Vicenza

City of Palladio

Vicenza, ancient name “Vicetia” – also known as “Palladio’s City”, it is one of the most ancient cities in the Veneto Region. It is situated in the heart of the Veneto region just a few kilometers away from Venice, Verona, Padua and Treviso. It has one of the largest turnout in the north east of the Italian peninsula. The many architectural Palladio’s buildings, are the destination of constant tourists’ pilgrimages from all over the world. The Palladian Basilica, with its first part of the building called the “Ragione” was built in the mid-fifteenth century by unifying oldest buildings. Later on, towards the end of the fifteenth century, a new image was given to the factory by creating covered spaces for the market by means of lodges designed by architect Thomas Formenton. These works made the building alike Palazzo della Ragione in Padua.

Vicenza and masterpieces of Palladio

The Tower of Girone, for the ditch that surrounded it, or “Agony” because subsequently used as a prison, whose medieval construction dates back to twelfth century is located in Piazza of Erbe. In the thirteenth century, the local Government of Vicenza bought and assigned it to prison, archives and civic registry. The Renaissance building, Palazzo Chiericati was designed in 1550 by architect Andrea Palladio as a noble residence. However, its construction began in 1551 it was completed at the end of the seventeenth century. Since the middle century, it is the centre of the civic museum. Today, it is an art gallery richs of prints, drawings, numismatic, medieval and modern statuary. The Palace Chiericati, is part of Unesco’s human heritage.

The Olympic Theatre, also designed in 1580 by the Renaissance architect Andrea Palladio was completed in early 1585, it is considered to be the first example of covered theater of modern age. Today, the theater houses performances and concerts and, in 1994, was included into Unesco’s human heritage. The Palace Casa Pigafetta, is a rare example of florid Gothic: it was built in 1440 and takes its name from the vicentino’s navigator who provided to take care of the logbook during the historic globe circumnavigation by Ferdinand Magellan.

Villa Capra La Rotonda, nearby the city, was also built by architect Andrea Palladio in 1566. The villa, is one of the most famous architect’s masterpiece and it is still the most celebrating building in the architecture’s history of the modern days. Palazzo Leoni Montanari, baroque building dating back to 1678 was completed in the second half of the eighteenth century and was probably made by the lombard architect Giuseppe Marchi. Inside, masterpieces of Venetian paintings of the eighteenth century and a collection of ancient russian icons.

The Basilica of Saints Felice and Fortunato, dating to the tenth century, is an important example of early Christian art and historical testimonies referring to the Saints Felice and Fortunato and their martyrdom. The Shrine of Our Lady of Monteberico, located southwest of the city, consists of two churches in Gothic style – while, the church, is in baroque and classical style. The realization of the two churches is linked to the appearance of Our Lady: the former in early 1426 and the latter in middle 1428.

At the time, an important plague epidemic oppressed Vicenza causing many deaths. During the apparition, Our Lady wished the construction of the shrine in order to put an end to the plague. At the end of the first church (built in just three months) the fever was destroyed. Since 1978, the Shrine of Our Lady of Monteberico is the main patron of the city of Vicenza. The Oratory of St. Nicola da Tolentino, which construction dates back to 1505 was completed in 1678. The chapel has a classical structure; inside decorations in Baroque style with paintings of the sixteenth and seventeenth century of the Venetian school. Over the years, between 1634 and 1654, the building was subjected to some renovation works.

Museums and alternative routes

Museums: the Archeological Museum and Nature of the Holy Crown, the Museum of the Risorgimento and Resistance, the Civic Art Gallery, the Gallery of Palace Leoni Montanari, the Diocesan Museum, the Museum Palladio, the small Museum of coin and the Museum of Royal House of Portugal. The city of Vicenza is also famous for its bicycles. Quite a lot of alternative routes are offered thanks to its various cycling champions. For the palate, not to omit the wide range of wines including: the Vicenza, the Gambellara and the Colli Berici or cookery as the “Vicentina dried salt cod, rice and peas, polenta and osei (polenta with game) and bigoi cò l’arna (bigoli with duck)”.