Built between 1482 and 1533, this group of buildings was originally used for trading in silk (hence its name, the Silk Exchange) and it has always been a centre for commerce. It is a masterpiece of late Gothic architecture. The grandiose Sala de Contratación, in particular, illustrates the power and wealth of a major Mediterranean mercantile city in the 15th and 16th centuries.
In the 15th century, Valencia’s commercial prosperity reached its peak thanks to the important silk industry as well as the trade of other materials. They brought commercial and social revolution to the city. Nevertheless, why did the trade of silk and other materials prosper here in Valencia? It’s because of the geological location of it, a city playing the role of both the start and the end of considerable economic transactions.
Because of this prosperity, the General Council of the City saw the necessity and opportunity and initiated the construction of La Lonja de la Seda. Nowadays, this building has become a witness to the Valencian Golden Age and a representative monument of the civic Gothic style. It was declared a National Monument in 1931 and a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1996.