The Royal Tobacco Factory is an impressive colonial building in Seville, southern Spain, with a fascinating history of the tobacco trade that came to Spain from the Americas. Since the 1950’s it has been part of the University of Seville.
The Royal Tobacco Factory was declared National Artistic Historical Monument in 1959 and also has the consideration of Well of Cultural Interest.
Interesting fact: The story of the opera Carmen by the French composer Georges Bizet was set in the factory, where the main character, Carmen – a gypsy woman who worked in the site – fell in love with one of the soldiers guarding the building.
Planning to travel to Seville soon? In this article, you will find useful information about the former Royal Tobacco Factory: from opening hours to entry fee, and more.
Where is the Royal Tobacco Factory?
The building is located in the Casco Antiguo, the city center district of Seville, the capital of the Spanish region of Andalusia. It is not very far from the Cathedral so it is worth the quick walk. A short walk across the street will take you to the famous Plaza Espana.
Address: Calle San Fernando, 4, 41004 Seville
Coordinates: 37° 22′ 53.688” N, 5° 59′ 25.944” W
Altitude: 14 m/ 45 ft
Phone: +34 954 55 10 00
Website: Universidad de Sevilla
Opening hours & Admission prices
Friday: from 9.30 to 12.30; 16.00 to 18.00
Saturday: from 9.30 to 12.30
Visits by prior arrangement at all other times.
The Royal Tobacco Factory, or Real Fábrica de Tabacos, is one of the largest and best industrial buildings in Spain; it covers a roughly rectangular area of 185 by 147 m (610 by 480 ft), with slight protrusions at the corners.
The factory was built by the Flemish architect Sebastián Van der Borcht between 1728 and 1771. The layout is Renaissance in style, in terms of its floor plan and facades, with the principal building material being stone from the town of Morón de la Frontera. The interior consists of a series of arcaded patios with long corridors and rooms.
Visiting the Royal Tobacco Factory
Surrounded by old trees, the building is a beautiful structure that was once home to a cigar operation staffed primarily by women, among them Carmen, the gypsy character of Prosper Merimee’s novella which was immortalized in Bizet’s Carmen opera. Now the building houses the main offices, including the Rector’s, and several faculties of the University of Seville. The students go about their business, intently, while the tourists walk around. The rooms, stairways, library, and corridors have a lovely style. Worth a visit.
I hope you enjoyed my guide to the Royal Tobacco Factory in Seville! Please share it with your friends on your social media. Here are a few more informative and interesting articles that I recommend you read next:
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Have you been to Seville? Have you visited this impressive colonial building? Do you enjoy exploring old churches as much as I do? Feel free to post a comment below.