Els Quatre Gats was a famous café in Barcelona which opened on 12 June 1897. Active until 1903, Els Quatre Gats became one of the main centers of Modernisme in Barcelona.
It also operated as a hostel, a cabaret, a pub and a restaurant.. The artist Ramon Casas i Carbó largely financed this bar on the ground floor of Casa Martí (1896), a building by the architect Josep Puig i Cadafalch in Carrer Montsió near the center of Barcelona. Els Quatre Gats was reconstructed during the transition to democracy, in 1978. Pablo Picasso visited this pub–restaurant often in his early art career.
“Four Cats” is a colloquial Catalan expression that means “only a few people” and the name of Els Quatre Gats is derived from this sentence. The four founders of the café, Pere Romeu, Santiago Rusiñol, Ramon Casas, and Miguel Utrillo, also chose this name as a tribute to Le Chat Noir, “The Black Cat,” a celebrated Parisian café.
Els Quatre Gats closed due the Spanish Civil War, in 1936. Many years had to pass before Els Quatre Gats went out of its lethargy and its path started again. At the end of the 70s, three gastronomic businessmen: Pere Moto, Ricard Alsina and Ana Verdaguer, got associated, with new proposals for the cultural environment of Barcelona, for opening its doors again.