- The embassies of the Turin capital city
- Places of Cinema
- Among the heros of the Risorgimento
- Magic places of the city
- Night walk in lights of Turin
- Medieval Turin behind Porta Palazzo
- Power centres of Turin
- Along the Po
- Through the set of "Elisa di Rivombrosa"
- Places of contemporary Art
- Through the Churches of the old part of the city
- Olympic Turin
The embassies of Turin capital city
Before being the capital city of the Sardinian Reign and then being the capital city of the Italian Reign, Turin gave hospitality to embassies' offices of many European and non-European Countries. When the capital city was transfered to Florence, the palaces that gave hospitality to embassies remained to the city; these palaces are all tasteful and austere, in the typical architectural style of Turin, situated between corso Vittorio Emanuele and piazza Castello, in the area immediately adjacent to the symbol of power of the old capital city.
Our itinerary through old embassies started from Piazza Carlo Felice 10, in front of the railroad station of Porta Nuova. Here, in a building, carried out following the projects of the architect Carlo Promis for the square of the station, there was the embassy of Prussia; the building is keeping the requirements of the uniform architecture, that characterized the growth of Contrada Nuova for centuries, whose axis was the current Via Roma.
We continue towards the Po, on the corso Vittorio Emanuele, and along roads we will encounter other embassies.
First of all, in Via Rattazzi 7/9, there is the Peruvian embassy, that really today is recognizable only knowing the address: in fact the palace was renovated many times and it is notable only because it is the first, on the corso Vittorio Emanuele, that stops the uniform architecture, characteristic of this area that is the old centre of Turin.
In Via San Francesco di Paola 37 we find the embassy of Sweden and Norway: it was a building clearly in neoclassic style and it was appointed to the rent, it was carried out in a very tricky period, when the Savoia family returned, after the adventure of Napoleone Bonaparte.
Also the embassy of Porta Ottomana, current Turkey, is situated in a building, appointed to the rent, that is in Via Accademia Albertina 40: it's a palace in neoclassic style, with three floors and with an axis of central symmetry.
Now, in Via San Massimo 53, we encounter the embassy of Netherlands, that stood out for the refined architecture of the palace, carried out between 1840's and 1850's and characterized by a large eight-angle hall, with decorations in plaster and a marble fountain in neorenaissance style.
We are nearly along the Po by now, but in Via Mazzini 43 we stop again in front of the office of the Belgian embassy: the building, at court, shows the influences of French style, a courtyard and a garden in front of the principal front; the architectural decorations are neoclassic.
If you come back towards Via Accademia Albertina, in Via Provana 7, you can encounter the old office of the embassy of Spain, situated in a building appointed to the rent for the upper middle class: elegance is sober and it respects the principles of symmetry that are typical of the nineteenth century.
If you go on through Via Mazzini and if you walk over Piazza Carlo Felice, you stop in corso Matteotti 13 and you can observe the embassy of Brazil: it's placed in one of the most beautiful buildings by rent of the second half of the nineteenth century, it was designed by Alessandro Antonelli (the architect of the Mole) and it intensifies the presence of a grid of pillars and columns that inside bear ribbed vaults in brick, conforming to the theories of the Ecole Polythecnique.
Behind corso Matteotti, in Via Gioia 4, there is the embassy of the United States.
You come back towards Piazza Carlo Felice and you turn to the Duomo; in Via XX Settembre 48 there is the building that gave hospitality to the embassy of Portugal and that today is totally renovated. In fact the embassy is situated in a palace of the old aristocracy of the court, that had done a tender to make sure to maintain the plots of the nascent Contrada Nuova, that had competed to show their richness inside of those fronts; the absolute power of sovereigns wanted that they were uniform.
If you go on Via XX Settembre you cross, after a few steps, Via Santa Teresa. Here there are the embassies' offices of Great Britain and of the Vatican (at the street corner with Via San Francesco d'Assisi).
The building, that gave hospitality to the British embassy in Via Santa Teresa, is been demolished during the fascist reconstruction of Via Roma. Today only the place is recognizable; the place had a strategic importance: in fact the block was the outermost edge of the Roman Turin before the enlargement of the Contrada Nuova and it overlooks the wonderful square San Carlo, one of the most beautiful European squares, dates back to the Sabauda dynasty.
At the street corner of Via Maria Vittoria and of Via San Francesco d'Assisi there is the Vatican embassy of the Savoia (even if after 1863 the relationships between Italy and the Holy See broke off). Today also of this diplomatic seat is recognizable only the place: at the end of the nineteenth century for hygienic-sanitary reasons many buildings of the old town centre were demolished and Via Pietro Micca was carried out, that was a "diagonal" wound of the perfect roman chessboard.
In Via Maria Vittoria 4, that is the continuation of Via Santa Teresa after the square San Carlo, you can encounter the refined palace Asinari of San Marzano, which is one of the most beautiful in Turin, that in the nineteenth century gave hospitality also to the embassy of France.
There was the embassy of Russia more distant and definitely out of the area chosen by the other Countries for their diplomatic delegations, in Via Stampatori 4; the embassy, situated in the beautiful palace Scaglia of Verrua, is characterized by two wonderful courtyards that today have lost a part of their original mark because of many reorganizations.
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Places of Cinema
Turin was the first capital of Italian cinema: here the first production-companies were born, here the first stars of the nascent local cinematography were created, here the first colossal were shot ( for example, here in 1914 Cabiria was shot, one of the first important worldwide productions). After the first World War Turin had lost its preeminence in favour of Rome and of Cinecittà, but the privileged tie with cinema didn't ever die down and Turin continues to offer its different facets in many productions.
An itinerary through places of cinema must start from the Mole Antonelliana, that since some years gives hospitality to the Museo Nazionale of Cinema, one of the most important of Europe with his precious collection of so-called pre-cinema and his archives.
If you leave the Mole Antonelliana, you can catch up with Via Po, that was the setting of many films, from "Le amiche" by Michelangelo Antonioni, to the more recent "Portami Via" and "Un amore" by Gian Luca Tavarelli to "Preferisco il rumore del mare" by Mimmo Calopresti and "Così ridevano" by Gianni Amelio. If you get to the end of Via Po, you arrive at the river, an indispensable location of many torinese productions. It's exactly along the Po that every author illustrates his image of Turin, offering thousands of interpretations of a city never identical to itself. Between the Murazzi and the hill, the dressmakers of "Le amiche", a film that in 1955 Michelangelo Antonioni based on the Cesare Pavese's book with the same title, move along the Po; you can find on the river-banks the improbable bathing establishment of "Ogni lasciata è persa", film by Piero Chiambretti that invents a surreal charming Turin; and around the refined corso Cairoli some of the characters of "La donna della domenica" by Luigi Comencini are moved; and there is still the Po, in particular Piazza Vittorio Veneto, in "Preferisco il rumore del mare".
