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Palazzo Chigi Saracini, Siena

#9 of 49 in Historic Sites in Siena
Historic Site · Hidden Gem · Tourist Spot
The Palazzo Chigi-Saracini is a Gothic urban palace located on the Via di Città in the Terzo di Città in central Siena, region of Tuscany, Italy. In 2014 it housed the Accademia Musicale Chigiana.
It was built by the Marescotti family in the 12th century. It was the house of Count Galgano Lucarini Saracini and then it became property of Fabio Chigi Lucarini Saracini. The palace is described as a "Gothic beauty with a curved facade and back courtyard."
In the mid-twelfth century, the aristocratic Marescotti family of Siena, owners of a castle at the site, erected the tower that still stands today next to the palace. Their emblem (an eagle with outstretched wings) is still visible on the trefoil windows of the facade. Subsequent reconstructions led to the Gothic structure visible now.
In 1506, the Piccolimini-Mandoli family acquired the building and refurbished the palace interiors, cortile and loggia in a Renaissance style.
In 1770, the owner Marcantonio Saracini undertook a restoration of the building that lasted until 1824, when Galgano, his son, inherited it. Preserving the original Gothic façade, the castle matches the characteristic curvature of this narrow medieval street. The interior is renovated and modernized by Agostino Fantastici, and art collections are added.
In 1877, after Galagano Saracini died, the palace was inherited by a Fabio Saracini, the new owner, who died in a hunting accident passing the castle on to his nephew Guido. Count Guido Chigi Saracini, the castle’s last owner, restored the building’s exterior and interior with the help of architect Arturo Viligiardi (especially the rococo style concert hall). In 1932, he founded the Chigiana music academy to which he bequeathed the building after his death in 1965.
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  • The music at the Chigiana is not to be missed on any trip to Siena. Concerts are usually very affordable--from 5 to 25 euro. The concert hall is so intimate that you breathe the music with the...  more »
  • In a courtyard between the Campo and the Duomo is this charming house used as a music venue. Drinks and food are served in the outdoor cafe.  more »

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