The convent of Santa María de Gracia
- The chapel of La Cinta
- Humilladero de la Cinta
- The Cathedral
- The church of San Pedro
- The hermitage of La Soledad
- The church of La Purísima Concepción
- The convent of Santa María de Gracia
- Church of La Milagrosa
- Convent of Hermanas de la Cruz
- The church of San Sebastian
- Monument to the Virgin of El Rocío
- The church of Sagrado Corazón de Jesús
- Brotherhood house 'El Rocio'
- Hermandad de Emigrantes
The economic prosperity of the city of Huelva thanks to its rich mines and its proximity to the city of Seville – which was also living a period of economic expansion – allowed the construction of four convents for different religious communities.
The first one was the Convent of Santa María de Gracia for the Augustine nuns from the Convent of San Leandro, Seville.
The second convent was that of Nuestra Señora de la Victoria for the Minim monks of the Order of St. Francis of Paola. This convent was built in 1582 under the protection of their religious vocation, with the neighbours’ fervour, and the support of the Duke and Duchess of Medina Sidonia.
The third convent was the Convent for the Franciscan monks of the Observance, founded in 1588 under the city council’s auspice.
Finally, the fourth convent was that of the Discalced Mercedarian monks, built in 1650 with the support of the Duke and Duchess of Medina Sidonia.
The only convent of these four which is still open today is that of the Reverend Augustine Mothers, located at a side of the centric Plaza de las Monjas Square. This square was built over what it used to be a Muslim necropolis.
The first steps of the construction of the convent were carried out following the age’s taste for the Gothic and Mudejar style with basic materials – brick, wood, and plaster.
The Convent of Santa María de Gracia (1510-1700) is located at a side of the centric Plaza de las Monjas Square, where there used to be a Muslim necropolis. The nuns, who were determined to worship God with silence, praying, and sacrifice, started living their cloistered life the 25 March 1510 under the protection of Elvira de Guzmán y Maldonado, Countess of Niebla.
The first steps of the construction of the convent were carried out following the age’s taste for the Gothic and Mudejar style with basic materials – brick, wood, and plaster. There are hardly rests of the primeval traces of the convent due to posterior restoration works. Nevertheless, we still keep important Mudejar rests. The most ancient ones belong to the cloister, but maybe the most remarkable one are those from the entrance patio, having Tuscan columns of Genoese marble supporting brick round arches.
The church acquired its present aspect in 1618 with the creation of the chapel for the high altar. The building was restored in 1951 by architects Luis Saavedra and Ricardo Anadón for the new structure of the square. The present dome of the church was built. In 2003, architect Carlos Barranco restored the temple again and recovered the embellishment of the façade following José María Pérez Carasa’s project.
The church has a single nave with reredos built onto both enclosure walls. The ceiling is roofed with a polychromatic, wooden, coffered armature. People pass from the church nave to the presbytery through a round chancel arch of facing brick. Light barely enters the church from the left side through arrow slits or mullioned windows, whereas the right side of the church lets the light in through two arrow slits between columns supporting horseshoe arches. The framework of the arches is covered with Seville-style tiles.
The foot zone of the church has a portico with columns and round arches of faced bricks. The central bay has two pair of arches, while the lateral ones have two more each. The chevet of the church consists of a flat apse roofed by a dome supported by pendentives.
The chevet is decorated with a Neo-Renaissance altarpiece. Its lower part belongs in the Ionic order, whereas the upper one belongs in the Corinthian one. The one-bayed altarpiece is a mixed one, as it combines both sculptural and pictorial decoration.