A trip to Genoa is not complete if you do not visit Via Garibaldi and the system of the noble Rolli Palaces.
These 42 noble residences, protected by Unesco, are an extraordinary example of urban and architectural development. The Palazzi dei Rolli with their high ceilings, grand staircases and elaborate stucco ornamentation, were on an official list (the rolli) of palaces where visiting dignitaries such as kings, princes, diplomats and ambassadors could stay during Genoa’s Golden Age, between the 16th and 17th century, when its wealthy merchants became the bankers for much of Europe.
Today many of these Rolli Palaces have been converted to public offices, beautiful shops, museums, cafes, restaurants, banks, luxury antique shops and private homes.
Let’s have a look at three of them
Palazzo Rosso (The Red Palace) owned by the genoese Brignole Family today is an art gallery and there are paintings and sculptures by artists who were sponsored by the Palace owners. These nobles were great art connoisseurs and recognized talents of young artisits such as Van Dick, who was commissioned many works in Genoa.
In Palazzo Bianco (The White Palace) there are magnificent art works of Ribens, Van Dyck, Caravaggio and other Genoese artisits. This Palazzo was donated to the city of Genoa in 1894 becoming an art gallery.
Walking through Via Garibladi brings you also to the beautiful Palazzo Tursi, the Town Hall. These Palazzo has an open inner courtyard bounded by storeys of colonnades and in one of it rooms you can find “Il Cannone”, Paganini’s violin. This instrument was donated by Paganini in his will to the town of Genoa.
There are many others that should not be missed, some of them are still privates and, if by chance, you are lucky to be in Genoa during the “Rolli Days” you can enter them for free.
Via Garibaldi from the top – A tip to end your trip day in Genoa
Genoa medieval center could appear chaotic and to give a sense to it, I always suggest to take the Paradise lift and go up to Castelletto to admire the city from one of the greatest panoramic point the town offers. Take a coffee or a gelato in one of the bars and enjoy the pleasure of the Italian lifestyle!
Wants to go deeper and visit Genoa, aka “The Superba”? Have a look at our trip “Genoa, The Great Beauty!”