The Palazzo Reale (Royal Palace) is one of the biggest tourist attractions in Turin and is located in the Piazza Castello in the centre of the city. It is a huge, square building with a large courtyard. It was built in the mid-17th century.
Royal Palace Turin
Address: Piazzetta Reale, 10122 Torino, Italy. Telephone: +39 011 4361455. Opening hours: Tuesday to Sunday: 8.30-19.30. No tickets sold after 18.00. Closed on: Monday. Entrance fee: 10 Euro. Public transport: Garibaldi (stop 245): lines 4, 7, 11, 27, 51, 57 and Star 2; Castello (stops 471 and 472): lines 13, 13/, 15, 55 and 56.
History and description
The Royal Palace was built around 1646 for Carlo Emanuele II, the King of Sardinia, who lived there until 1859. The first King of Italy, Vittorio Emmanuele II, also had his residence in the Palazzo Reale. The rooms and halls of the palace are therefore richly decorated with magnificent rugs, candelabras and beautifully painted ceilings.
Work was started in 1646, when Christina of France began the reconstruction of the old Bishop’s Palace (Palazzo del Vescovo).
The first architect to work on the palace was Ascanio Vittozzi. Subsequent architects of the court contributing to its construction were Carlo and Amedeo di Castellamonte and Maurizio Valperga. Carlo Morello completed the facade in 1958.
The Cappella della Sindone was the work of Guarino Guarini.
In the early 18th century, Filippo Juvarra was responsible for the Scala delle Forbici and for a new look what used to be the Galleria della Regina (“Queen’s gallery”) and is now the seat of the Royal Armoury.
After Juvarra, Benedetto Alfieri took over the job of renovatin the Royal Apartments.
The building served as the residency of the Italian royal family till the end of World War II. In 1946, after a referendum Italy became a Republic and the royal family was banned from the country.
Façade and staircase
The façade dates back to 1658 and was designed by Carlo Morello. Domenico Ferri designed the monumental staircase in 1864. It is decorated with mostly 19th century paintings and sculptures.
At the entrance, there are statues of the mythical twins Castor and Pollux, who, according to Turin lore, also used to stand guard at the border between the holy and devilish halves of the city.
The small square in front of the palace is called Piazzetta Reale. It is protected by a famous cast-iron gate, which was also designed by Juvarra.
Sala dei Corazzieri, Sala del Trono, Gabinetto Cinese, Galleria del Daniel, Sala del Trono della Regina, Sala da Ballo, Sala da Pranzo, Camera dell’Alcova.