Lookout towers are a must in seaside cities. At first, they were at the service of trade: they stood close to the port, controlling the movement of ships and merchants. In Cádiz, for instance, a major port in the trade between Spain and the Americas, they were a common sight.
In Málaga, the most distinguished houses in the vicinity of the port were topped with lookout towers. With time, they became a widespread architectural element that could be seen in most houses.
The oldest lookout towers still rising in Málaga date back to the eighteenth century. They can be found in the Palace of the Count of Villalcázar (23 Cortina del Muelle Street) and in the stately building housing the offices of the Government of Andalusia (Alameda Principal).
The Palace of the Counts of Buenavista, now housing the Picasso Museum Málaga, boasts an even older tower that can be traced back to the sixteenth century.
Further examples of lookout towers can be seen in Fresca Street, Granada Street and Atarazanas Street.