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Palaces in Madrid

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Spain
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Royal Palace of Madrid
Madrid's Royal Palace was built in the 18th century by order of Philip V on the site of the old Alcázar fortress, a former Moorish castle. Sachetti began the works in 1738, and the building was completed in 1764. Sabatini designed the southeast wing and the great staircase, or staircase of honour. It has a square floor plan with a large central courtyard. The Puerta del Príncipe gateway on the east side gives access to the central courtyard. The Sabatini and Campo del Moro Gardens are among the Palace's other attractions, as well as its several different façades. There is some debate as to its artistic style; it is thought by some experts to belong more to the Baroque, and by others to the Neo-classical style. Of particular note among its numerous rooms are the Royal Guards' Room, the Columns Room, the Hall of Mirrors and King Charles III's room. It also contains paintings by Velázquez, Goya, Rubens, El Greco and Caravaggio.
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Plaza de Cibeles
The stunning Palacio de Cibeles is not only the headquarters of Madrid City Council, it is also home to CentroCentro. A recent addition to the renowned Paseo del Arte, the cultural centre boasts a packed programme of activities that revolve around the city and includes exhibitions, workshops, conferences and concerts. Next to the entrance hall, where you’ll find interactive information screens, there is a colourful lounge where visitors can sit back and read, connect to WiFi or enjoy some people-watching through the large windows that look out onto Plaza de Cibeles. The building has two restaurants: Colección Cibeles on the ground floor and Palacio de Cibeles on the 6th. Both are open Monday to Sunday. Also on the sixth floor is Terraza Cibeles, a great rooftop bar where you can relax with a pre-dinner drink or mid-afternoon snack as you take in the wonderful views of the Plaza de Cibeles and the Madrid skyline. For even more breathtaking vistas, head up to the Mirador observation deck on the 8th floor.
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Carthusian monastery
Before the building was ceded to the Carthusian order, it was the recreational residence of Henry III of Spain, who decided to build this palace on one of his hunting reserves. The building was subsequently restored when his son King John II came to the throne, following a design by John of Cologne. Construction was finally completed in the reign of Queen Isabella, and the top architects, sculptures and painters of the time were employed for the job, including figures such as Simon of Cologne, Gil de Siloé and Pedro Berruguete. The Carthusian monastery became one of the treasures of the Gothic style of the late 15th century.
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Ajuria-Enea Palace
The Palace of Ajuria-Enea is known, above all for being the headquarters of the Basque Government. Apart from its administrative function, it contains monuments, history, and art of great value.
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Viana Palace
This palace museum has an extensive collection of items from Cordoba including furniture and coffered objects. Of particular note is the staircase which gives access to the upper floor. This stately mansion was originally a single building that was extended with the adjoining buildings, and today occupies a large area with a predominance of courtyards and gardens.
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Barrio del Carmen and its Palaces
This thousand-year-old city neighbourhood grew between two walls, the Muslim and the Christian. A walk through its labyrinthine cobbled streets flanked by imposing medieval buildings takes us to back to other times in history.
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Episcopal Palace
This Modernist building in the neo-Gothic style consists of a castle, church and stately mansion, and is the site of the Los Caminos Museum. This monument was designed by Gaudí himself in 1887, although it was ultimately completed by the architect Luis de Querejeta.
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Euskalduna Palace
The Euskalduna Palace Conference Centre or Euskalduna Palace Conference and Performing Arts Centre, was the second building built in the urban area of Abandoibarra after the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao. Opened in 1999, it was designed by architects Federico Soriano and Dolores Palacios in corten steel as a symbol of the last vessel built in the old Euskalduna shipyard, wich had occupied this space for decades. It now runs a full programme of concerts, opera and theatre.
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Huesca City Hall
This splendid old Aragonese Renaissance palace with imposing towers on either side, a wooden roof and imposing staircase forming a beautiful gallery, dates back to the 16th century. Inside the Court the old wooden roof and ceiling can be observed which continues into the old Hall of Justice housing the painting by Jose Casado del Alisal, dating back to 1880 and depicting the infamous legend of the Bell of Huesca. To the right of the City Hall is the old Imperial College Santiago, founded in 1534, which was once part of the most prestigious University of Huesca for over three hundred years.
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The Episcopal Palace
This one was demolished to give a much cleaner view to the facade of the Cathedral. Currently the Episcopal Palace occupies a place close to what used to be the Palacio del Alcázar.
