A Palladian masterpiece inspired by the Roman Pantheon
The most famous Palladian buildings include Villa La Rotonda, a Renaissance residence just outside Vicenza, designed by Andrea Palladio. Its full name is Villa Almerico Capra Valmarana, named after the Capra brothers who completed the building after it was given to them by the first owner Paolo Almerico in 1592.
Its architecture is inspired by the Pantheon in Rome, with its square layout and impressive dome. The four entrance steps of the portico lead into the main floor corridors, forming a Greek cross that intersects in the central round hall, surrounded by the corner rooms and dressing rooms.
The building has three floors plus a mezzanine. The most important among the four main halls of the main floor are the West Hall, also called the Holy Hall due to its religious frescoes, and the East Hall, which features an allegorical depiction of the life of the building’s first owner. The stunning circular central hall, with walls decorated in trompe-l'œil, is surrounded by a balcony and covered by a domed ceiling.
From the porches, you can admire the surrounding countryside, with which the villa exists in perfect harmony. The residence is open all year, except in winter, when pre-booked guided tours are only available on Saturday mornings.