Convent of Santo Domingo el Real

The construction of the current conventual church was begun around 1568 by Diego de Velasco "el Mozo" (the Young Lad), and access is through a Renaissance entrance standing on four narrow Tuscan columns. It marks the appearance in Toledo of the ovoid vault. It has two parallel naves and several chapels with fine altarpieces, such as the one of San Juan Bautista, by Juan Bautista Monegro, dating from the beginning of the XVII Century, or the one in the chapel of los Silva, by the architect of the church.

The Mudejar casement choir doors are preserved from the XV Century, framed by plaster mouldings. The choir, boasting great artistic riches, is located in the first conventual church from the XIV Century. It is a building dating from the beginning of the XV Century, in a gothic-Mudejar style, adorned by numerous works of art. The large convent founded in the XIV Century is nowadays divided for different uses, one part is occupied by the Order of the Commanders who carry out security, another is occupied by the Cadastral archives and offices.

The entrance to the convent is next to this part, quite a long way away from the church. The complex building is built around two large cloisters, one gothic and another Renaissance, the latter being shared with the "Madres Comendadoras" (a parish group from Santiago). In its beginnings, when the daughters of Pedro I affirmed their beliefs there, it was enlarged using nearby buildings, whose union caused the demolition to redesign the street called "los Buzones", until then holding a direct path to the plaza de la Merced. This is the arrival and departure point for an emotional procession on Easter Thursday.

The square is dedicated to the poet Gustavo Adolfo Bécquer and the writer José Ortega Munilla. It appeared as the backdrop in films by Luis Buñuel.

It has a Mudejar tower in two parts, whose foundation is made of stone with stone blocks at the corners and rows of bricks, this being all that remains of a church that disappeared in the XIX Century.

The neighbourhood where it stands was called "Montichel", Mountain of heaven, because it offers some of the best vantage points of the city, from where one can admire the roofs of the Jewish quarter, the river Tajo, the Cigarrales orchard area and the always impressive sunsets.

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