Catholic footprint in the streets of Habaneras: Calle Paula

Por L.N.A.

Calle Paula

In 1731 the works of the women’s hospital and the church of Paula were completed. Before long, the hospital became considered the most important in Havana at the time, until Cirilo Villaverde mentions it in his novel Cecilia Valdés. The church is one of the most significant colonial monuments in the city. According to the eminent architect Joaquín Weiss, it has one of the best achieved facades of the Cuban Baroque of the eighteenth century.

These two properties gave name to the Alameda de Paula, the first walk of colonial Havana and the street where the crying of our José Martí was first heard.

It was first called San Francisco de Paula, but the population only told Paula. Thus it remained until 1922, when it was approved to change its name to Leonor Pérez, the mother of the apostle. The population respected the change and it is still called that, but popularly it is still named Paula, although the hospital no longer exists and the church property only plays a formidable cultural role.

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