La Darbia blog

AN EXTRA-REAL EXPERIENCE

Tue, 30 April 2019
AN EXTRA-REAL EXPERIENCE
One of the most beautiful Savoy residences, the palace of Venaria, awaits us just outside Turin. Imagine a sumptuous eighteenth-century gown. And a wig full of curls, of course. Imagine a crowd of liveried valets. Imagine also the baroque music that welcomes you in the great ballroom... It is easy..

One of the most beautiful Savoy residences, the palace of Venaria, awaits us just outside Turin.

Imagine a sumptuous eighteenth-century gown. And a wig full of curls, of course. Imagine a crowd of liveried valets. Imagine also the baroque music that welcomes you in the great ballroom...

It is easy to dream within the beautiful palace of Venaria, a grandiose palace as only a royal residence can be. A solemn castle with magnificent gardens, splendid rooms, statues, fountains and sumptuous decorations. A monumental building that welcomes visitors with enchanting settings, including the solemn Galleria Grande and the spectacular Fontana del Cervo in the Court of Honor.

If you love regal palaces or like to walk in elegant parks, if you admire secular gardens and precious environments, this place really is for you.

The idea of constructing a building of great visual impact, just outside Turin, dates back to the mid-seventeenth century when Carlo Emanuele II of Savoy commenced the design of a hunting lodge that then, in the following decades, came to compete with the sumptuous Palace of Versailles. In the eighteenth century, when the Duke of Savoy obtained the title of King, the task of continuing the work was entrusted to Filippo Juvarra, who redesigned the building, expanding the original project and enriching it with architectural treasures, such as the Galleria Grande, the Chapel of Sant'Uberto and the famous stables.

After a sad period of abandonment, which began with Napoleon's military campaigns, the large Venaria complex has finally found a new life and today represents a cultural landmark for the entire surrounding area. Just like a time. There are no more kings and princesses, the nobility of the Old Regime is missing, but the palace has returned to its former glory and hosts prestigious events, exhibitions, concerts and shows.

Any advice for a visit? At the entrance it is worth stopping to take in the splendid dancing fountain that offers a suggestive «water theater» twice a day. In the immense Juvarra stables, on the other hand, the original Bucintoro is preserved, an 18th century Venetian boat that arrived in Turin after 31 days of sailing on the Po and was used for lavish parades, river parties and three royal weddings. Even the village that has sprung up around the palace deserves to be explored, as simply walking through its well-kept little streets gives the feeling of going back in time.

If we have to listen to the words of the famous photographer Steve McCurry, one of the greatest masters of contemporary photography, who exhibited his works in the Orangery of the Scuderie Juvarriane, this palace is truly a "magical place, among the most beautiful in the world".

And if he says so, he who knows about beauty...

www.lavenaria.it

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