Domènec Balet i Nadal

(1844 - 15/02/1915)

Son of Josep Balet Manubens and Maria Nadal Sorribas was born in Barcelona and married Maria Duran and Trinxeria and they had 4 children named Josep, Domingo, Consuelo and Enric.

He resided in several directions:

  • First it costs us that he lived in the Cortes 236, 4th floor (currently the street is Gran Vía de las Corts Catalanas and number 608).

  • Later he lived in Paseo de Gracia Nº2 (formerly number 20), 3rd floor, in La Casa Pascual i Pons (work of the architect Enric Sagnier in 1891) which are, in fact, two buildings belonging to the homonymous families and Neo-Gothic façade. Currently, the owner is the insurance company Catalana Occidente. On that same floor he had the architecture studio that he shared with his son, the architect Josep.

His wife Dª. Maria Duran died before him on January 13, 1906. Later Domènec Balet remarried Mercè Damer.

  • During his last years of life (from 1906 until his death in 1915), he lived in one of his last projects; the modernist building (which was his property) and which bears his name: the Domènec Balet House on Tallers Street 68bis.

Gran Via 608

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Modernist House Domènec Balet


In 1869 he obtained the title of Master of Works.

These studies began in 1850 at the Royal Catalan Academy of Fine Arts of San Jorge in the School of Noble Arts in La Lonja, as a result of a lack of Architects to supply the constructive demand of the time and ended definitively in 1871. The professionals with this degree they became extinct in the 30s of the 20th century. In 1875 the Barcelona School of Architecture was finally approved, which had already been installed in the Building of the University of Barcelona in the Eixample.

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On December 30, 1873, the newspaper "La Imprenta" published the membership of Domingo Balet y Nadal as Deputy of the Board of Directors of the Center of Masters of Works of Catalonia.

"—The Center of Masters of Works of Catalonia, in a general meeting of 20 of current, has appointed its Board of Directors for next year, resulting in the election of the following ladies: —President, Mr. José Antonio Obradora. — Vice-president, D. Francisco Padrol. — Treasurer, D. José Torner. — Accountant, D. Ramón Soriano. — Secretljrio 1st, D. Francisco Cels.— Id. 2. *, D. Pedro Buqueras. — Librarian, D. Pedro Bakegoda.— 1st Member, Mr. Antonio Robert. — 2nd Id., U. José Comas Argemir. — Adjuncts: Mr. Jaime Ubach, Mr. José Cros, Mr. Francisco lirossa, Mr. Domingo Balet, Mr. José Marimon, D. José Fontseré. "

Sources: "La Imprenta" newspaper; Historical Archive Barcelona

His son Architect:

Josep Balet i Duran

José Balet i Duran (1869 - 14/05/1905) continued his career obtaining the title of Architect on 08/08/1895 and becoming a young promise of architecture, but unfortunately he died young at the age of 36 due to a long illness. His most importants works were Can Trinxeria de Cassà de la Selva, Vianl & Solsona Pantheon and the fireplace of Josep Portabella House.

He also participated in the Exhibition of Fine Arts and Artistic Industries of Barcelona 1896 together with his father and presented:

  • Building project for the Royal Academy of Moral and Political Sciences.

  • Fireplace project for the house of Josep Portabella

(Source: Diccionario Biogràfic J.F. Ràfols; Iconographic Study Can Trinxeria by Fàtima López Perez)

*I will expand the information shortly

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Vial & Solsona Pantheon by Josep Balet i DuranVial & Solsona Pantheon by Josep Balet i DuranVial & Solsona Pantheon by Josep Balet i DuranVial & Solsona Pantheon by Josep Balet i Duran
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Fireplace of Josep Portabella House

His children Domingo and Enrique

Domingo Balet Duran (1867 - 31/08/1936) studied law and first worked as a judge and later as a lawyer, but between both activities and together with his brother Enrique Balet Duran (1885 - 21/11/1936), they created the Auto Garage Terminus, one of the best car dealerships in Barcelona at the beginning of the 20th century.

Auto Garage Terminus was a multi-brand dealership and workshop, which began in 1901 selling cars of the Benz brand (currently Mercedes Benz) exclusively in Spain, but a short time later they included in their catalog, new and second-hand vehicles of the Berliet brand , Anglada, Hispano Suiza (among many other brands). This commercial activity was accompanied by the repair as well as the change of top brand tires.

Important events for the automotive sector took place at the Auto Garage, such as:

  • The sale of an Anglada to King Alfonso XIII, with its corresponding private driving lessons, given by Mr. Domingo Balet.

  • The subsequent nomination of Suppliers of the Royal House.

