Next to the Asajara Palace is the Monastery of San Jerónimo de Valparaiso, a large building that was once a convent and is now privately owned. It was built by Fray Vasco, a hermit of Portuguese origin.
The history of the monastery
This building has been considered an architectural jewel among the religious buildings of Córdoba since the beginning of the 15th century. It was the first monastery of the Sisters of St Jerome in Spain.
The chronicles tell us that some of the materials used in this building were taken from the ruins of Medina Azahara. This has not been confirmed, but given the type of stone and the proximity to the site, it is likely that this is the case.
It must be noted that the building ceased to be used as a monastery in 1835. It is currently owned by the Marquis of Merit and was declared a Site of Cultural Interest in 1980.
The character of the building
On visiting the building one realises that it has a very original architecture and form. The large facade of the abbey is filled with balconies and windows, and the large white marble coat of arms with reliefs of St Jerome stands out.
It has a large main courtyard with many Doric columns and various Gothic vaults. Another place to highlight within the monastery of St Jeronimo is its church, with its perfectly preserved cloister chapel and tabernacle.
The celebrities of the Cordoban monastery
As a curiosity, numerous personalities from social life, politics and royalty passed through the Monastery of San Jerónimo in Valparaiso. It is curious to note that Queen Isabel, Felipe II, Felipe IV, Manoret, Ernest Hemingway or Victor Fleming are among its most illustrious visitors in the guest book of this place.
Visit to San Jerónimo
It is currently a private building, so it is not open to the public on a regular basis. On the other hand, guided tours for a maximum of 25 people are organised at various times during the year.