At the end of the 19th Century building work was started on the Almudena Cathedral which was constructed on the site of the old Santa María la Mayor church to honour the patron virgin of Madrid. In 1883 the first stone of this impressive monument was laid, located in one of the most beautiful areas of the city. In 1911 the crypt was opened for worship, but construction was halted until after the Civil War, when architects Fernando Chueca Goitia and Carlos Sidro were placed in charge of the project. In spite of everything, the building process was extremely slow. In 1993, the cathedral was consecrated for worship by His Holiness Pope John Paul II. The inside of the church retains a Gothic style, although the outside is Classicist.