On the corner of Alcalá street and the Prado Promenade in Madrid, Spain, stands the Cybele Palace, framed by the famous Cibeles Fountain, from which its name derives. This symbol of the city of Madrid, with a certain touch of cathedral, is within walking distance of other famous structures such as the Metropolis Building, the Prado Museum and the Arch or Gateway to Alcalá.
The Roman people enjoyed shows such as gladiatorial games (of the Etruscans), simulations of naval battles, hunting or fighting of wild animals (venations), car races and other events. The Roman amphitheater evolved from the two-sided Greek stadiums and semicircular theaters. It also represented an improvement over the Roman “Circus Maximus,” elliptically with a fixed central divider. The spine would impair the display of certain events. Continue reading “The Amphitheater of the Flavian Emperors”
One of the most flourishing and developing cities in ancient times was Florence. It was the center of medieval European commerce and finance. Birthplace of the Renaissance and the standard Italian language, home of Michelangelo’s “David”, the city of the Medicis, the “Ponte Vecchio” and the capital of Tuscany. The centerpiece of this historically valuable city is another treasure; the whole of the “Cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fiore”.
The San Juan Bautista Hospital was built on the outskirts of Toledo, Spain, between 1541 and 1603 by order of Cardinal Juan Pardo de Tavera and, therefore, the popular reference to the building as the Tavera Hospital. The building is also known as the Exterior Hospital as it was literally outside the city walls of Toledo.
Siena is one of the beautiful cities that we can find in Tuscany, a region of central Italy surrounded by the main mountain ranges, with fertile hills and plains. The city of Siena is known for its medieval center and for the “Palio”, a very famous horse race that they celebrate twice a year. Continue reading “The Metropolitan Cathedral of the Assumption of Santa Maria, Siena”
“Piazza Navona” in Rome, is located in an important center of urban life as it relates to social, cultural and tourism events. Strolling through this square one can find sculptures, fountains and buildings of great artistic value. Continue reading “Piazza Navona, Rome”
Upon leaving Venice, the city of Bologna is the obvious choice for another stop on our adventure through Italy. Bologna is the capital of the “Emilia-Romagna” region in northern Italy. It is also an important transport hub, in particular its Bologna Centrale station, which serves as a crossroads for all the main train systems in Italy. Continue reading “The two Towers: “Garisenda and degli Asinelli” – Bologna”
In northeastern Italy there are 118 islands in the Adriatic Sea, which together are known as Venice, the “Floating City”. As expected, Venice has its own “floating cathedral”, we are referring to the beautiful St. Mark’s Basilica. Continue reading “The floating cathedral of Italy”
Initially known as the Plaza Saint Salvador, the Plaza of the Villa was one of the main medieval centers of the Villa of Madrid. King Henry IV of Castile granted the title of “Noble and Loyal Vlla” to Madrid in the fifteenth century and, therefore, the change in the name of the square.
Villa d’Este is located in the town of Tivoli, Italy. In order to understand origen of the Villa d’Este, we must go back to the fourth century, when Christianity becomes the official religion of the Roman Empire. Once this happens, the bishops of Rome began to acquire a substantial amount of property around Rome (known as the Patrimony of St. Peter) and what is known as central Italy. This eventually evolved into the “Papal States” and included the regions of Lazio, Marche, Umbria and part of Emilia-Romagna. The Church’s control over these areas was unquestionable.