Italian president's official residence in Rome open to public five days a week.
Italy's presidential palace in Rome - the 16th-century Palazzo del Quirinale - is open for guided tours in Italian on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from 09.30-16.00.
There is a choice of two guided tours, both of which must be booked in advance: the first tour is free (apart from a €1.50 booking fee), lasts an hour and 20 minutes, and is dedicated to the reception rooms and principal features of the piano nobile. This includes the Hall of Mirrors, the Ballroom and the Hall of Tapestries, as well as rooms devoted to the palace's former residents: popes, kings and presidents.
The second itinerary is longer – two and half hours – costs €10. It also includes the piano nobile but with the addition of the palace's vasella porcelain collection, its gardens, and the museum of carriages, which were in use until 1939. This tour is free for children under 18, school children and their teachers, as well as university students of arts, archaeology and history. It is also free for disabled visitors and their carers, while for there is a reduced rate of €5 for visitors aged between 18 and 25, and those over 65.
Reservation is mandatory and may be made online, via the call centre tel. 0639967557, or at the info point on Salita di Montecavallo 15, at least five days prior to the tour. Tours are organised for a maximum of 30 people and depart every 20 minutes.
Over the centuries the 1,200-room palace has been home to 30 popes, four kings of Italy and, since the 1940s, 12 presidents of the Italian republic.
Situated on the summit of Rome’s Quirinal hill, the building is a third again the size of London’s Buckingham Palace and 20 times the size of Washington’s White House.
The palace's annual running costs amount to almost €230 million, and it employs a workforce of 1,720.
For full information see Quirinal Palace website.