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Published July 26, 2002 Updated July 11, 2023

Naipes La Española by Vigor S.R.L.

Naipes La Española Spanish-suited playing cards manufactured by Vigor S.R.L., Buenos Aires, c.1955-75.

Argentina Vigor Barcelonesa La Española Spanish Suited Add to Collection

Naipes LA ESPAÑOLA Spanish-suited playing cards by Vigor S.R.L., Buenos Aires, 1955-75

Naipes La Española was one of Vigor’s leading brand of Spanish-suited playing cards, alongside Naipes Barcelonesa, La Estrella and Chinita. Previously these had been produced by Igor Domicelj (c.1950-55) who was the company's predecessor, operating at the same business address: Tejedor 244-256, Buenos Aires.

The logo on the fours of cups and coins, and the wrapper (or box), depicts a Spanish lady wearing a shawl beneath a Moorish archway. Over the years the company name and details changed, various box designs came and went, but the cards inside were basically the same.

The original Patent Office Registration document, dated 22nd June 1955, shows early designs for the box and card backs. The images below show successive editions of Naipes La Española.

Naipes La Española c.1955

Above: Naipes La Española manufactured by Vigor S.R.L. c.1955.

Naipes La Española c.1958

Above: Naipes La Española manufactured by Vigor S.R.L. c.1958. There are slight differences in the typography and information, in particular the capital value of the company is now $ 2,000,000 pesos.


Around the 1960 the company name changed from Vigor S.R.L. to Vigor S.A.C. e I.

Naipes La Española c.1955
Naipes La Española c.1958
Naipes La Española c.1960s

Naipes La Española, 1960s

Above: Naipes La Española manufactured by Vigor S.A.C. e I., 1960s.

Naipes La Española made by Gráfica S.A. c.1975

Above: later edition of Naipes La Española, 1970s. There are no details on the cards, but the manufacturer's address is now given on the box as: Calle 58 Ex Lamadrid 1.400 Villa Maipú, San Martin. This is the address for Gráfica S.A. who appear to have taken over the brand.

In all the above examples, the actual card designs are based on those of Segundo de Olea (Cadiz, Spain) which had been imported into Argentina since the 19th century. They are still used today by Gráfica 2001 / Naipes La Española who have adopted this old brand name as the new company name.

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By Simon Wintle

Member since February 01, 1996

Founder and editor of the World of Playing Cards since 1996. He is a former committee member of the IPCS and was graphics editor of The Playing-Card journal for many years. He has lived at various times in Chile, England and Wales and is currently living in Extremadura, Spain. Simon's first limited edition pack of playing cards was a replica of a seventeenth century traditional English pack, which he produced from woodblocks and stencils.


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