FOUNDATION MONASTERY FOR THE MERCERDARIOS DESCALZOS
One of the characteristics of the noble houses throughout the 16th and 17th Centuries was the help that the religious order provided, sometimes to groups which leaded reforming movements in the foundation of Monasteries and Churches and in the maintenance of these institutions.
So this is what Mrs. Beatriz Ramírez de Mendoza did, countess of Castellar, who gave the Monastery to Fray Juan del Santísimo in Sevilla at the end of September 1603, date in which the Hermanos Mercedarios Descalzos took possession of the Almoraima Monastery, according to what is stated in the pictures preserved in the Monastery. In fact, the Religious Order is founded in this place.
The Almoraima Monastery was the first of the Reformed Order, that celebrated its tercentenary in this settlement in 2006 and always enjoyed the protection of the Counts of Castellar until 1839, when it was expropriated by the State and Los Descalzos had to abandon it.
THE ARRIVAL OF THE MEDINACELI DUCHY
In 1861, the Medinaceli Duke gained the Monastery and the 16000 hectares of La Almoraima in a dispute against the Public Treasury. Castellar became the trend in the Court.
The Medinaceli duke made the estate into one of the most selected haunted grounds of the country. Nobles, wealthy people and prestigious militaries used to meet upon invitation in the luxury living rooms of the House-Monastery in order to take part in the hunting parties organized every year in the dense forests of the term.
The meetings of high military commands were also in fashion. In fact, Her Majesty the Queen Victoria Eugenia was very fond of this place. They were the favorite meadows of the ducal house. There were gotten numerous rents from them.
THE CIVIL WAR
In 1934, the Government of the II Republic gives the expropriated soils to the City Council so they could exploit them. There was a try of collective rural cooperation in 1936 but it was unsuccessful.
During the Civil War, and once Castellar was in the hands of the National Army, the government of Burgos ordered the return of the soils to their former owners.
The adoring nuns became the residence of summer into a hospital for the injured and war prisoners during the war and the posterior time under the acceptance of the Medinaceli Duchy.
CREATION OF THE ALMORAIMA´S CORK INDUSTRY, THE TRANSITION OF RUMASA AND CURRENT STATE
In 1945 the cork enterprise of La Almoraima is created and years after prosperity, the decline came and after being declared in bankrupt, the last inheritor offered the 16000 hectares for sale with the castle included.
In 1972, the wealth set was acquired by Rumasa Enterprise. Currently, after a new and famous expropriation by the Government in 1983, the state and the House-Monastery with its pieces of art became into part of the State’s Patrimony.
Nowadays, the Monastery has become a sort of inn that offers the tourists and the visitors a landscape of exuberant forests, hunting activities and to be lodged in the rooms that once was the residence of the Counts of Castellar.