Palazzo Doria Pamphili Viterbo
Address and opening times
The address of the Palazzo Doria Pamhili is San Martino al Cimino – Viterbo (tel. +39 0761291000). The building is not open to tourists.
History and description
The Palazzo Doria Pamhili is located near the Abbazia Cistercense and used to be part of it.
Towards the middle of the 17th century the palace was completely rebuilt to serve as the residence of Donna Olimpia Maidalchini, wife of Pamphilio Pamphilj and sister-in-law of Pope Innocent X. The building, which until then had served as a warehouse and residence, was both enlarged and raised.
It is irregularly shaped and follows the slope of the land on which it was built. The entrance is opposite the abbey itself.
A second entrance on the east side leads to a vast room called cantinone (“large cellar”), which was left over from the former warehouse.
Along the south side is a bastion, which contains the so-called scala lumaca (“snail stairs”), which one must climb to reach the piano nobile.
The reception room of the piano nobile is graced by frescoes and stucco decorations, reminiscent of those in the Palazzo Doria Pamphilj in Rome. In the center of the ceiling is a large cross with the coat of arms of the Pope and his family, three irises and a dove with an olive branch in its beak.
The originality of the design is such that it might have been the work of Borromini, Pope Innocenzo X’s favorite architect.
The building was restored in the 19th century and now houses a convention center.