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Palazzo Altemps

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Attractions Details

📌 Address

Piazza di Sant'Apollinare, 46, 00186 Roma RM, Italy

Opening Hours

9:30 AM - 7:00 PM

💸 Entrance Fee

EUR 2

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expert
Ambra
Local tour guide
"Make sure to visit Palazzo Altemps on a Thursday late afternoon; not only is it less crowded, but you'll catch the golden hour that gives a magical glow to the beautiful Renaissance architecture and sculptures. Also, don't miss out on the hidden courtyard garden – it's a serene spot often overlooked by tourists, perfect for a moment of tranquility away from Rome's bustling streets."

What is Palazzo Altemps?

Palazzo Altemps is a historical palace located in the heart of Rome, a stone's throw away from Piazza Navona. This elegant building, which now serves as a museum, houses a remarkable collection of classical sculptures that are part of the Museo Nazionale Romano. These artifacts include Greek and Roman antiquities that tell a story of cultural heritage and artistic legacy.

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The palace itself is an architectural beauty, displaying the grandeur of Renaissance Rome. The Palazzo Altemps not only showcases ancient sculptures but also beautifully frescoed rooms, each telling its own narrative. It is a lesser-known gem that offers a tranquil respite from the bustling tourist spots, providing visitors with a more intimate experience with history and art.

History of Palazzo Altemps

The Palazzo Altemps was built in the late 15th century and initially served as a residence for the Riario family, a noble clan of the era. In 1568, the palace was acquired by Cardinal Marco Sittico Altemps, for whom the palace is now named. Under his ownership, extensive renovations were undertaken, transforming the building into a standard of Renaissance beauty and status.


Cardinal Altemps was a patron of the arts and collected numerous sculptures, many of which still grace the halls and courtyards of the palace. Through the centuries, the palace changed owners and purposes, but it retains its historical significance as a collector's haven. In the 1990s, the building was restored and opened to the public as part of the Museo Nazionale Romano.

Why is Palazzo Altemps Important?

Palazzo Altemps is important for several reasons. First and foremost, it is a cultural repository that safeguards precious masterpieces from ancient times. The significance of this collection extends beyond mere aesthetics; each piece has its own historical and mythological context, which adds layers of meaning to the visitor's experience.


Moreover, the preservation of this palace and its collection offers invaluable insights into the history of art collecting and the role these noble families played in shaping Rome's cultural landscape. The Palazzo Altemps also serves as a paradigm of Renaissance architecture and design, which has greatly influenced the urban fabric of the city.

Things to Do & See at Palazzo Altemps

Visitors to Palazzo Altemps can admire a treasure trove of artifacts, including the famous Ludovisi collection which contains the refined Ludovisi Throne and the poignant Galatian Suicide statue. There are four main collections within the museum: the Boncompagni Ludovisi collection, the Mattei collection, the Altemps collection, and the Egyptian collection.

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  • Wander through the halls and explore the thematic display of ancient sculptures.
  • Be mesmerized by the frescoes that adorn the ceilings and walls, each telling a story from a bygone era.
  • Don't miss the remarkable Loggia, where sculptures seem to converse with each other across the open space.
  • Take a moment to appreciate the stunning Aula Leonina, an enormous hall with a coffered ceiling and a collection of epigraphs and sculptures.
  • Enjoy the peaceful inner courtyard, a beautifully landscaped area with a fountain and antique statuary.

While you're there, let yourself be transported back to the Renaissance, when foundations of artistic and cultural legacies were being laid down by connoisseurs like Cardinal Altemps. It's an encounter with history and beauty that stays with you long after you've left its walls.

Frequently asked questions

What is the Palazzo Altemps and its historical significance?

The Palazzo Altemps is a historic building in Rome that was inaugurated as a museum in 1997. It houses a significant collection of Greek and Roman sculptures, including pieces that belong to the famous Ludovisi collection. The palace itself is part of the National Roman Museum and its history dates back to the 15th century when it was built by the Riario family.

What are the main attractions within the Palazzo Altemps?

Key attractions in Palazzo Altemps include the Ludovisi Battle Sarcophagus, the Boncompagni Ludovisi collection of ancient sculptures, the Egyptian collection, and the Renaissance frescoes that decorate the rooms of the palace.

How can visitors access Palazzo Altemps and what are its opening hours?

Palazzo Altemps can be accessed through the main entrance on Piazza Sant'Apollinare in Rome. It is typically open from Tuesdays to Sundays, and the opening hours are usually from 9 AM to 7:45 PM, but it's advisable to check the current schedule as times may vary or be affected by holidays and events.

Are there guided tours available at Palazzo Altemps?

Yes, guided tours are often available at Palazzo Altemps. These tours provide deeper insights into the history of the building and its artistic collections. Visitors can usually book these tours in advance through the National Roman Museum's official website or inquire at the ticket office upon arrival.

Is there an admission fee for Palazzo Altemps, and are there any discounts available?

There is typically an admission fee for Palazzo Altemps, which includes access to the entire National Roman Museum network. Discounts may be available for students, seniors, and groups. Children under a certain age and other eligible visitors may enjoy free admission. It's best to check the official website or contact the museum directly for the latest pricing and discount information.

Attractions Details

📌 Address

Piazza di Sant'Apollinare, 46, 00186 Roma RM, Italy

Opening Hours

9:30 AM - 7:00 PM

💸 Entrance Fee

EUR 2

Find it on google maps