Solsona's Hotel Sant Roc is an emblematic early twentieth-century Modernista building designed by two distinguished architects, Ignasi Oms and Bernadí Martorell. Commissioned by the Guitart family, the hotel that opened on 16 August 1929 was an astonishing addition to Solsona, a town with 2,500 inhabitants deep in the Catalan countryside. The main façade of the hotel, crowned by a crow-stepped gable, recalls traditional building in northern Europe, particularly the houses lining the canals of Amsterdam. Another referent is the Casa Amatller in Barcelona.
An impressive structure of ashlar masonry, the hotel has nine attractive entrances on its four sides and many windows, some in Neo-Gothic style. The front of the building has an attractive vestibule and above the main entrance and to the left is a large balcony overlooking the street. From a second-floor corner, below the building's characteristic stepped gable, rises a distinctive turret on octagonal stone corbelling in a geometrical pattern that matches the friezes that mark the first and second storeys.
The architects' plans were carefully executed and fine craftsmanship can be appreciated in the sgraffito decoration cut into the lime rendering on the exterior walls, in the woodwork both inside and outside the hotel, on the principal staircase and in the plaster ceilings over the main rooms and reception area. Each floor is arranged around an almost square central hall with rectangular spaces on either side. At the heart of the building is a square stairwell and a central corridor. The Modernista exterior is not the only distinctive feature of this hotel: noteworthy elements of the interior decoration can be seen in the use of iron, brick, tiles, stained glass, and frescoes on some of the ceilings. Historicist influences, usually Neo-Medieval elements or floral motifs with curving lines, are evident throughout the building. Although remarkable overall, the hotel's most emblematic feature is the composition of the exterior view.
The Garrigasait family took over management of the Hotel Sant Roc on 20 March 2002 and commissioned restoration work to counter structural damage that had arisen during the many years of service that had accumulated by the turn of the twenty-first century. The prime purpose of the restoration was to recover as many of the original architectural elements as possible so as to maintain the atmosphere of the hotel's early years. The result is a Modernista hotel that combines comfort and the creativity of the architects and artisans who built it. Elements such as frescoes and wall treatments, large curved stained-glass windows, wrought iron fixtures on the main staircase, windows and balconies, plaster moulding on the pillars and many other details blend harmoniously with the perfection of Murano crystal chandeliers and other lighting fixtures, original paintings and furniture in more sober lines.
The second phase of this important building's history began on 15 August 2004, when the Hotel Sant Roc reopened with 4-star status to celebrate its 75th anniversary.