While Pamplona's Plaza de Toros is still active and intact, Barcelona's Las Arenas bullring held its last bullfighting event in 1977, and had fallen into disrepair by the 1990s. As part of a multi-year project, Las Arenas was renovated under lead architect Richard Rogers into a "mixed-use leisure, entertainment and office complex" including a shopping mall.
Las Arenas officially opened yesterday, and one out of every ten Barcelonans reportedly showed up to check it out. In the photo above, you can see the building's been crowned with a 360-degree rooftop esplanade:
The most spectacular aspect of the intervention is the inclusion of a 100-metre-diameter habitable 'dish' with a 76-metre-diameter domed roof, floating over the façade of the bullring and structurally independent from it to cover the various activities taking place below. This 'plaza in the sky' incorporates large terraces around the perimeter with space for cafés and restaurants with stunning views over the city.
While one might imagine that pushing bullfighting aside to make room for shopping would gall Spanish cultural preservationists, a reported 70% of Spaniards "remain indifferent to the sport." The project was not without its problems and controversy, however, largely stemming from the type of head-butting a bull might find familiar. You can read about the troubled history here.