If you cross the bridge and you catch up with the church "Gran Madre di Dio", you can immerse yourself in sceneries that Dario Argento loves; they describe a worrying Turin; maybe they will be myths of the magic city that return, that never are uneasy in the cinema that play with tension and anxieties of audience. Behind the Gran Madre di Dio, in Via Molino Colombini, there is the trapezium building of "Non ho sonno"; more up, in Corso Giovanni Lanza 57, there is Scott, famous for the film "Profondo Rosso". And exactly this film by Dario Argento has one part of his worrying fascination for the hill, for quiet streets behind the Gran Madre and for the decadent of the Regina. "Gran Madre di Dio" is also in the film "The italian job" by Peter Collison, with Michael Caine, Raf Vallone and Rossano Brazzi; the setting of a memorable robbery is a chaotic and contemporaneous Turin.
If you leave the hill, you can come back along Via Po towards the town centre, that is the theatre of many productions. On the right, there is the courtyard of the University Palace where some scenes of the film "Un amore" by Gianluca Tavarelli are set; this film is a story of a young love of the 80s.
Beginning from piazza Castello the itineraries of cinema become numerous. You can go in Via Roma, towards the Galleria San Federico, following Kim Rossi Stuart, Michele Placido and Claudio Amendola in "Carabinieri", and you can still go on in Via Roma and arrive at Porta Nuova, remembered the passing of Enrico Lo Verso in "Così ridevano". Still in Via Roma, in piazzetta CLN (a space of few square metres sticked between Via Roma and piazza San Carlo, dedicated to the Committee for National Liberation) we can admire the two big marble fountains that represent the Po and the Dora, immortalized in some scenes of the film "Profondo Rosso". In Via Roma and in piazza Castello there were also Eleonora Rossi Drago and Valentina Cortese, that are protagonists of the film "Le Amiche" before cited. The restaurant "Del Cambio" and the "Caffe Baratti" appeared in two recent productions, "Così ridevano" and "Preferisco il rumore del mare".
From piazza Castello, if you get to the end of Via Pietro Micca you arrive in Via Cernaia, that is the scenery of the film "I compagni", shot by Mario Monicelli in 1963 and performed by Marcello Mastroianni, Annie Girardot and Renato Salvatori; the street is closed from the Station of Porta Susa, that is also in the film. Besides there is piazza Castello, sheer crossroads of people and cinema. Palazzo Reale was used for love stories and aristocratic worries, from the film "La puttana del re" by Axel Conti, that talked about the unrequited love of Vittorio Amedeo II (Timothy Dalton) for the beautiful countess Jeanne de Verue (Valeria Golino), to the film "Ferdinando e Carolina" by Lina Wertmuller, that talks about the neapolitan story of the bourbon sovereigns. The film "La puttana del re" was shot also in some of the most beautiful Savoy residences near Turin, in particular in the luxurious Palace of hunting of Stupinigi.
There are other torinese baroque settings for love stories and aristocratic unhappiness: there is the beautiful Natasha, the refined prince Andrea and the silent Pierre, characters of "War and Peace" that love and chase each other in/to Russia because of the napoleonic invasion, rebuilt between the Castello del Valentino, the Palace of Stupinigi and the torinese country; this film is the hollywood "War and Peace" by King Vidor, with Audrey Hepburn, Mel Ferrer and Henry Fonda.
From an aristocratic and worrying Turin of the sabauda court and of its stories, we come to a bourgeois and well-off Turin, represented in "La donna della domenica", maybe the most beautiful film that narrates the subalpine capital. Borgo Dora is the privileged setting of this film that, performed by Jacqueline Bisset and Marcello Mastroianni and based on the Fruttero's and Lucentini's novel with the same title, narrates the inquiries about the murder of an architect. Borgo Dora and his Balon, but also the elegant streets along the Po and corso Vittorio Emanuele, gave hospitality to the scenes of this very charming thriller. Besides some scenes of "Così ridevano" were shot in Borgo Dora and in the adjacent Porta Palazzo.
If you leave the town centre and you move towards the south of the city, following the Po, you can encounter the Castello del Valentino of "War and Peace", that we have mentioned earlier (here the meeting between Napoleon and the zar Alexander was shot); some scenes of "Mimi metallurgico"(with Giancarlo Giannini that performed a south worker and Mariangela Melato that played a northern girl), were shot in the Parco del Valentino; in corso Massimo d'Azeglio, that skirts the Parco del Valentino, at the corner with Via Campana, there is the abandoned, shot by Dario Argento in the film "Non ho sonno". Forward some kilometres, in corso Unità d'Italia, there is the BIT and Italia '61, that are recognizable in the film "La seconda vita", in which Nanni Moretti has a confrontation with the years of terrorism and with the young ex-terrorist Valeria Bruni Tedeschi; the old town centre, the tram, the parks are the setting of this hard and dramatic event, the first real Italian film that, without being rhetoric and without forgetting responsibilities and rights, settles scores with a recent past in which Turin has been a victim that was never tamed.
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Among the heros of the Risorgimento
In the Risorgimento period Turin, that was the driving-force of the Italian Unity, was obliged to receive exiles and patriots that came from everywhere of the Peninsula. Many traces of this period are in Turin: from palaces of the power to the statues that nowadays commemorate the men that fought for the unity of our Country. In this page we suggest you an itinerary that is rather long and comes untied between the river and the town centre, in search of statues that commemorate the heros of the Risorgimento heroic deeds.
The journey can start in Vittorio Emanuele II, at the crossing between corso Vittorio Emanuele and corso Galileo Ferraris. The high column, on which the statue rises, is also seen from a distance and it celebrates the king Vittorio Emanuele II, that wanted the unity of our Country and was able to construct it, surrounding himself of illuminated politicians and mediating among many souls that aspired to unity. This monument was wanted by the king Umberto I, son of Vittorio Emanuele, and it was carried out by the sculptor Pietro Costa. On the 9th of September, 1899, the monument's unveiling was an authentic popular party: via Roma and corso Vittorio Emanuele were illuminated at a party and in the whole town there were signs dedicated to the king of the Italian Unity. If you go back up corso Galileo Ferraris, you can turn on the right, in via Cernaia and go into the town centre.
In Via Cernaia, on the left, there are the "Giardini La Marmora", commanded by the beautiful statue that is dedicated to the general Alessandro Ferrero della Marmora, the founder of the Bersaglieri. This monument was unveiled in 1867 and on the base it reproduces two bas-reliefs in memory of the battle of Goito during the first World War and in memory of the expedition in Crimea that Cavour wanted to conclude alliances with the great powers of that period and in which the general La Marmora died, killed by cholera.