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Miramar Palace
Miramar Palace was built in 1893 on the order of Queen María Cristina of Austria, who used to spend her summers in Donostia/San Sebastián. After considering other places such as Monte Urgull and Aiete, the queen settled on this location, where there had previously been a hermitage which had to be moved to another spot. Nowadays, if you visit the Antiguo neighbourhood you will find the palace among its streets. In first impressions, the palace is reminiscent of English noble country houses. Designed by the English architect Selden Womun and built by the master craftsman José Goikoa, for years it remained in the hands of the Spanish Royal Family, serving as their summer residence and as the college of Juan Carlos de Borbón.
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The Casa de Pilatos
The Casa de Pilatos is a combination of Italian Renaissance styles and the Spanish Mudejar style. It is considered a prototype Andalusian palace. Construction of the palace began in 1483, at the initiative and desire of Pedro Enríquez de Quiñones (IV Adelantado Mayor of Andalusia) and his second wife, Catherine de Ribera, the founders of the Casa de Alcalá.
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Episcopal Palace
16th - 18th centuries. The Bishop's Palace is a series of buildings that were joined while being built until the large block was completed in the 18th century that took up the whole of the block. It features the impressive Baroque façade facing the Plaza del Obispo.
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Biscainhos Museum
Located in a 16th century manor house, the museum has a permanent collection of furniture, ceramics, glass and clocks displayed in situ to recreate the decor of an 18th century manor house
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Stock Exchange Palace
A National Monument, the Palácio da Bolsa (Stock Exchange Palace) is the property and headquarters of the Commercial Association of Porto. It was designed by Joaquim da Costa Lima in a neoclassical style in 1842.
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Parc Central de Nou Barris
The park covers a surface area of 17 hectares and gives Nou Barris a pleasant, modern appearance in keeping with the residential area where it is located. It blends in perfectly with the site and its undulating landform has a lot of surprises in store.
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The Palacio de Estoi
The pink Estoi Palace is the finest example of Rococo architecture found within the Algarve, while the carefully maintained grounds contain beautiful Azulejos tiles.
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The National Palace
The gothic styled Palácio Nacional de Sintra is situated in the heart of Sintra and was the most lived in royal residence, being continual used from the 15th century up until the fall of the monarchy in 1910. This is the palace that king Afonso VI (1650s) was imprisoned during his later life, as he was deemed, by his brother, too unstable to rule the country.
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The Pena Palace
The exquisite Palacio da Pena is regarded as one of the finest tourist attractions of Portugal and will be a highlight of any visit to Sintra. The vividly painted palace was commissioned in 1842, by King Ferdinand II who championed the arts, literature and music. The king wished the palace to reflect that of a scene from an opera and the extravagant Pena Palace was constructed.
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Monserrate Palace and Gardens
Visit the luxurious gardens and greenhouses, bridges, statues, waterfalls and fountains that make Monserrate one of the must-visit places on your stay in Lisbon.
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La Almudaina Royal Palace
La Almudaina Palace was the seat of the independent kingdom of Majorca during the reigns of Jaime I, Sancho I and Jaime II, until it became part of the kingdom of Aragon under Pedro IV. The castle visible today is the result of modifications to the Muslim fortress constructed from 1281.
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The Palace of Pops
Avignon has a magnficent urban landscape. The Rocher des Doms overlooks the city and the Rhône. Here there is an exceptional architectural group which includes the Pont d'Avignon (also known as Pont Saint Bénezet, the Ramparts, the Petit Palais, the Doms Cathedral and the massive walls of the Palace of the Popes, with four impressive towers in each corner. This unique architectural ensemble has been ranked as a UNESCO World Heritage site. The biggest Gothic palace in the world: tour 24 rooms! Museum space, priceless frescoes. Audioguide in 11 languages
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The Old Major
Several buildings have stood on these foundations since the 5th century but the current Roman Provencal style church built in pink stone from the Couronne quarries dates back to the mid-12th century.
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Jacques Coeur Palace
Born in Bourges some time around the year 1400, Jacques Coeur rapidly rose to the top of the social ladder. After his appointment as Finance Minister to the King and being made a nobleman, he began the construction of his Palace, which was finished around 1450. This monument was unique in France for its time but illustrates well the original personality of its builder. It is a precursor of the mansions of the Renaissance period: the large main building is constructed against the Gallo-Roman wall. The galleries running around the courtyard link it to the chapel over the main doorway. The façade on the street side and that of the main building are beautifully decorated with Jacques Coeur's royal emblem, together with a multitude of sculptures portraying religious themes, Jacques Coeur's travels or scenes of everyday life.
