There is less than one month to see Palazzo Farnese, the most imposing Italian palace of the 16th century, now hosting the French Embassy (therefore, usually closed to the public). The new French ambassador decided to open the gates of this beautiful Renaissance building for a few months and wanted some of the best pieces of the original palace’s collections to be brought back for the occasion to show how Palazzo Farnese really was at the time. So hurry up and take advantage of this unique opportunity, as we did some weeks ago!
Not only French Ambassadors but also Italian kings (Francis II of the Two Sicilies) and popes (Paul III) stayed here during the centuries as the building was the Roman residence of one of the country’s most powerful families: the Farnese. A key building for Rome’s history, for its outstanding location in one of the city’s most beautiful squares and for the architectural and artistic value of the interiors and of the palace itself.
The ticket includes an audioguide (in Italian or English) and the visit starts from an enchanting, little green inner garden in stark contrast with the buildings, roads and fountains of the surrounding area. You then visit the perfect courtyard, co-designed and decorated by Michelangelo.
You then climb an impressive ring of stairs to finally enter the palace. Paintings by artists of the caliber of Tiziano, frescoes by Carracci, coins, tapestries and ancient Roman sculptures and colossal statues from the Archeological and Capodimonte Museums of Naples will please your eyes.
If you don’t want to book in advance, go during work-days but you won’t then see the most beautiful room of the Palazzo, the Ambassador’s office, overlooking the piazza. Otherwise, for the full tour, wait for the week-end but book first unless you are willing to wait in the line.
Closed on Tuesday. Monday and Wednesday from 9am to 7pm, Thursday to Sunday 9am to 9pm. Until April 27.