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Palazzo del Quirinale

Palazzo del Quirinale (27)

The Palazzo del Quirinale is obviously found on Monte Quirinale, the highest of the Seven Hills of Rome. In the Middle Ages this hill was known as Monte Cavallo.

Around 1500 it was said that the Vatican was not located in the most ideal spot, given the high rates of malaria that were detected. With this in mind, Pope Gregory XIII chose to build at the top of the hill what would be the summer residence of the Popes.

For many decades, the most important artists of the time worked on the construction of the palace. Domenico Fontana designed the main façade, Carlo Maderno the chapel, and Bernini the narrow wing that runs along the Via del Quirinale. 

After the unification of Italy in 1870 it became the residence of the House of Savoy. Today, and since 1947, it has been the official residence of the President of the Italian Republic. 

You will see that this palace is guarded by uniformed men. They are the Granatieri, chosen for their height and physique. If you want to see the changing of the guard, it takes place every day at tour in the afternoon. 

The palace can only be visited on Sunday mornings and on the 2nd of June, the Day of the Republic, when the gardens are also open.

Facing the main façade of this large, orange building is the Piazza del Quirinale, where there are also important palaces. Among them is the Palazzo della Consulta, current home of the Constitutional Court. Then you will see the Palazzo Pallavicini-Rospigliosi, built by the Borghese. On the other side is the Scuderie del Quirinale, the stables currently used for temporary exhibitions. 

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