The Caffè Pedrocchi is the oldest and most famous café of Padua and thus the one that is always mentioned in guide books. Its piano nobile is nowadays the seat of the Museo di Risorgimento.
Caffè Pedrocchi Padua
Address and opening hours
Address: Via VIII Febbraio – 35121 Padova. Public transport: TRAM, 3,11,12,13,16,18,22,A/M/T. Opening hours: Winter time from 09.30 till 12.30 and from 15.30 till 18.00; Summer from 09.30 till 12.30 and from 15.30 till 18.00. Closed: Mondays (except when coinciding with a public holiday), January 1, 5, December 25, 26. Admission: 4 Euros (2 Euros discount). The ticket includes the entrance to the Piano Nobile of the Pedrocchi factory. The PadovaCard gives free admission to the Piano Nobile and the Museo del Risorgimento.
The Caffè Pedrocchi was built between 1826 and 1831. Its architectural style is neoclassical. Until 1916 it was open 24/7, which got it its nickname of “Café without doors”.
It was founded by the businessman Antonio Pedrocchi (1783-1852) and quickly became a hangout for intellectuals, academics and politicians.
During Italy‘s Risorgimento it was a favorite spot of patriots. On February 8th 1848, a student’s injury led to some small acts of rebellion. A plaque in the Sala Bianca (“White Room”) recalls the hole of a bullet fired by an Austrian policeman during these riots.
The building consists of two floors. The ground floor is where the actual caffetteria is located. The rooms in this part are named for the colors of their wallpaper.
When the writer Stendhal visited Padua he also frequented the café, liking its zabaione so much, that he could not refrain from mentioning this in the introduction to his famous “Certosa di Parma“. The owners of the café liked this so much that they could nor refrain from putting up a plaque mentioning this.
Rooms on the piano nobile include the Sala Rossini, de Sala Egizia and the Sala Romana. The Sala Rossini is also known as the Ballroom.
Museo del Risorgimento
Nowadays the piano nobile of the Caffé Pedrocchi is the seat of the Museum of the Risorgimento and the Modern Era.
The Risorgimento is the Italian movement that started around 1820 and led to the Unification of the country in 1870. The museum shows the involvement of Padua and its inhabitants in this important period in the history of the country.