A bit further on, in piazza Solferino, there is the monument dedicated to the duke of Genoa, Fernando di Savoia, dead a lingering death when he was only 33 and dear to Turin, he is still portrayed on a horse, dying because of a shot; Fernando di Savoia stood out for the conduct of Peschiera's siege during the Independence War I. From piazza Solferino you can go in Via S. Teresa, then in Via Roma and so you arrive in Via Principe Amedeo.
On the left you run into piazza Carignano, where there is the monumental baroque facade of the palace with the same name, one of the most important places of the Italian Risorgimento: in fact Vittorio Emanuele was born here, for the first time the Italian Parliament gathered and today this palace is the seat of the National Museum of the Risorgimento, that is the unique national museum of this kind. On the opposite side, near the Teatro Carignano, there is the restaurant of Cambio, one of the most prestigious and old restaurants of Turin, frequented by the intellectuals and by Camillo Benso di Cavour in the 19th century.
If you leave piazza Carignano and you go on along Via Principe Amedeo, on the left you reach piazza Carlo Alberto: besides the neoclassic facade of Palazzo Carignano and the present Biblioteca Nazionale (that is in the ex-stables of this Palace), we can observe the monument dedicated to Carlo Alberto, the controversial king of Sardinia's Reign that started the process for the Unity between doubts and bad luck. The king is riding and on the pedestal there are four bas-reliefs that portraied the battles of Goito and the abdication and the exile of Santa Lucia at Oporto, in Portugal. The monument, carried out by Carlo Marocchetti (who is also sculptor of the statue of Emanuele Filiberto in piazza S. Carlo), was placed in piazza Carlo Alberto for following a definite town planning scheme, that wanted to rebuild an ideal way of the city through places that reminded of the role of Turin capital and the fidelity of the city to the Savoia's family.
Now you leave this square, go in Via Carlo Alberto, having behind Via principe Amedeo, and then you turn on the left, in Via Maria Vittoria that arrives in piazza Carlo Emanuele II, informally called "piazza Carlina" by the Torinese. In the middle of this square there is the monument dedicated to Camillo Benso conte di Cavour, that was the political maker of the Italian Unity. The Prime Minister of Vittorio Emanuele II is portrayed while he is lifting a girl that symbolizes Italy.
If you return in Via Maria Vittoria, you can go on to the Po, where, on the left, in corso Cairoli there is the monument dedicated to Giuseppe Garibaldi. The tribute to the "Hero of the Two Worlds" is placed in one of the most fascinating corners of the city, immersed in a mild scenery between the Po and the hill; it was unveiled on the 6th of November, 1887, in an important atmosphere of conciliation between the two Risorgimento souls of that period. Giuseppe Garibaldi is one of the Risorgimento heros more dear to Turin. During the years many tributes were dedicated to him: in 1883 Via Dora Grossa was called with his name and today it is one of the biggest city-shopping street; today at number 22 of the same street there is an inscription that remembers us it was here that the hero decided the "spedizione dei Mille".
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Magic places of the city
The place where Turin rises and its orientation is not chosen by chance; the first settling was influenced by magic-religious factors. Turin has a Roman plan, with the route that opened the four access doors on the four cardinal points, while the main street following the ascending line of the sun. The esoteric tradition considers Turin as one of the three vertices of the triangle of the white magic, together with Prague and Lione, but also as the top of another triangle, that is the black magic, that includes London and San Francisco. We can't forget that Turin is built on the 45° parallel, indicated by the obelisk that at the top has the astrolabe, situated in piazza Statuto (there is one identical at 11 kilometres away at the end of corso Francia). Turin rises at the confluence of two rivers, the Po and the Dora, that create a link of water around the town. The Po symbolizes the Sun, and therefore the masculine side, the Dora is the Moon and the feminine side.
It's exactly from piazza Statuto, near the station of Porta Susa, that our journey in the magic mysteries of Turin starts. This district symbolizes the "black heart" of the city for two reasons: first of all, because it is placed at west and therefore, in the Roman's opinion, it is in an inauspicious position for the sunset, that is frontier betweeen Good and Evil; secondly because here there was the "vallis occisorum" (for this reason the present district Valdocco is called with this name) that was a place of killing and tomb. The necropolis can be wide and it can extend under Corso Francia, Corso Principe Eugenio, Via Cibrario and Via San Donato, streets that radiate off from the square. The gallows stayed in piazza Statuto for ages, then the French moved it where today there is the crossing between corso Regina Margherita and Via Cigna, nicknamed "il rondo della forca". There is a coincidence because from the central flowerbed of piazza Statuto people can go into the control room of the whole system of the city black sewer and the legend narrates that, exactly there, the so-called Gate of Hell is placed.
From piazza Statuto you go in Via Garibaldi up to the crossing with Via degli Stampatori and, after one block, you arrive in Via Barbaroux; it is narrated that here, under the chiesa della Misericordia, there are many corpses of people that were executed.
From there you can arrive at vicolo Santa Maria, another place tied to the sacredness. In the church of Santa Maria di Piazza there is a painting of Virgin Mary. His peculiarity is that probably it was painted by San Luca, given that the pictorial technique is like the style of that pompeiana: otherwise it would be the unique painting of Virgin Mary.
In a near palace, of which we don't know the right location for secrecy reasons, it is said that there is the Veil of Virgin Mary, a simple black cloth like it was used in that period.
If you get to the opposite side of Via Stampatori and Via Sant'Agostino, you can arrive in Via Bonelli, a narrow street, where is hard to see the sun and where the executioner of Turin lived; he was always dressed in black and went all over the region, taking "the tools of the trade" inside a bag. After renovations it is impossible to recognize the right building, but a strange feeling of restlessness remains.
From Via Bonelli you can go in Via Bellezia, that after Via Garibaldi becomes Via Botero; at the end of this street there is piazza Solferino. On the side of the tree-lined flowerbed there is Fontana Angelica, a magic and mysterious place full of allegorical senses; it would symbolize the Gate towards the Infinite.
If you go in Via San Tommaso you can arrive at the little square of Corpus Domini, seat of the church with the same name, where there is still the chalice, protagonist of the most famous miracle happened in Turin. The tradition narrates that a thief stole the monstrance from the church of Exilles; the chalice fell of the bag where it was been hidden and it soared until the bishop asked it to get down. Inside the church there is a plaque that remembers this event.
