The desire to have a Cathedral in Madrid was first shown in 1567 by King Felipe II who was responsible for bringing the court to Madrid in 1561 and making it the capital of Spain. For the good of Spain. However, at this time the Escorial was being constructed which took precedence over the new cathedral project. In the end it was Felipe III who recieved permission , and the funding of 650.000 ducados, from Rome, more than annoying the then all-powerful Archdioces of Toledo.
The project moved along at a snail's pace and as time (and monarchs) passed, Felipe IV and his wife doña Isabel de Borbón moved forward with the idea of building a catheral linked to the parochia of Santa María de la Almudena. Finally in 1624, conditions were set and the cathedral planned out. Juan Gómez de Mora and Pedro Lizargárate were comissioned to take charge of the temple cathedral. That same year Felipe IV gave the project a huge step forward by getting the Town Hall of Madrid to contribute 200.000 ducados to the project.
The project was nipped in the bud shortly after due to influences from th eArchdioces of Toledo and it was not until 1738 that the then King Alfonso XII who would act as the principal advocate for the completion of the Real Catedral de Santa María de la Almudena next to the Palacio Real during the second half of the 19th century.
Another obstacle which slowed the completion of the project was the Revolution of 1868 leading up to the Alfonsine Restauration in 1875. In 1885, the same year that Alfonso XII would die, the Madrid-Alcalá diocesis became a reality and the Cathedral of Santa María de la Almudena of Madrid becomes the result of a long and complex process to bring both a dioces and cathedral to the Spanish capital. The neo-gothic cathedral as we know it today was directed by Marqués de Cubas and completed in 1885. The model pictured above was considered in it's day that of the "ideal christian temple". It was a feat of incredible magnitude that took over 300 years to be born from the day of it's conception in the mind of Felipe II in 1567.
The cathedral was only just inaugurated as the Almudena Cathedral in 1993.