco. Two years later, owing to the visit of the queen Maria Cristina to the mountain in the bosom of the acts of celebration of the Universal Exhibition, the Vallvidrera highway was urbanized and there was constructed next to the chapel a pavilion of Mudejar inspiration, which was serving as lookout, later knocked down.
The project of construction of the temple suffered an important delay due especially to the appearance of a new project to construct an astronomical observatory in the top of the Tibidabo, which finally was done in a next hill (Observatory Fabra).
Finally, on December 28, 1902 the first stone was placed in an act presided by the bishop of Barcelona, Salvador Casañas i Pagès, who in its speech asked for an alms for the «new Montmartre of Barcelona» — in allusion to the famous Parisian hill where the Sacré-Cœur-is located. The works extended until 1961 and they were finished by Josep Maria Sagnier, son of the maker of the project, Enric Sagnier.
Enric Sagnier was a prolific author, possibly the architect with major number of constructions in the Barcelona, nearly 300 documented buildings. Of eclectic style, with a certain classical tendency, it was near to the fashionable modernism in the epoch in the Catalan capital, but interpreting it in a sober and functional way. Its main inspiration source was the medieval architecture, especially Romanesque and Gothic.
In XXII International Eucharistic Congress celebrated in Madrid in 1911 the Sacred Heart of the Tibidabo was named Expiatory National Temple of Spain.
On October 29, 1961 the temple received the title of basilica, granted by pope Juan XXIII.
Construcction of the hermitage
1902 - 1911
Contruction of the Crypt
End of the construction of the Temple and dedication like Basilica poi pope Juan XXIII