It is very short the distance from this little square to piazza Castello. Here we are in the centre of Turin, its "white heart", that the scholars of this subject place localize between the piazzetta Reale and the gardens, in particular around the fountain of Tritoni. This place is considered in this way also because we can't forget that in the neighbourhood precious relics are being held; among these the most important one is the Holy Shround, that is contained in the Duomo. An esoteric explained that it "holds in itself the four elements that compose the Universe: Ground, Fire, Air and Water. It was born from the Earth like a linen flower, it was woven by man and it travelled through the Water, through the Air, that are the time, while the Fire is Christ and the light, the knowledge...no fire can destroy it, because the fire is already in itself. Many times the fire skimmed it, but the Shround was always winning".
In the district of piazza Castello the experts recognize other two reasons that increase the magic of Turin: the presence of the Egyptian Museum and of the Grotte Alchemiche underneath Palazzo Madama, where the Savoia's family would watch over who produced gold and that was a destination of famous magicians and alchemists in the past. In the square the absolute magic point of the city is indicated: it is the railing of Palazzo Reale, in the space between the two equestrian statues of the Dioscuri, Castore and Polluce, that some people consider like the division between sacred Turin and diabolic Turin.
From piazza Castello you can go in Via Po and arrive in piazza Vittorio. If you cross the ponte Vittorio Emanuele I on the river Po, you arrive in the church of "Gran Madre di Dio", the esoteric tradition believes that the Holy Grail is buried under this church. The two groups of statues in front of the entrance hide a meaning reserved to few people; many people tried to interpret this meaning many times and in many ways and some link it to the prophecies of Nostradamus. This person lived in Turin for many years, in a place that moves from our itinerary and if we want to go there we must return in piazza Statuto. From here you must go in Via Cibrario up to corso Svizzera; on the left you must turn into Via Michele Lessona where, at the beginning, there was Domus Morozzo, that was the residence of Nostradamus for all the period that he stayed in Turin. It was demolished some years ago and today nothing of this residence is remained; now on the site there is a park.
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Night walk in lights of Turin
With this itinerary we want to offer you a different and unusual way to walk around Turin. First of all, we must wait for the daylight descends and the night switches all the system of public lighting. Since some years the facet of Turin after the sunset has changed: in fact, the city does not only provide illumination of the urban streets, but also enhancement of some monumental buildings and revaluation of many parts of the city, by a plan of architectural and environmental lighting.
Our walk starts from the Mole Antonelliana, object of one of the most important projects and rediscovered in all its uprightness, by the lights that are measured out and orientated in a wise way. The extreme clearness of the structure returns an effect of a cut out image, that is perfectly circumscribed in the contours, nearly metaphysical in her rigour: the alternation between grey and white, between light and shade, enriches the charm of the Mole, that more stately stands out against the sky.
From the Mole the field of observation moves to the church of Monte dei Cappuccini, the chapel of Carlo Emanuele I, where practically the light divides the work of the architect Vitozzi in two parts. The upper part is floodlighted and it comes off, emerging with elegance, from the zone below, hardly lighted up by the bundle of light that creates surprising chiaroscuro effects.
Moreover, on the hill, there is the Parco della Rimembranza, instituted in 1925 in memory of the fallen of the World War I. In his higher point there is the headlight of the Vittoria Alata, that is 20 metres high and it is enhanced by a new and careful lighting that produces a not excessive light, though it's possible to see the statue during the night, creating a kind of "soft" lighting in order to avoid effects of light pollution. Instead the lighting of the garden is measured out so as to promote the night view on the landscape of the city.
From piazza Vittorio, concerned with new plans of lighting too, you can go into the arcades of Via Po that lead to piazza Castello, that is the real heart of the city also for the lights. The arcades, a big heritage and city peculiarity that have requested many interventions to improve the visibility , move toward Via Roma up to piazza Carlo Felice, and then along corso Vittorio up to the monument dedicated to Vittorio Emanuele II, sculptured by Pietro Costa. This work of art is illuminated by progressive lights from down upwards, promoting the play of the shades, of the cavity that escape from the light, of the upward development of the columns that see the sabaudo king almost walking on the roofs of the city.
If you go along Via Garibaldi, you can see the municipal building that overlooks piazza Palazzo di Città, in the middle of a series of interventions that turned it into a pedestrian precinct and that are presenting a new luminosity to its arcades.
This walk is made possible by the new plan of public lighting of the AEM, the company that deals with exercise, maintenance, planning and production of the new wiring. The plan concerned also many churches, among which Maria Ausiliatrice, that has in front the monument dedicated to San Giovanni Bosco, sculptured by Geatano Cellini. Here the play of the lights brightens up some characters, while the others live in the dim light, emphasizing most the feeling of pain and mercy and the way of humanity.
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Medieval Turin behind Porta Palazzo
There are only a few signs of the medieval history of Turin, but you can find them if you walk along streets that are between the Duomo and the area of piazza della Repubblica, in a popular street called Porta Palazzo.
Our itinerary starts from piazza del Duomo, from which you can go to Via Quattro Marzo, built in the 19th century in order to break the orthogonal plant of the old roman and medieval city. Along this street you can overlook many buildings, they keep gothic and medieval windows; then you arrive in a tree-lined little square that is the oldest zone of the city: from here many streets with names of trade start. One of these streets (Via Porta Palatina, that in the past was called Via dei Cappellai) leads to the Chiesa dello Spirito Santo, that belongs to a Confraternity born in the 16th century and in which Jean-Jacques Rousseau was converted to Roman Catholicism; this philosopher lived in the same street, at number 11. If you go on, you arrive in piazza del Corpus Domini, commanded by the church with the same name, then you can go to Via Palazzo di Città and you arrive in the square with the same name, in which there is the Palazzo Civico.
The 18th-century Palazzo di Città is placed in the heart of the medieval Turin. In fact on the left, gone over Via Garibadi and turned in Via dei Mercanti, you can go to the Contrada dei Guardinfanti, maze of recently restored lanes, quiet gardens, old palaces, busy shops and medieval foreshortenings. If you can get lost without a destination, in search of sudden apparitions, of surprising prospects and of old craft shops, you can appreciate this corner of the old Turin.
On the right of Palazzo di Città you can go in Via Milano and you can arrive at the gothic church of San Domenico. It was built in the 13th century and time after time restored; today the church keeps signs of its medieval past through the terracotta floor and the decorations. If you go on along Via Milano, you can admire some buildings that are decorated with animals (dogs at number 11, bulls at number 13 and lions at number 18). Shortly before piazza della Repubblica the street opens in a little square with an irregular shape, carried out when the street was regularized to keep the facade of the church of San Maurizio and Lazzaro, with a beautiful ellipsoid dome. Via Milano and the adjacent streets offer charming prospects toward the oldest Turin.
From piazza della Repubblica you can return to the medieval Turin crossing piazza Emanuele Filiberto. If you go over the square, in the maze of the lanes that are behind Porta Palazzo, you can go into the roman quadrilateral of the old Augusta Taurinorum. Careful and recent repaired have given to this zone a new vitality. Beside memorable clubs, that have seen the history of the area, there are new restaurants and cafés that often offer new maghrebian and oriental atmospheres: a mint tea in the medieval Turin is surprisingly charming.
