Palacio de Viana en Cordoba

Since we've visited this beautiful palace last sunday, I've been dreaming of it a lot. Well actually, I've been dreaming of Cordoba a lot. You know how much I love Granada and how much it inspires me but so special ! And even my Spanish friends agree about it. But let me present you this magical Palacio de Viana which was built in the XVIth century by the marques of Viana and belonged to the same family until the 1980s when the last descendant of the line Fausto Saavedro y Collado died leaving the palacio in the hands of his wife Sofia Amelia de Lancaster y Bleck. However, the marquess who didn't have any descendants didn't feel the need to inhabit such an enormous mansion neither could she afford it and decided to sell the place. As I was searching for some information on the history of the palacio, I bumped into this very interesting Spanish blog where I learned the very touching anecdote of Palacio de Viana. When the marquess decided to sell bit by bit all the valuable collections of paintings, tapestries, ceramics, pertaining to the palacio, and then the palace itself to foreign buyers, it didn't go unnoticed by a journalist who alerted various cultural associations and political parties in Cordoba. And so when a truck presented itself at the front of the gate of the palace, its driver and the assistants hired to take away pieces of furniture or objects found all accesses had been blocked by people living in the district, people who had worked in the palace and other people from Cordoba who knew the historical value of some of these collections. Of course, the marquess was in her own right to do so, after all it was her house but the people of Cordoba didn't see it that way. For them, the palacio and its art collection and valuable furniture had become a patrimony of Cordoba. So what was to do ? The people of Cordoba got more and more passionate about the affair and the mayor of the city eventually invoked a law regarding the protection of patrimony dating back from 1931. Moved by the people's reaction and feelings towards the palacio, the civil governor decided to enforce this law and ordered that nothing should be taken out of the palacio. But still, in her own right, the marquess wanted to sell and in the end, the local bank Caja Provincial de Ahorros de Cordoba (which is now Cajasur) acquired the palacio which opened its doors as a museum in 1981 and was further declared National Historical Monument. It is also known as the Museum of the Patios as it contains 13 patios which all communicate with each other. In spite of the map, we couldn't help losing ourselves in this delightful labyrinth of patios abundant with many varieties of flowers and trees. What can I say ? A long sigh would sum it all up....Only a visit of the patios was pure bliss. We were then taken by a guide to see the inside of the palacio. More bliss...We passed through austere dining rooms with white walls and dark Spanish furniture to bedrooms elegantly furnished with delicate wooden cabinets inlaid with mother of pearl and tortoise shell. We admired the library which comprises 7500 volumes. I fell in love with all the rooms furnished in the Louis XV style and Napoleon III. And more than anything, I was in total admiration in front of the tapestries. A few are from the Manufacture des Gobelins, others are Aubusson and some had been made at the Real Fabrica de Tapices after Goya's paintings. I touched a couple of them when the guide wasn't looking just for the pleasure of saying "oh...I'm touching history!". I know...a bit pathetic isn't it ? The guide told me off when I was tempting to photograph a precious volume of Gregorian chants. We were not allowed to take pictures inside but it was very difficult to resist so from time to time, I managed to do a quick clic clac. Enjoy the visit !

I kept this picture for the last one as it's quite late here - I've been busy all day and could never find the time to blog - and I wouldn't mind transporting myself on that bed right now!

Have a wonderful week end !!
Incredible but it's raining here....oh well...can't have sunshine all the time
Monchéri came with a crate of tomatoes this evening thinking we'll make gazpacho all weekend to fight the heat....I guess it will rather be bolognesa then !

pic #10 from here
pic #11 from here

Palacio de Viana
Calle de las Rejas de Don Gome, 2
14001 Córdoba,
+ 34 957 482 275

Adresses in Cordoba

We stayed at Hostal El Triunfo
Corregidor Luis de la Cerda 79
small rooms and a bit noisy at night but great situation in front of the Mezquita
120€/night - during high season otherwise prices start at 58€ for a double room -
there are lots of cheap pensions and great charming hotels but it was very difficult to find a place at last minute especially during the feria

Restaurants - bars

The great thing is that you can have a cheap lunch or dinner just ordering tapas. They're generally at 2€/piece.
You can also share a plate or racion.

