The Sanctuary of Loyola monumental site is a key element of religious tourism in the Basque Country and is one of the points of the three temples route. It is a set of buildings erected around the tower house of Loyola, the birthplace of San Ignacio de Loyola, today known as the Holy House.
The Basilica de Loyola emerges from the centre with force among all these buildings of religious and spiritual nature dominated by a dome and preceded by a large portico decorated in churrigueresque style, an exuberant modality of the Spanish baroque.
The construction of the basilica of Loyola, a firm reference of baroque architecture started in the 17th-century and was inaugurated in 1738 in honour of San Ignacio.
This imposing temple was designed by the Italian architect Carlo Fontana who was a disciple of Bernini who fashioned it as a minin Vatican. It was built by the Basque master builders Zaldua, Lekuona and Ignacio Ibero. True to this style, it has a circular layout topped by a majestic dome and a graceful lantern. The high altar made in churrigueresque style since 1758 houses the statue of San Ignacio in its centre.
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