The executioner lived in Via Bonelli, near piazza Emanuele Filiberto; if you go on along Via Sant'Agostino and Via Santa Chiara (on which restaurants and little clubs overlook and liven up the nightlife of this zone), you can arrive at vicolo della Consolata, that finishes in piazza della Consolata. The church with the same name is one of the dearest to the Torinese and, though it was restructured during the centuries (also Guarini and Juvarra have worked here), it keeps the old romanesque bell tower of the church of S. Andrea, on which ruins it stands. On the northwest side of the church there is the base of one of the five angular towers of the roman city. One of the most famous torinese clubs overlooks the square: the well-known Al Bicerin, also this club was loved by Camillo Benso Conte di Cavour and in which it's required to taste the drink with the same name.
If you go on along Via della Consolata, you arrive in piazza Savoia; there is an obelisk in the middle that reminds of the Siccardi laws that abolished the Ecclesiastical Court. Near this square there are some of the most beautiful patrician torinese buildings. In Via delle Orfane at number 7 (the back side overlooks the square) there is Palazzo Barolo that today is the seat of prestigious exhibitions and of the Opera Pia, wanted by the marquises Tancredi and Giulia of Barolo; in this palace Silvio Pellico died. In Via della Consolata at number 11, before Via Garibaldi, there is Palazzo Paesana di Saluzzo, that has one of the most beautiful torinese courtyards. If you return in Via del Carmine, some block after the church there are the military areas that in the past were the monumental entrance in Turin from the Val di Susa, after the third city enlargement. The plan of the gate was not carried out.
If you go on along corso Valdocco, on the left, you can turn on the left, toward Via Garibaldi and that is the longest pedestrian city street. In the past it was called Via Dora Grossa and today it is one of the streets of the torinese shopping, with elegant boutique and fine cafe, especially in summer. Its view is closed toward east from the Juvarra's facade of Palazzo Madama and toward west from the wonderful Alps that close piazza Statuto.
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Power centres of Turin
The main palaces of the city power overlook the central Piazza Castello that today is still heart of the city life. Therefore an itinerary along the main power centres starts from this square obligatorily.
In the middle of this square there is Palazzo Madama, that better than the others summarizes a millenarian city history: before it was roman gate, then medieval fortress and residence of the Dukes of Savoia and also seat of the Senate of Subalpine Parliament and, at the moment, it is seat of the Civic Museum of Old Art.
Leaving on the right Palazzo Madama, you can go toward the Piazzetta Reale, that is closed at the end by the elegant facade of Palazzo Reale. You may enter into this square through the bronze railing, that was built in 1835 by Pelagio Pelagi and it is decorated by the statues of Castore and Polluce. In the opinion of the esotericism, this is one of the most magic places in Turin.
On the left of piazza Castello, before the railing of Piazzetta Reale, there is the church of San Lorenzo, one of the masterpieces of the european baroque. It was designed by Guarino Guarini and hasn't a facade because the Dukes of Savoia, that had the symbol of their power in piazza Castello, didn't want that the observer could be distracted by other elements. The dome of the church of San Lorenzo, inspired by the mihrab's dome of the Mosque of Cordoba in Spain, is the only visible sign from the outside of the church.
If you leave San Lorenzo, you arrive in Piazzetta Reale, returned to the city after a careful repair. Up to the 80s this square was a car park and it had lost its old symbolic meaning. Today it's one of the dearest places to the tourism: an elegant line of bay trees leads to Palazzo Reale, while, turning your back on the palace, it's possible admiring the perspective's game of piazza Castello and of its strict baroque palaces, that donate to Turin a vaguely parisian atmosphere. The square is closed, besides by Palazzo Reale in the background, by Palazzo dei Duchi Chiablese on the left and by the Armeria Reale on the right. Almost at the corner between Palazzo Reale and Palazzo Chiablese you can see the Cupola of the Sindone, that with the Cupola of San Lorenzo characterizes the sky, seen from piazza Castello.
Palazzo Reale is the result of enlargements and renovations that were started ever since the 17th century. In the middle of the 18th century the wings that come loose along Piazza Castello were added: Biblioteca Reale, Armeria Reale, Segreterie di Stato (at the moment the Prefecture), Archivio di Stato, Teatro Regio, Accademia Militare (destroyed by the bombardments of the World War II and for this reason for a provisionary time transfered to Modena where it is still today). Biblioteca Reale has valuable books and about 200 pictures, among which the famous "Autoritratto" by Leonardo da Vinci and the "Codice sul Volo degli Uccelli". On the upper floor there is the Armeria Reale, the second of Europe, that has valuable arms; on the open gallery, that overlooks piazza Castello from this building, the king Carlo Albero of Sardinia declared the First War of Independence.
If you return to Piazzetta Reale, after that you have seen the wonderful Giardini Reali (today they are reduced to 1/3 of their original surface), you can come back towards piazza Castello and you can turn on the left; under arcades there are entrances of the Biblioteca and of the Armeria Reale and, more ahead, there are the Teatro Regio and the Archivio di Stato. The last one has precious documents of the sabauda history: the first document dates from before 1000. The Teatro Regio has the original facade by Benedetto Alfieri overlooking piazza Castello, but it was rebuilt completely according to the plan of Carlo Mollino, after the fire that destroyed it in 1936 and it has the characteristical shape of an "oyster" that fascinated the bright piedmontese architect.
The visit to the other places of the power can resume if you return to Piazzetta Reale and turn on the left, under the two arches that divide this square from piazza del Duomo. The cathedral of Turin, designed by the tuscan Meo del Caprina da Settignano in the 15th century, is the only Renaissance example of religious architecture that there is in the city. Near the Duomo we can see the beautiful bell tower of San Giovanni; behind the church there is the dome of the Cappella della Sacra Sindone, designed by Guarino Guarini in the 17th century in order to house the sheet that apparently wrapped the corpse of Jesus after the Crucifixion. The dome is a masterpiece of the Baroque and was carried out with a series of superimposed arches that filtrate the light with evocative effects; it was seriously spoilt by a fire in 1997 and, at the moment, it is under repair.
