Church of San Ginés, Madrid

4.3
The church of San Ginés in Madrid, is one of the oldest churches in that city. It is situated on the Calle Arenal. References to it appear in documents dating from the ninth century. Originally built in Mudéjar style, it was rebuilt in 1645.HistoryThe church was one of the churches of the medieval Madrid, of Mozarab origin, from between the 12th and 13th centuries, and its name comes from the fact that it was dedicated to the patron saint of notaries and secretaries, Saint Genesius of Arles (San Ginés de Arlés).It was declared Bien de Interés Cultural in 1982.DescriptionThe church is preceded by an atrium enclosed by railings. It has a Latin cross plan, with a nave and two aisles separated by semicircular arches and several side chapels and the altarpieces belong to the Neoclassical-Romantic school. It was, however, totally reconstructed after suffering several fires, so few remnants of the original church, such as the bell-tower, remain. In 1870, the loggia and atrium facing the Calle Arenal were added.In the Santísimo Cristo Chapel there are artworks by Alonso Cano, Luca Giordano and el Greco.In fact, the painting by El Greco is not to be found in the chapel of the Santísimo, it is situated in the main church but covered by wood and it is only on display on Saturdays from 11.30 am to noon.
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Church of San Ginés Reviews
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  • Ancient origins for this church (at least 12th century), but the current building is the result of the complete reconstruction of the mid-17th century; Subsequently the church had several refurbishments and restorations, also following the fires of 1724, 1756 and 1824: in particular the overall neoclassical aspect of the interior is due to the renovation following the fire of 1756. The original facade of the church would be on calle de Bordadores, but in 1870 the north side was redone, turning it into a second facade (intervention that was carried out as a result of the great importance that at the time had assumed calle of the Arenal, on which north side of the church). The interior is divided into 3 aisles by large pillars, with the central aisle very wide, while in the side aisles open the chapels: 6 on the dx side and 4 on the left side (they are smaller on this side, because part of the wall is occupied by the side entrance , that of calle del Arenal and another part from the chapel of the Holy Christ of Redemption, which is much larger than the others. Once you enter the interior if you limit yourself to an overall look you might be disappointed, because the best part of the church is the individual chapels, all richly decorated and furnished (such as the 3rd chapel of the dx side, all covered in wood or the next, all clad in polychrome majolicas), in particular the first chapel of the sx side, that is the aforementioned chapel of the Ss.Cristo Redeemer, which is a church in the church: Latin cross plan, with vaults and walls richly decorated with marbles of various colors, stucco, canvases and frescoes (it is the only place in the church where you can't take pictures), in front of the entrance of this chapel you will find the magnificent painting of the Annunciation of Luca Giordano and on the other side the painting of El Greco "The expulsion of merchants from the temple" (in practice these 2 paintings stand on the sides of the original entrance of the church, above which there is the cantory with the organ). In the main altar, between 2 green marble columns with bases and gold capitals (same columns are present on the altars that close the side aisles) is enclosed the great martyrdom of San Gines, the work of Jose San Martin. The church has fairly large opening hours (Mon-Sat: 8.45/13 and 18/21; Sun: 9.45/14 and 17.45/21) but keep in mind that the El Greco painting is normally closed by a wooden roof and is only displayed on Mondays, Tuesdays Thursdays and Fridays from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m., Saturdays 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. to 12 p.m., Sundays from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Beware of the SS too. Masses, quite frequent: work days at 9, 11, 12, 19 and 20.30; Sunday 10, 11, 12, 13, 18, 20.
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  • My twin brother Stephen and I were on our way to Chocolateria San Gines and we pass this church on the way,its a beautiful church, one of the oldest in Madrid, the church is so photogenic, makes for s...  more »
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  • Totally a tourist spot now. Churning out churros and porras with no soul. Not freshly made, slight hard and coffee (cafe con leche) not good. Use long-life UHT milk. Unless you’re going alone and want to try both churros and porras and cannot eat too much, the half portions are expensive and not worth it. Order to share instead.
  • Very beautiful and calm place for praying and admiring space. El Greco painting.
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