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Our building


Our building

Palazzo Borromeo

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Palazzo Borromeo is an architectural expression of the Italian Renaissance and has been hosting the Embassy of Italy to the Holy See since 1929.

It was built during the XVI century by Pope Pius IV (Gian Angelo Medici), who pursued and promoted an extraordinary urban renovation.

The building is located on Via Flaminia, at about 5 minutes from "Piazza del Popolo"  and next to the fountain in honour of Pope Julius III.

This fountain was built by Bartolomeo Ammannati and became later part of Palazzo Borromeo. The building was commissioned by Pius IV to architect Pirro Ligorio. It is unique thanks to its stylistic and architectural peculiarities. Pirro Ligorio was able to harmonize Palazzo Borromeo with the pre-existing fountain, with the result of an unconventional masterpiece.amb italiana s. sede 65

The building was named after Carlo Borromeo, nephew of Pius IV. Carlo and his brother Federico received it as a present. Federico Borromeo was the Captain of the Holy Roman Church but died at the age of 27. After his death, Carlo remained the only owner of the building. 

The death of his brother marked an important change in Carlo's life: he decided to dedicate all his life to the Church. He was appointed Cardinal and Arcibishop of Milan by Pius IV and worked as personal secretary of the Pope, a role considered as the the ancestor of the current Secretary of State.

scalone con opere ceroliHe played a determinant role in the Council of Trento and striclty enforced the principles derived from the Coucil in the 20 years during which he was the Head of the Church of Milan.

Carlo Borromeo was beatified in 1602 and sanctified in 1610 by Pope Paul V, following the request of Federico Borormeo who was, at that time, Archibishop of Milan (and also appeared in Alessandro Manzoni famous novel, "I Promessi Sposi").

In 1566 Cardinal Carlo Borromeo offered Palazzo Borromeo to his sister Anna, who got married to Fabrizio Colonna. The Colonna family has owned the palace for three centuries, unitl 1900 when it was sold to Sir Giuseppe Balestra.salonearazzi

The Balestra family sold the palace to a famous antiquarian, Ugo Jandolo, who renovated the entire building.

67785 f amb61salabandiereIn 1929, after the Lateran treaty, the very first Ambassador of Italy to the Holy See, Cesare Maria Vecchi, suggested to buy the villa to transform it into the Embassy of Italy to the Holy See.

Italy bought the building and it has been its owner since 1929.

Today, Palazzo Borromeo hosts many cultural and political events, such as the annual commemoration of the Lateran Treaty.




Useful References:

- La fontana pubblica di Giulio III e il palazzo di Pio IV sulla via Flaminia; Giacomo Balestra.

Roma, Tip. Capitolina D. Battarelli, 1911.

Biblioteca Statale Del Monumento Di Santa Scolastica ART.B 323, Inventario 0000098507 v. A

- La più bella Ambasciata; Pasquale Diana.

Napoli, L'arte tipografica, 1969.

Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale Roma, Collocazione DUP E.737, Inventario 002401211/1v.A

- Il Palazzo di Pio IV sulla via Flaminia; a cura di Ugo Iandolo, testo di Sante Bargellini, Milano.

Roma, Casa editrice d'arte Bestetti e Tumminelli, 1923.

Biblioteca di Archeologia e Storia dell'Arte; Collocazione DONO BELLI B 431, Inventario 000235665 / 1 v.C.

- L'Ambasciata d'Italia presso la Santa Sede: Palazzo Borromeo, ovvero la Palazzina di Pio IV sulla via Flaminia; a cura di Daria Borghese.

Torino, editore Allemandi, 2008.

Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale Roma, Collocazione 18. C.1185, Inventario 004103488, info B.

- Palazzo Borromeo - L’Ambasciata d’Italia presso la Santa Sede; a cura di Pietro Sebastiani e Daria Borghese Torino, editore Allemandi, 2019.