From steps of the Duomo, on the right we can see ruins of the Roman Turin: the old Porta Palatina, one of the most beautiful Roman gates of northern Italy; near there is a beautiful bronze statue dedicated to Cesare Augusto; the Teatro Romano with the cave that leans to the Palazzo dei Cavalieri di Malta. If you walk towards the Roman Turin, not much further you find, in corso Regina Margherita at number 105, the Museum of Antiquity that has the most important findings of Piedmont from the Paleolith to the early Middle Ages. In the opposite direction there is Via XX Settembre and if you turn on the right you find Via Palazzo di Città; if you look back, you can admire the perspective'game of the Mole Antonelliana, that close the view on piazza Castello. If you go on, you arrive at piazzetta del Corpus Domini, on which you can overlook the church with the same name; the church was built in the 15th century in memory of the Miracle of the Host. Along the street, at number 19, Giuseppe Cottolengo began his work in favour of the outcasts and of the poor. The street ends in the beautiful piazza Palazzo di Città; the view of this square is closed by Palazzo Civico. In the past piazza Palazzo di Città was the Piazza delle Erbe, seat of the market.
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Along the Po
In the 17th century Turin was enlarged along the Po and the street, that connected the central piazza Castello (seat of the political power of the Dukedom of Savoia) to the bridge on the river, became the most important artery of the new zone, though it was inclined compared with the perfect orthogonal sector of the new enlargement. The street, in the past called Contrada di Po and today Via Po, was designed by the court architect Amedeo di Castellamonte in 1673 with a particular characteristic: on the left-hand side, where the king passed when he went to the Po, arcades are continuous; on the right-hand side, where the plebeians passed, arcades are interrupted at the end of every block.
In Via Po at number 17 there is the Palace of the University with his elegant courtyard, characterized by the arcade of spiral columns. On the right, at the corner with Via Bogino, there are the memorable Caffè Fiorio, destination of intellectuals and exiles during the Risorgimento, and, more ahead, the church of San Francesco da Paola, built for will of Cristina di Francia. Beyond the church, if you turn on the left, in Via Accademia Albertina, you can see the Gallery of the Accademia Albertina di Belle Arti, that has many masterpieces of Piedmontese art and of flemish school. More ahead, along the same street, there is piazza Carlo Emanuele II, in a popular street called piazza Carlina; some palaces with elegant facades overlook it (at number 13 there is Palazzo d'Ormea, designed by Juvarra) and, especially, the Church of Santa Croce, designed by Juvarra, overlooks this square.
If you return to Via Po, level with Via Montebello, you can see the monument that is the symbol of the city, the Mole Antonelliana by Alessandro Antonelli.
Via Po ends in the neoclassical and magnificent piazza Vittorio Veneto, one of the largest squares in Italy; opposite, the view of the hill is closed in a spectacular way by the church of the Gran Madre di Dio. Piazza Vittorio Veneto, open from Via Po by a large exedra, was designed by Giuseppe Frizzi in 1823 and, with a wise play of arcades and of heights, it hides the drop of 7 metres that divides Via Po from the river.
If you cross the Po, you arrive at the Gran Madre di Dio and, on the right, you can go up to Monte dei Cappuccini, where there is the church of Santa Maria del Monte, designed by Ascanio Vitozzi in the 19th century, in which there is the National Museum of the Mountain. The control of this little hill, close to the city and the bridge on the Po, has a strategic importance for the defence of Turin.
If you return on the other bank, you can go along the river on the left, up to Parco del Valentino; you can go for the walk up to the Parco along the river, along the Murazzi (that become more lively in the summer evenings through the clubs and their concerts) or level with corso Cairoli. Always it's possible to admire the wonderful perspective's game of the torinese hill. If you go over corso Vittorio Emanuele, you can arrive in the Parco del Valentino through a big arch, that is the monument dedicated to the Artiglieria.
In the Park there is the Orto Botanico, an open-air museum with hundred-year-old trees, and the Castello del Valentino, the royal palace of Cristina di Francia when she became duchess of Savoia.
Beyond the Castello del Valentino, there is the Palazzina della Promotrice delle Belle Arti, that, in neoclassical style, houses temporary exhibitions in its rooms. If you continue this walk, you arrive at the Palace of the Turin Exposures, seat of some of the most important city fairs and expositions. On the left, before the Turin Exposures, you can go down to the medieval Borgo and Rocca, carried out in the last century, following the example of some patrician residences of the piedmontese and of the Val d'Aosta Middle Ages.
Some kilometres ahead, along the river, in corso Unità d'Italia, you can visit the National Museum of the Automobile, that boastes one of the most important European collections of memorable cars.
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Through the set of "Elisa di Rivombrosa"
"Elisa di Rivombrosa" was, suprisingly, the television success of the winter season 2003-2004. Over 10 million viewers have followed the incidents of the count Fabrizio Ristori and of the beautiful Elisa Scalzi in the sabaudo and 18th-century Piedmont. Thus, in this itinerary, we want to go along the places in which the two protagonists of "Elisa di Rivombrosa" are pursued and loved each other, in spite of obstacles, conspiracies and infidelities.
We can see the Castle of Rivombrosa, in which the love between the count, that was back from France, and Elisa, that was the lady-companion of the countess mother Agnese, was born; we can see also the Castle of Aglie that is one of the most beautiful Savoy residences, it is about 40 km away up north of Turin, in the heart of the Canavese. The building was built in the 12th century and it assumed the present shapes in the 17th century, when Filippo di San Martino, advisor and lover of the duchess Cristina di Francia, Regent of the Savoia's Dukedom, wanted to transform it in an elegant and luxury residence, entrusting the plan to Amedeo di Castellamonte, one of the creators of the capital's transformation of the Savoy Dukedom. The building was enlarged and divided in two parts, linked by a gallery; among the most important rooms there is also the ballroom, decorated with frescos inspired to the life of the king Arduino. The countess mother of the Ristori dies in this room.
Instead in the greenhouses of the residence there are the districts of the servers and the places of the first clashes between Fabrizio, still incapable of admitting the love for a girl of lower rank, and Elisa, surprised and proud. And in this zone there are the dungeons in which Fabrizio confines Elisa in revenge. Also the long rides of Elisa with her horse Fedro were settled in the Parco di Aglie. Through "Elisa di Rivombrosa", the Castle of Aglie has become famous and it has many visitors.
Near there, in San Giorgio Canavese, there is the residence of the "bad character" of the story, the perfidious marchioness Lucrezia van Ecker; she is conspirator against Carlo Emanuele and she is wife of the advisor of the king, the marquis of Beauville (that she doesn't hesitate to murder) but she is also lover of the "evil" duke Ottavio Ranieri, governor of the Province. Like almost all the noble residences of the Piedmont, also the Castle of San Giorgio originates from a medieval fortress, subsequently transformed in a luxury residence. The Castle, today seat of one of the most highly-appreciated places of the Canavese's restaurant industries, has an 18th-century and elegant look; its rooms, in which the arrogant Lucrezia and the loyal Isabella have played with elegance, were restored recently.