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The Collegiale Saint-Pierre-la-Cour
Place of exhibitions, concerts and cultural events in Le Mans. Backing onto the Roman ramparts, which were altered during the medieval period, is the Collégiale Saint-Pierre-la-Cour, once the chapel of the palace of the Comtes du Maine.
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Prince's Palace of Monaco
The Prince's Palace is the private residence of the ruling Prince but the State Apartments are open for public visits part of the year. The original fortress and ramparts were built by the Genoese in 1215 and throughout the centuries was transformed into one of the most luxurious residences in the style of Louis XIV. Prince Honore II was responsible for re-assembling the rich collections of art, which had been auctioned off during the French Revolution when the Palace was turned into a hospital for the Italian Army. However, Prince Rainier III is credited for restoring the Palace to its former glory and the magnificent state in which it can be seen today. Beginning at the top of the Hercule Gallery and descending on to the main courtyard is a spectacular double-revolution Carrera marble staircase dating from the 13th century and inspired by a similar staircase at the Chateau of Fontainebleau. Adorning the gallery walls are frescoes of mythological figures attributed to Francesco Mazzucchelli dating from the 16th century and the Genovese artist Orazio Ferrari in the 17th century. The frescoes in the Palatine chapel in the north end of the main courtyard depict the history of Saint Devote, the patron Saint of the Principality. The chapel, built-in 1665, is dedicated to Saint John the Baptist.
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Chateau de thorens
950 years of history through keeps, guardroom, kitchen: richly furnished rooms, decorated with artworks. Residence of St François de Sales and holiday destination of the Prime Minister of Piedmont-Sardinia Count Cavour, this castle contains many memories.
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El Bahia Palace
“Bahia”: literally, the marvellous, the brilliant, this name probably refers to the favourite wife of Ba ahmed, the grand vizier who had the palace built. The plans were designed by the Marrakchi architect si Mohamed el Mekki el Mesfioui, like a real labyrinth reflecting the whims of a powerful man. The best Moroccan and andalousian craftsmen worked on this palace for fourteen years. The tiles were imported from Tetouan, the marble from Meknes while the cedar wood used for the painted and shimmering ceilings came from the atlas.
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El Badi Palace
Dar el Badii, the unrivalled palace was built between 1578 and 1603 by Yacoub el Mansour, an almohade ruler. The richest raw materials, some of which came from india were chosen for its construction: gold, onyx, italian marble…The andalusian influence in the plans of the palace is undeniable and one may think that the unknown architect must have come from granada. an almost absolute symetry was imposed in the plan of this magnificent residence completely built on arches with extremely solid bricks. The interior gardens, called gardens of desire, of which only an immense esplanade remains today with artificial lakes and orange trees, are surrounded by the ruins of the palace and high walls on which a multitude of storks is nestled.
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Royal Palace
In 1563, with the transfer of the ducat's capital from Chambéry to Turin, Emanuele Filiberto of Savoy established his residence in the palace of the bishop at the Duomo; already in 1584, Carlo Emanuele I entrusted the architect Ascanio Vittozzi with the construction of a new factory. After 1643, with the regency of Maria Cristina of France, the direction of the work passed to Carlo di Castellamonte and then to Carlo Morello.
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Museum of Modern Art - Former Episcopal Palace
The Museum of Modern Art was born from the donation made to the State in 1976 by Pierre and Denise Lévy, Trojan industrialists and great art lovers.
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The Joan of Arc Historial
The Joan of Arc Historial, the largest site dedicated to the memory of Joan of Arc, is set in the heart of the Archbishop’s Palace of Rouen. Closely linked to Joan of Arc’s destiny, this site of exceptional architectural quality houses the remains of the room known as l’Officialité, the ‘Official Room’, where her sentence was pronounced in 1431, and where her rehabilitation trial took place in 1456.
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Palace of Tau
Transformed at the end of the 17th century by Jules Hardouin-Mansart and Robert de Cotte, the Palace of Tau still holds rooms that have retained their medieval aspect. This is the case with the Palatine Chapel (13th century) and the Tau Room, in which the coronation banquet was held. Decorating the walls are 15th century tapestries which tell the story of "Mighty King Clovis". The royal treasury's most remarkable objects are Charlemagne's talisman (9th century) and Saint Remi's chalice (12th century). The Sainte-Ampoule, or "holy flask", contains the holy oil with which new kings were anointed during the coronation ceremony.