A place travelers can visit Vecchio Palace
Reviews: Vecchio Palace
General description: Vecchio PalacePallazo Vecchio
The splendid palace with merlons and a 94 m high tower was built by Arnolfo di Cambio from 1299-1314 and was originally an official seat and residence of the Republic's highest dignitaries.
History of the Pallazo Vecchio
In 1540 Cosimo I turned the medieval palace into a ducal residence and made it even more spectacular with magnificent conversions and extensions. The medieval façades remained largely unmodified. During this period, Giorgio Vasari was responsible for the construction work who, in his haste, also managed to overpaint irreplaceable works of art such as Leonardo da Vinci's Battle of Anghiari in the Hall of the Five Hundred with his own works in praise of the Medicis. The palace was given its present name - Palazzo Vecchio (Old Palace) when the court moved to the "new" palace, the Palazzo Pitti. The beautiful inner courtyard, redesigned in 1470 by Michelozzo, was decorated with views of Austrian cities in 1565 on the occasion of the marriage of Ferdinand I and Johanna of Austria. The Quartieri Monumentali (Monumental Apartments) are on the first floor.
Art at the Palazzo Vecchio
The city council used to meet in the mighty Salone dei Cinquecento, (Hall of the Five Hundred), which was later turned into an audience room by Cosimo I. 53.7 m long, 22.4 wide and 17.8 m high, this is the biggest room in the city and, like the Sala dei Dugento with its splendidly carved wooden ceiling by Michelozzo, is still used for special events. Marble statues stand in front of Vasari's monumental battle paintings, while beneath them you can see Michelangelo's "Genius of Victory" and Giambologna's "Defeat of the Pisans". The second floor contains the Quartieri degli Elementi (Apartments of the Elements) and the apartments of Eleonora of Toledo. The adjacent Cappella della Signoria was decorated with frescos by Ghirlandaio in 1514. The Sala dell'Udienza with its richly carved ceiling and marble portal by Benedetto da Maiano, and the Sala dei Gigi - which is completely covered in the French fleur-de-lis motif - are particularly magnificent. In the middle of this room is Donatello's bronze of Judith and Holofernes. Machiavelli once worked as the Secretary of the Republic in the segretaria. Another interesting feature of the Guardaroba is the cabinets, which are painted with 53 maps dating back to 1563-75. Exhibitions are held in the oldest part of the palace, the former armoury. The entrance is on the left-hand side of the palace.
Touring the Palazzo Vecchio
Since 2000, the venerable Palazzo Vechio has been rejuvenated. There are now 12 multimedia stations offering contemporary insights into the building's history, art and architecture. In addition, parts of the palace which were previously inaccessible, can now be viewed on "percorsi segreti" - so-called "secret" guided tours. A new bookshop and ticket office have been set up in the second inner courtyard, the Cortile della Dogana. The entrance to the Museo dei Ragazzi, a studio museum for both adults and children, is also here.
The city is governed from an 800-year old palazzo.
Piazza della Signoria
Mon-Wed, fr-Sun: 09:00 - 19:00
Thurs: 09:00 - 14:00
121 Pictures: Vecchio Palace
Vecchio Palaceby Kornelia in October 14
Vecchio Palaceby Наталия in May 11
Vecchio Palaceby Natalya in May 11