Cultural and Educational Value
Central courtyard of Maspalomas Lighthouse
1884 - 1890
Ethnography as an added value was also present during the construction of the lighthouse. The tower shaft and the stonework in the fittings of the openings, parapets, exterior skirting and stone surrounding were the work of master quarrymen who moved to the area for the construction of the lighthouse. The original idea was to use stone from Arucas, but the technical difficulty and cost of transporting it meant that a closer quarry had to be found. The stone was finally sourced in Fataga, from where teams of working animals hauled the excellent quality grey-green basalt stone to Punta de Maspalomas. The quality of the workmanship, carried out manually by master stoneworkers, is stunning even today because of its technical perfection, especially considering how difficult it was to work with such large blocks of stone.
Maspalomas Lighthouse is a reflection of the changing landscape and the rise of tourism, the main driver of the island’s economy. It has become a historical landmark illustrating the development of tourism in Gran Canaria and an icon of the Canary Islands, with multiple potential meanings for locals and visitors alike.
The construction typology is unique in fusing architectural, artistic and ethnographic values in a single building, in a feat of engineering that created a major work of maritime civil infrastructure.