Again outside Turin, this time toward south, in the Cuneese, there is the Castle of Racconigi, in which there is the regiment of Fabrizio. Here the count gets wind of a conspiracy against the king for the first time and he guesses that the document, that he has found when he was back to Rivombrosa, is very important, and perhaps it is compromising for part of the nobility of the Reign. Here, with the help of the trustworthy Angelo, the count escapes for the first time from the gang of the duke Ranieri, that already considers Fabrizio as an enemy. The Castle of Racconigi is one of the most important Savoy residences: for a long period it was the seat of the family Savoia-Carignano, come to the throne with Carlo Alberto and present pretender to the throne of Italy. In the 17th century the castle had the first big transformation and it was transformed by medieval fortress in a noble residence; in the 18th century the two pavilions, the adjacent terrace and the steps were built; in 1832 there were the last transformation that have created the current look.
Then you can go through the torinese places of the serial in Turin. The first place is the beautiful Palazzina di Caccia di Stupinigi, that is a masterpiece of the European Baroque. The entrance avenue, at the end of the long straight one that arrives directly from the centre of Turin, is encircled by an hemicycle of stables and it is closed by the wonderful view of the Palazzina, characterized by an original plan in the shape of a cross of Sant'Andrea; in the center there is the sumptuous central elliptical salon, that is decorated, on the roof, by the deer, protagonist of the hunting races of the Savoia. In this beautiful Palazzina was fixed as the Savoy court in the serial and here fates of the protagonists cross each other many times.
Fabrizio, in search of the first contact with the king to deliver him the list of the conspirators, is accompanied by Lucrezia to the entrance of the Palazzina; in the internal salons the count guesses that the Duke Ranieri is one of the conspirators and still inside the Palazzina Lucrezia kills the husband so that all the responsibility falls on Fabrizio, that has refused her and that insists in order to give the list of the conspirators to the king.
In the Cavallerizza Reale, behind Via Verdi, in the centre of the city, the scenes of the attack on the king, that is foiled by Fabrizio Ristori, Elisa and Angelo, happen. In the same zone, there is the prison in which Fabrizio is confined unfairly, accused of the murder of the king's advisor. The duchess Clelia Bussani, cousin of the king and friend of Fabrizio and Elisa, greets Elisa, that arrives with the list of the conspirators, from the elegant balcony of Palazzo Paesana di Saluzzo, in Via della Consolata, at the corner with Piazzetta Savoia, while the love triumphing again at Rivombrosa-Aglie with Elisa that is appointed countess from the king, affected by her courage.
- Castle of Aglie
- Opening Hours:in winter:Thursday,Saturday and Sunday from 9 to 12 and from 14 to 17
- in summer:Tuesday to Sunday from 9 to 12 and from 14 to 19
- Phone: +39 0124 330102
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Places of contemporary Art
Lovers of modern and contemporary art that arrive at Turin must know that there are two fixed stops.
The first stop is the Civic Gallery of Modern and Contemporary Art (SEE MUSEUMS), that has an artistic property constituted by about 15.000 art works among pictures, sculptures, installations and photos, besides a rich collection of drawings and incisions, and they date back to the end of the 18th century to the Futurism and up to nowadays.
The second stop is the Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (SEE MUSEUMS), that is placed in the Castle of Rivoli, on the panoramic hill of Rivoli; since the two museums are quite apart from each other, it's necessary to have means of transport for the movement.
The Museum has 39 showrooms that are always prepared with a special attention to the greatest artistic personalities of today, european and american.
The so-called "Manica Lunga", the old art-gallery that Carlo Emanuele wanted, was restored and prepared to hold in addition to the exhibition activities promoted by the Museum, also the scientific, didactic and additional functions to the service of the public.
If you go in Turin during the right periods of the year, after the visit to the museums, you can see a little more contemporary art: for example, you can go for a walk through Piazza San Carlo, where every year there is the "ManifesTO", the city exhibition of road poster transformed in works of art. Moreover, in November, at the Lingotto Fiere there is the "Altissima", one of the most aspired engagements for the most current and audacious "incubator" of great worldwide events contemporary art. Finally, if you are in Turin during the Christmas holidays, you don't miss "Luci d'Artista": walking along the streets of Turin, the sky will be illuminated by the bright installations that artists, that take part in the project, carry out for this occasion.
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Through Churches of the old part of Turin
We start this "traditional" itinerary from the Renaissance Duomo in Piazza del Duomo (Piazza San Giovanni); then our itinerary comes untied among the oldest streets of the city, where there are the most important churches of the artistic and religious history of Turin.
If you walk on the Via XX Settembre, you can see the baroque palace of the Archiepiscopal Seminary on the right; then you can turn on the right, in Via Garibaldi: at once at the corner with XX Settembre, at number 6, there is the Church of the S.S. Trinità where the architect Ascanio Vitozzi is buried: he designed the inside of this church that afterwards was adorned by Juvarra. Instead the neoclassical facade was built in 1830 by Angelo Marchini.
If you turn on the right, you arrive in Piazza Corpus Domini, characterized by low grey arcades, where there is the Basilica with the same name, built following the plan of Ascanio Vitozzi and then modified by Benedetto Alfieri; this church was built in memory of the so-called "Miracolo di torino" that is happened in that place in 1453: a thief tried to sell holy loot that came from the church of Exilles in Val di Susa; suddenly from the bag a shining Host came out and rose in air, but after the prayers of the believers and the words of the bishop Ludovico di Romagnano it came down.
You go on along Via Palazzo di Città up to the square with the same name, where during the roman age there was the Foro and now there is the Municipal Building, designed by Francesco Lanfranchi in 1663. The square is an harmonious and uniform block where the space, without garden, is organized in a wise way; in the middle of it there is the monument dedicated to the Conte Verde, Amedeo VI di Savoia, carried out by Pelagio Palagi.
The itinerary continues along Via Garibaldi: at the corner with Via Botero, at number 25, you can visit the Church of the S.S. Martiri, the biggest church in the district and, perhaps, one of the most luxurious of the city. It was built in 1577 by the architect Pellegrino Ribaldi; inside, this Church has a longitudinal plan with only one large nave and there is an high altar, designed by Juvarra.
In Via Garibaldi at number 25 there is also the imposing main door of the "Casa Professa dei Gesuiti", that allows to go, besides in municipal offices, in the beautiful chapel of the Pia Congregazione dei Banchieri e dei Mercanti, that is a masterpiece of baroque art and seat of the Confraternity, founded in 1663. If you enter into the chapel, you can admire the vault in fresco, carried out in the second part of the 17th century by Legnanino, and the woodcarvings of the "Dottori della Chiesa", carried out by Carlo Giuseppe Plura.
