Rome's Senate buildings at Palazzo Madama are open to the public on Saturday 7 September from 10.00-18.00.
Senate staff conduct free guided tours every 20 minutes, for groups of about 40 people, with each visit lasting about three quarters of an hour. The visit begins with the screening of a film on the senate's history and its rich artistic heritage, which includes frescoes, tapestries, stucco and cabinets visibile in its many grand rooms.
Tckets cannot be booked in advance and must be collected on the day, from 08.30. Each visitor may request, subject to availability, a maximum of four tickets (if adult, but just one if a minor), choosing any time between 10.00 and 18.00 with intervals of 20 minutes.
Situated on Corso Rinascimento near Piazza Navona, the historic palace was built over the ancient baths of Nero, and was completed in 1505 as a Rome base for the Florentine Medici family. The building was named in honour of Madama Margherita of Austria, the wife of Alessandro de' Medici. When her husband was murdered, the 15-year old Madama Margherita married the 14-year old Ottavio Farnese, grandson of Pope Paul III.
Over the centuries the building has passed through various hands, from the House of Lorraine to the Vatican, and in the 16th century Caravaggio lived there briefly, but since 1871 it has been the seat of the Italian senate. To book tickets and for more information tel. 0667062430, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.