La Boca
Paseo de la Ribeira 24
excellent food and wine and delicious homemade fig cheesecake !
and very good prices too (starting at 8€)

Casa El Rubio
C/puerta de Almodovar 5
it's recommended by Michelin but honestly we didn't find the food that special (starting at 16€ on the roof terrace)
but the roof terrace is great
otherwise, tapas are served in the street terrace

La Gula
Cruz de rastro 2
good food and very cheerful ambiance (fish plates at 10€)

Taberna San Miguel
Plaza de San Miguel
nice and cheap

Pepe de la Juderia
C/Romero 1
great tapas

La Amapola
Paseo de la Ribeira
great at night

Jazz Café
great place for drinks and listening to jazz/salsa


That palacio is beautiful!
In Poland it's raining too. All the May :/
Besitos :*
Linda Sue said…
INCREDIBLE- KA-BLOOEY- that was my head exploding from the beauty of this place!Thank you so much for making my day- your photos are (sigh) enviable- beauty just too big for my computer screen!
Don said…
Thanks for all the info. I would love to visit someday. So beautiful.
Theresa Cheek said…
Those interior walls are to die for!
Thank you for this!
Regina said…
I just followed.
So much beautifil things at this palace. I ought to note the address for my forthing trip to the area. Happy weekend. Rain can be very romantic;-)
Susana said…
What a great post Lala! Fantastic! Siempre he querido visitar Córdoba... ahora lo tengo un poco mal para viajar mucho con la barriga, además que tenemos que ir a Mallorca en Julio y posiblemente a UK en Agosto... y mi cuerpo ya no da para más viajes! Thanks for these beautiful pictures, Lala.
Sara said…
Thank you for the tour, Lala. I don't know if I will ever see Cordoba in person, but you've certainly given us a good look and lots of information.

I do love the way people fasten flower pots and even plates to the walls there in Spain. It is so decorative.
Elizabeth said…
Dear Lala,
How magical this place looks!
Have a beautiful weekend.
I was talking about Spain with my sister in law today maybe soon........!
Elisa, Croatia said…
I agree, pure Bliss, those patios. It was wonderful to read and learn that the people wanted to protect their palacio. Glad the city preserved this lovely home. Otherwise.....

sunny here but humid, I think rain is in the forecast for tomorrow.
bicocacolors said…
Que bonito reportaje!!!
What a great and in-depth post, thanks Lala. I really need to go back to that area and refresh all my childhood memories - and probably find a whole set of new ones on the way. Hope your weekend is good, it was sooo cold and rainy here yesterday that I had a hot curry for dinner ;-) Love from London, Carole x
Diana said…
So Beautiful! I love the bit of blue peaking from behind the orange tree!
Peggy said…
Thank you for sharing your trip so completely - wonderful pictures and great commentary... even info on hotels, restaurants and the like - I sure would like to visit. I am taking note - hoping to visit Spain in 2012 to do the Camino and then spend a few weeks sight seeing.
Vitania said…
Fabulous post Lala.. and thanks for all that history. What a beautiful space. It's a shame but many of the great castles of Europe ended up the same way, too large and too expensive to maintain.

happy weekend
Kristin said…
Thanks for sharing this beautiful palace with us! I am so impressed with the garden! So beautiful! Wishing you a great week!

Kristin xo
studioJudith said…
I, too, love Cordoba .. .
but haven't been to this Palace.
Just glorious.

Hope your blue skies are back.

I'd love to wander around here with candlelight and a glass of sherry de Jerez. Don't apologize for touching - I will now admit that I touched the robe Clark Gable wore in 'Gone With the Wind' when it was on exhibit. We're passionate - what can I say, right?
Catherine xx

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