If you return in Via Garibaldi and you pay attention to streets that intersect, you find Via delle Orfane and you arrive at the last church of the street, the Parrocchia di San Dalmazzo. It has 16th-century origin, in the 18th century the building was adorned outside by the Barnabiti and at the end of the 19th century it was transformed inside in neo-medieval style. Before leaving Via Garibaldi, on the left, you can go to Via della Misericordia to admire the Church of the Misericordia (Via Barbaroux, 41), seat of the Confraternity that helps condemned persons. The present structure was designed by the architect Nicolis di Robilant in the 18th century, while the unfinished facade dating back to 1828. There is an oddness about this church: here every Sunday the Mass is celebrated in Latin, following the ritual of S.Pio V, and it is accompanied by Gregorian chants.
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Turin 2006: from 10th to 26th of February, 2006, the city of Turin and other six villages of the province gave hospitality to the Winter Olympic Games, involving more than 2500 athletes that came from 80 Countries and competed in 15 sports.
The city changed and not only because of the ferment that entertained it for that waiting period, but also because of the creation of new places for sport, born from the bold creativity of famous international architects: Arata Isozaky, Gae Aulenti, Studio HOK Sport of London, Benedetto Camerana, Giorgio Rosental and the AIA architets group. Turin 2006 changed quicker the city but also its inhabitants; with this itinerary we have thought to cover the inside of the city in search of new sport architectural creations: all these buildings are modern centres for sport, business and entertainment.
The "Oval" is a building that was designed by offices of architects "HOK Sport" of London and "Zoppini" of Milan and was built between June 2003 and August 2005. It was placed in the zone of Lingotto, near the Olympic Village and connected with the centre of the city and the railway stations through an embedded net of public transport.
During the Olympic Games it gave hospitality to the ice-skating races of speed on a ring of 400 m for the different men and women specialities, while after the Olympiad this building is used for fairs and exhibitions, connected to the "Lingotto Fiere" structure, but it remains also a ice sports framework.
The surface of the building is 2,500 m long and it has a refrigerated track for the circular ice. The "Oval", moreover, has a steel roof structure with a large window, that is completely hanging, without intermediate supports, so as to create a unique free area. Along the perimeter of the track, on the stands for the spectators, there were about 8,000 seats during the Olympiad, but after these Games 2,000 seats are removed.
The new "indoor stadium", that was the official olympic seat of practice, is placed in Turin, in corso Tazzoli, in the southwest quadrant of the city; the system of urban public transport assures an easy arrival in the area.
The structure is perfectly integrated in the town planning of Turin, because it is connected with the two characters of the city: rational and baroque. This is possible through the large curvilinear wall, the bricks in sight and the play of light.
The ice rink in corso Tazzoli is a sports structure that serves the city. During the Olympic Games the ice-skating practices of figure and short-track took place here; now it is the centre of ice sport in Turin, where also ordinary people can emulate steps of the biggest olympic champions.
Palavela was not built for Turin 2006: it was designed on the occasion of Expo "Italy'61", for the first centenary of the Italian Unity. Nevertheless, for this event of 2006 it was renovated between May 2003 and February 2005 by architects Gae Aulenti and Arnaldo De Bernardi, that transformed it with their daring architecture in an amphitheatre that has 2,000 seats and in a room with 2,800 seats. The main building is inscribed into a circle of 150 m in diameter and it is based on only three fulcra; the circular internal base has the length of 130 m and the height of 29 m.
After the Games, Palavela is used for the execution of all sports, that are possible to practise here, and of other extra-sports activities, for example concerts, conventions and fairs.
It is placed in the southeast zone of Turin, in the area between corso Unità d'Italia and Via Ventimiglia, on the left bank of the Po, inside the "Distretto Olimpico" of the Lingotto.
In the Palavela there were the races of figure skating and short track.
Palahokey (Olympic Indoor Stadium)
The project of Palahokey was done by the Japanese architect Arata Isozaki; this building has a minimalist and innovative structure, in which the steel becomes a mirror for the nature and the sky; it is made by a large volume of inox steel of 183x100 m, hanging on a base that is 5 m high and is made out of glass towards the park.
The new palahockey is placed near the old stadium, side by side to corso Galileo Ferraris.
It was the seat of the olympic races during Turin 2006, and now it is the seat of sporting events, concerts, shows and exhibitions.
Inside the pavilion "Giovanni Agnelli" of Turin Expo, in corso Massimo d'Azeglio and near "Distretto Olimpico", a temporary structure with a race field of 30 m x 60 m and with about 6,000 seats was prepared. This field gave hospitality to several ice hockey matches; but it was temporary and after the Olympiad it was returned to its regular use.
The Olympic Stadium
It was seat of the opening and closing Ceremony of the Olympic Games; it is placed in the popular area of Santa Rita, in the south, between corso Sebastopoli and Via Filadelfia.
The Olympic Stadium was the ex-town Stadium, that was built in 1933 and for Turin 2006 it was restored and reutilized at the "Torino" Football Club's expense. That was agreed with the Municipality of Turin in exchange for a ninety-year-old right on the surface. The intervention of repair included the production of a third link of terraces, surmounted by a continuous roofing, and the existing structures were put in conformity with the law. It has sufficient capacity for 27,500 spectators.
For the Ceremonies series of interventions ad hoc were foreseen: the enlargement of the number of seats through temporary structures, the production of an imposing set-technical design and the preparation of the olympic cauldron. During the Ceremonies the Stadium had sufficient capacity for 35.000 spectators.
After the Olympic Games, the Town Stadium give hospitality to the homely matches of the "Torino" Football Club.
The Olympic Village
The Olympic Village of Turin is one of the three villages that gave hospitality to the 2,600 athletes during the Olympic Games (the other two were placed at Sestriere and Bardonecchia). Its total surface is of about 70.000 sm.
The project was chosen through an international examination, that was won by a group coordinated by architects Benedetto Camerana and Giorgio Rosental. The area affected by this project, near Lingotto, was connected by a pedestrian bridge to the general headquarters of Turin 2006, and it was bigger than 100.000 sm.
The imposing arch bridge symbolizes the transformation from a place for the market to the Olympic Village and it is a confirmation of the passage from the past to the future and it is the emblem that Turin is changing.
Inside the Olympic Village there were a centre of deposit, a shopping centre, a refectory for athletes and companions, medical and massage rooms, zones reserved to the personnel of the Village and others for spare time. Around the central complex residential structures for athletes were built; in the same complex a Media Village was realized.
The Village was carried out following the principle of the bio-architecture: photovoltaic panels and cells, a net of tele-heating and solar systems with air for ventilation; there was a 60% saving of used energy and of polluting emissions. After the Olympic Games it has become heritage of the city; It is partly used as a residential area, and partly to give hospitality to spaces for research and advanced services.
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