Villa d’Este

The Cardinal’s Villa as a model for the European Courts

The Villa d’Este in Tivoli is one of the most representative examples of the late Italian Renaissance, commissioned by Cardinal Ippolito d’Este who, after being appointed governor of the city, commissioned the painter-archaeologist-architect Pirro Ligorio to design it in 1550. His “garden of wonders”, with its fountains and water features, became the model for the European courts of the 16th century.

The Palace

We will reconstruct the personality of the refined and cultured patron of artists and men of letters, in the sumptuous rooms of his palace: we will start from the upper floor with the most intimate rooms, the private chapel and the cardinal’s bedroom and move on to the rooms on the lower floor with the extraordinary decorations of the greatest exponents of Roman Mannerism where Ippolito organised his sumptuous banquets.

The gardens and fountains

We will then dive into the gardens where, among terraces and slopes, we will walk among the splendid scenic fountains, through grottoes, water games and nymphs, which also saw the intervention of the great Gianlorenzo Bernini and were the setting for shows and musical entertainment to enliven the visits of the cardinal’s illustrious guests.

Ippolito d’Este loved to show off the wonders of his residence and we have the honour of reliving them with charm and fascination.

Don’t Forget

The villa can be visited every day, but we remind you that on Saturdays and public holidays it is necessary to book.

  • Qualified guide
  • Full assistance
  • Personalised tour
  • Full admission: 12,00 euros per person
  • Reduced price admission: 2,00 Euro (EU citizens between 18 and 25 years old)
  • Free: children under 18 years old


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