PERIOD 16th century
The Abbey that can be visited today was built in 1878 according to the design of Jerónimo Cuervo. The most recent reforms were carried out in the 1980s and 90s, with a view to satisfying the needs of the increased population and to provide sufficient space for the final location of the Religious Art Museum.
The temple comprises one sole nave divided into two sections with a half-barrel vault ceiling and transverse rib arches. A quarter sphere dome tops the main chapel, of semicircular design. The choir stalls rise up from floor level, the pulpit opening onto the presbytery.
Particularly significant on the outside is the white stone entrance portal, of classic lines with a round arch flanked by boxed trans-pilasters. In the centre of the façade there is a niche with an image of Saint Ana that dates back to the 18th century.
SANTA ANA ABBEY - HISTORY
The Cistercian presence in Malaga has its roots in the feminine branch of the Order. In 1597, Bishop Luis García de Haro acquired a building next to the Parish of San Juan in which, after taking the habits and the profession of the Discalced Carmelites, thirteen nuns were converted in the Convent of Jesus María. Years later, (1604), Catalina de Aguirre, who later took the name of Catalina of the Incarnation, was to found on this same site the Abadía de Santa Ana de Recoletas Bernardas del Císter (Cistercian). When the community of nuns expanded, it moved to its current location in the square at that time called Del Conde Square, later renamed Cister Square.
On 20th January 1680, the convent's most important patron, Luis de Valdés consecrated the church of the Cistercian Santa Ana Abbey, paying for all the expenses. The builder Miguel de Pérez and stonemason Juan Alonso constructed this building, which has not lasted to our days; the entrance was the work of Miguel Melendez and the main altarpiece was entrusted to the architect and sculptor Felipe de Unzurrunzaga in 1702.
Between 1836 and 1876, urban reforms and disentailment forced the nuns to move several times, and the façade of the building was demolished and moved back on various occasions first of all, until finally the buildings were destroyed altogether. It was during the last year mentioned that the Town Hall returned the ownership to the Cistercians and in 1878 new buildings were built following the plans of Jerónimo Cuervo.
This is, therefore, the building that we see today. The most recent reforms were carried out in the 1980s and 90s, with a view to satisfying the needs of the increased population and to provide sufficient space for the final location of the Sacred Art Museum
The sculptor from Granada, Pedro de Mena y Medrano, is intimately linked to Santa Ana Abbey, not only because it is the place he chose to be buried at, but also because the artist lived close to the convent and several of his daughters joined the Order.
HOW TO FIND IT
Address: CL CISTER 13, 29015 Málaga