The Spanish founded Cartagena, officially known as Cartagena de Indias, in 1533. The city rapidly became a thriving commercial port, where precious stones and minerals from the New World awaited shipment back to Spain. Situated in a bay on the Caribbean Sea, Cartagena had the most extensive fortifications in South America, once guarded by 29 stone forts and a high wall of coral-stone measuring 16-miles long, 40-feet high and 50-feet wide. Completed in 1657, the Castle of San Felipe de Barajas is said to be the most grandiose work of military architecture erected by Spain in the Americas. Today, Cartagena's riches are found in the Boca Grande, an area of the city with beautiful waterfront hotels, trendy restaurants, casinos and boutiques.