  • The first vehicle auctions (unique at that time in Spain).

For more information you can visit the web:

"Los Deportes" Magazine 14 August 1904

His daughter Consuelo Balet

Consuelo Balet y Duran married José Duran Altimira, who was a great businessman who managed a holding company for companies in the textile, real estate and automotive industries. We understand that Cosuelo Balet had part of the shareholding in some of these companies, since several of the companies bore her first surname and that of her husband, and apart from her, she was a woman who had good capital. In Vallromanes there is a street with her name.

The set of companies was as follows:

• Duran Balet S.A.

• Fabril y Comercial Duran S.A.

• Inmobiliaria Duran Balet S.A.

• Motor Hall S.L.

• Huracán Motors S.A.

This last company Huracán Motors S.A. was well known for manufacturing motorcycles and tricycles and occupied the facilities in Poble Nou where the well-known Razzmatazz concert hall is now located. In this company appears as the last administrator Mr. José María Duran Balet son of Consuelo Balet.

For more information visit

La Vanguardia 01/01/1958

The Signature:

Extracted from the original plans of the Pere Llibre House with his name in Spanish, which is Domingo. At the end you can read the abbreviations for "Master of Works".

Graphological study of the Domènec Balet i Nadal firm

By means of a recently carried out graphological study of its signature (which is an abbreviated biography of its author) and taking into account certain specific characteristics of its signature, the following can be distinguished:

  • By its location (lower - right) on the paper, it indicates that it manifests itself as an open, friendly and spontaneous person.

  • According to the size of the firm, medium, it tends to a moderate extroversion.

  • The predominance of curved shapes reveals aesthetic tastes, friendliness and good manners.

  • Horizontality indicates a balanced personality, which accepts its successes and mistakes.

  • Slow speed signals a thoughtful and cautious person in their actions.

  • Depending on the pressure of writing, he has a practical and active temperament.

  • The rubric reveals a personality that seeks security to achieve its goals, reinforcing its ideas before taking action.

  • Being fully readable, it indicates that it is shown to others with sincerity and authenticity from the beginning.

  • The use of capital letters in the signature allows us to deduce that he has a good self-assessment and self-image.

  • By using the first and last names, you demonstrate a balance between family and social roles. The intimate 'I' and tradition.

The foregoing characteristics of this report are general, and are entirely based on what your personal stamp represents at the instant you wrote it. Many factors are subject to permanent change according to the course of life. To have a more complete report, it should be observed in conjunction with an accompanying text and by a specialist.


Collecting and nature

Domènec Balet tells us that he had an extensive collection of architecture books, but he was also a big fan of collecting art and antiques such as porcelain, miniature jewelry, glass, paintings, engravings, sculptures and ivory (much appreciated). and exotics at the time).

On the other hand, the contemplation of nature and the agricultural exploitation were also one of his great hobbies that he carried out in his farms of fruit trees, fields of cereals and vegetables in Vallromanes.

Summer in Vallromanes

Domènec Balet bought several properties in Vallromanes (a town in the Valles Oriental) where he spent weekends and summer vacations. The Can Balet tower was his residence and the rest were used by the employees who worked the lands of the farm.

From left to the rigth: Stately Home of Can Balet; HouseFarm of Can Balet

Stately home of Can Balet

The Torre de Can Balet also named "Can Señor" is part of the Inventory of the Architectural Heritage of Catalonia. Next to it is the Can Balet farmhouse.

  • The first owner of this house is Ramon Mas Prim.

  • Later it was owned by the Master builder Gregori Arch Pila (who obtained the title of surveyor in 1867 and the following year the master builder). He led an intense professional activity to Mataró, as a master builder and as a real estate developer.

  • Later Domènec Balet bought it (we understand the friendship between professional colleagues) and he left it in 1917 to his daughter Mrs. Consuelo Balet y Duran who later also left it to his son Mr. Alberto Duran. Balet.

  • Since the end of the century, it has passed through the hands of more owners ...

Over the years, plots of the farm were sold, delimiting its land a lot. Formerly it was surrounded by a large garden, orchards of fruit trees and fields; the "Fuente del sot de les merles", a waterwheel and a lake that is still preserved.

The farm House of Can Balet

Country house located on one of the slopes of the mountain that overlooks the Riera de Vallromanes, made up of two well-differentiated bodies: the house itself, with the ridge perpendicular to the façade and a two-sided roof; and another body attached to the right side, with the trestle parallel to the rectangular façade.

In the first body there is the main entrance with a window on each side and three on the upper floor, as well as three small root arcades on the roof. The second body is characterized by its arcades on the second floor (semicircular arches supported by pillars), and its wooden beam ceiling. The entire facade is stuccoed and the two bodies form a single architectural complex.

