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THE TÍO PEPE NEON SIGN LIGHTS UP THE NEW YEAR AGAIN

From its new location at Puerta del Sol 11 and after three years missing, the Tío Pepe neon sign will illuminate the emblematic Madrid square at the stroke of the New Year. The “Sun from Andalusia” shines again in Madrid’s skyline, back to complete one of the most representative postcards of the city at one of the most special nights of the year.

After several restoration works on the neon sign and the lightening of its structure, this rejuvenated icon, now adapted to the characteristics of its new location, has been shining again since last May 8th. The three years elapsed since the sign was removed from its historic location have been marked by a constant outpouring of support, love and affection, showing that Tío Pepe is an icon of all and for all.

At last, the Tío Pepe neon sign was crowning Puerta del Sol again as the bell struck the coming of the New Year. Shining with its own light from an outstanding location worth of it, the famous bottle of fino wine, dressed with a jacket, a hat and a guitar, became the best companion for those who have toasted and celebrated this big event from Madrid’s Puerta del Sol.

 

November 25th, 1935. A municipal licence for the installation of the first González Byass sign –on the occasion of the company’s centenary– was requested.

1936. A first sign reading “González Byass”, with the slogan “Wines, Cognac, Sherry” and the image of a wine tasting glass, was installed at Puerta del Sol, 1.

July 10th, 1956. A licence is obtained to modify the neon sign at Puerta del Sol, 1.

1958. A new neon is installed, featuring a human-shaped bottle and the slogan [translated] “Tío Pepe. Bottled sun from Andalusia. González Byass.”

May 20th, 2009. González Byass requests an exemption of its neon sign from the Bylaw Regulating Outdoor Advertising in Madrid, which prohibits, in general terms, outdoor advertising.

July 3rd, 2009. González Byass obtains its advertising permit.

April 2011. The neon sign is removed from Puerta del Sol 1, after a request –from the owners of the building– is accepted to carry out maintenance and restoration works on the rooftop.

June 2012. The owners of the building at Puerta del Sol 1 announce that the neon sign will not return to its previous location.

December 2012. The new location of the Tío Pepe neon at Puerta del Sol 11 is announced.

November 2013. The Madrid City Council grants a licence that will allow the beginning of the works for the restoration of the Tío Pepe neon sign at Puerta del Sol, 11.

Morning of April 21st, 2014. The lifting and installation of the sign begins.

May 8th, 2014. The Tío Pepe neon sign shines again at Puerta del Sol.

31st December 2014. The Tío Pepe neon sign presides over the New Year’s strokes at Puerta del Sol again.