At the 20, Princesa Street, you will discover a neoclassical house of more than 3.500 m2. It was built at the end of the 18th Century (between 1779 and 1783): the Liria Palace in Madrid.

The edifice is the current house of the Duchess of Alba and it is, as the Royal Palace is one of the only buildings of that time that preserve its ancient magnificence and that did not suffer a lot of modifications so that the neoclassic luxury atmosphere has been preserved despite the vicissitudes that occurred since 200 years.

turismo toda espana madrid  Liria Palace Madrid Museums Madrid

Liria Palace in Madrid. Picture by Carlos Octavio Uranga on flickr

Its location, in the centre of the city, makes it an ideal ideal place to rent apartments by days in Madrid. That, combines with the important artistic collection that the home of Alba has raised through the years, the Liria Palace of Madrid turned out to be most important private museum in the city.

Despite its particular character, it is possible to visit the Liria Palace because the Home of Alba foundation obeys a law that say that the home of the Duchess Cayetana de Alba can be visited for free during 4 days each months. So the official hours to visit the first floor of this mansion are on Fridays at: 10 a.m., 11 a.m. and midday. They receive groups of 16 people each hour but you need to book your place by phone (tel.:+34.915.475.302). Also, you need to consider the fact that in winter you can´t visit the house of Alba so as between June and October so that do not be surprised if you have to wait 2 years before being able to go there…

turismo toda espana madrid  Liria Palace Madrid Museums Madrid

Liria Palace in Madrid. Picture by laura padgett on flickr

But why does the Liria Palace in Madrid is so famous that everybody wants to visit it? Well, there is a library which counts with more than 30,000 volumes (including a copy of the bible translated into Spanish that dated from the 15th Century and some travel journals of Christopher Columbus) but also an art gallery of an inestimable value. Among the main pictorial pieces of arts that you can admire in the Casa de Alba, there is the Madonna of the Pomegranate (Fra Angelico), the last supper (Tiziano), Infanta Margarita Teresa in a Blue Dress (Velazquez)… There are also canvas of Picasso, Dali, Miró, Chagall and of course a portrait of the Duchess of Alba painted by Goya.

Even if you don´t succeed in visiting the palace on the next months, it still a good idea to rent a cheap apartment in Madrid and, at least, admire the Liria Palace from the outside.

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