It is included in the Inventory of the Architectural Heritage of Catalonia. Next to it is the Torre de Can Balet.

Source: Wikipedia

Can Poal Farmhouse

The Masía de Can Poal is one of the oldest buildings in Vallromanes dating from the second half of the 15th century.

Formerly the settlers lived who worked the lands of the farm and there was also a grocery store that was run by the Guardia family. Later, the heir to the Can Poal estate, Mr. Fernando Balet Benavent, sold a plot of the estate to Mr. Guardia, so that the Can Guardia store (Queviures Guardia) could be built.

In 2005 comprehensive reforms were carried out in the farmhouse.

Equity analysis:

It is a farmhouse located to the right of the parish church, which follows the typical structure of the Catalan rural house. The ridge is perpendicular to the façade, and the roof is double-sloped. The entire façade is made of stone, exposing the voussoirs of the semicircular arch portal and the stones that form the lintel and the jambs of the central window. The other two windows were later opened and are supported by a wooden lintel. The farmhouse is rectangular and retains the same structure from the back. Two buttresses located at the corners support the walls.

Location: Av. De Vilassar de Dalt

Member of the Ateneo Barcelones

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Domingo Balet was a member of the Ateneo Barcelonés and was enrolled in the Fine Arts section. In the Membership Registry book it is stated that he was until 1902, but for unknown reasons there is no record of the date of entry or the date of withdrawal from the entity. Suppose that the fact of not having the registration date could be because it was already part of one of the two predecessor entities that merged: the Ateneu Català (1860 - 1872) or the Casino Mercantil Barcelonés.

As explained extensively in the "Exhibitions" section of this website, in 1877 the Ateneu announced the winners of a contest in its minutes, naming Domènec Balet as the winner in the Locksmith section for his project: Chandeliers and metal lighting candles for a gothic church; with the motto "Nova et Veritas".

The Barcelones Athenaeum is a highly prestigious association that currently has its headquarters in the Palau Savassona and its main objectives are to promote citizen cultural self-training, promote open, transversal and constructive dialogue with civil society, be a center for disseminating debates in the and a core of creation to promote collective intellectual activity.


Gold medal in Chicago World's Fair 1893

Recreation on an original diploma

Barcelona City Council commemorative plaque - 1992 Cultural Olympics

The 1992 Barcelona Olympic Games also featured a "cultural Olympics", an alternative event to sporting events, which included artistic and cultural activities that took place between 1988 and 1992.

This commemorative metal plaque with a very careful design is located on the right side of the façade of the Pere Llibre house (Obra de Domènec Balet). It reads:

  • The name of the house: Casa Pere Llibre

  • Year of construction: 1872

  • Academic degree: Master Builder

  • The name: Domènec Balet i Nadal

  • The year of his death with a cross: 1915

  • The coat of arms of Barcelona City Council

  • The logo of the Barcelona 92 Olympic Games.

  • And the text of the Barcelona Cultural Olympics 92

* At this time we do not know why the plaque was awarded (we are investigating).

The Red Cross awards Domènec Balet a plaque of honor on 03/02/1894

Made in gold, silver and enamel

Family Tree

Click the image to open the Family Tree of Domingo Balet y Nadal

Origin of the Logo

Domènec Balet had two wooden bookcases in his office at Paseo de Gracia 20 (so far as we know, one of them is still owned by his family) and the date 1888 is inscribed on their sides, which would have been:

  • The date they were built by the carpenter.

  • The representation of some important milestone in his life.

  • Or the date of the Universal Exhibition of Barcelona in 1888. But at the moment we have not been able to find information related to his participation.

Also inside a shield there is a compass that represents the architects' guild and a flower. All these elements have been a source of inspiration for the realization of a logo that represents it.

Domènec Balet is News today (in Catalan & Spanish lenguage):

Domènec Balet and the Auto Garage Términus - Va passar aquí! Betevé

On December 30, 2021, Betevé made a report in its usual 5-minute format where the story of the legendary Auto Garage Términus dealership owned by the sons of Domènec Balet and Nadal is told, as well as a brief explanation of the Master Builder. Click here to watch the video.

Today 8/11/2021 the entity Ruta del Modernisme de Barcelona (which depends on Barcelona City Council) shares this publication on all its Social Networks about the Modernista house that bears the name of its Master of Works, the Casa Domènec Balet on Carrer Tallers 68 Bis and also refers to this website. Link

Bibliography of Domènec Balet:

New project!:

The biographical book of Domènec Balet i Nadal