Touring Rome Italy - Quirinale Palace

What should we visit in Rome's Quirinale Palace district and its environs?...

We hope that you are enjoying our series of articles and guest articles on Italian tourist attractions, covering the entire country except for its major cities. In a sense we have left the best for last. We will describe what to see in Italy’s great cities neighborhood by neighborhood. You may not realize it, but Rome is divided into 20 districts. And each and every one of these districts boasts its own sightseeing attractions. If you have time, visit them all. In any case, read these articles to help plan your trip to The Eternal City. You may be in for some real surprises. Roma, Non Basta una Vita (Rome, a Lifetime is not Enough) .

The Quirinale Palace district of central Rome carries the name of the Quirnale Hill, the highest and largest of Rome’s seven hills. This was posh residential territory in classic times. The Quirinale Palace has been home to some thirty popes, four kings, and eleven presidents of the Italian Republic. Its construction started in the late Sixteenth Century as a summer residence for the Pope who died before it was completed. As you might expect for such a building the gardens are something to see. The website of the Presidency of Italy presents a virtual tour of the Palace. There’s a daily ceremony of the changing of the guard.

Just across the street from the Palace is the San Andrea al Quirinale Church, built for the Jesuits. This beautiful structure was designed by Bernini and executed by his assistant in the mid Seventeenth Century. Don’t miss the chapel of the Polish-born St. Stanislaus, containing a polychrome marble statue of the saint.

San Carlo Façade

San Carlo Façade, near Quirinale Palace

The San Carlino alle Quattro Fontane Church and convent located just south of the palace gardens was designed in the early Seventeenth Century. This church is quite small; it is often called San Carlino. Don’t miss its oval dome displaying little lanterns. Franscesco Borromini, a leading Roman Baroque architect, designed this church; it was his first major commission. He also did its façade some decades later. In fact, this façade was completed only after his death. He never occupied the crypt in the chapel because of his death by suicide.

Rome Quadriennale

Rome Quadriennale Quirinale Palace District

At the eastern boundary of the district you’ll find the Teatro dell'Opera di Roma (Rome Opera House), originally built as a theater in the late Nineteenth Century. In addition to opera, the Teatro also hosts ballets and symphonies. Just south of the Palace is the recently modernized Palazzo Delle Esposizioni that holds exhibitions including the Rome Quadriennale, dedicated to contemporary art. It’s held every four years, such as in 2012.

And wherever you go and whatever you do, check out the fine Latium or other Italian wines.

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About the Author

Levi Reiss has authored or co-authored ten books on computers and the Internet, but to be honest, he would rather just drink fine Italian or other wine, accompanied by the right foods. He teaches classes in computers at an Ontario French-language community college. Visit his website www.travelitalytravel.com devoted to Italian travel with an accent on fine Italian wine and food. Visit his central wine website www.theworldwidewine.com with weekly reviews of $10 wine and columns devoted to various aspects of wine including wine and food, humor, trivia, organic and kosher wine and lots more.

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