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Cuba: 505 Years of Sancti Spiritus

Sancti Spiritus, formerly known as Village of Espiritu Santo (Holy Spirit), is turning 505 years in 2019, full of attractions for visitors coming from other regions of the country and even abroad.

The fourth of seven villages founded by the Spanish conquistadors in Cuba in the 16th century, the city holds architectural, historic and cultural traditions, and natural beauties, in an attractive and unique combination.

The historic heart of the city, which was declared a National Monument, benefited from restoration work to improve its image, as well as other areas, including the façades of buildings and houses, which were also renovated.

Three building styles are present in the colonial area of Sancti Spiritus, where more than 1,000 buildings of high architectural value are located, made of masonry and traditional adobe.

In the 18th century, the neoclassical style burst forth with force, and it is present in the ornamentation of doors and windows with railings with beautiful filigrees, where craftsmen sought to fulfill the double purpose of protection and decoration.

The Spanish baroque is in the large portals of the stately mansions of yesteryear, in a structure where the plaza with the church in the center reflected the classic design of the towns, a trend that evolved towards a constructive method adapted to the conditions of the country.

Trinidad, popular dances
Street in Trinidad

Founded by Conqueror Diego Velazquez de Cuellar, Sancti Spiritus has a space, on Honorato Street, that recalls with five big bells the history that has gone by since June 4, 1514, until 2014, when the city celebrated its 500th anniversary.

Each of chime of the bells accounts for 100 years; that is, the first one covers from 1514 to 1614 and so on until the five centuries of the city.

Downtown is the Parochial Major Church, a National Monument, which was built in 1680 and is considered the oldest building in the city.

In the construction of the building, the architectural style has its artistic antecedent in the Mudejar style and it is said that its plant is almost identical to that of Villa de Alcor, in Huelva, Spain.

The building emphasizes the use of vaults of corner of cloister, arcs made with bricks in radial disposition and arcs of discharge, elements that were used with great mastery.

The bridge over the Yayabo River is the patrimonial symbol of the city of Sancti Spiritus, it is located southwest of the historic heart, in the old Paso de las Carretas, and connects the historic area with the Colon neighborhood.

Its design resembles that of a medieval bridge because it is made of stone, formed by five arches that diminish its height as it approaches the banks of the rivers.

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