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10 Interesting Facts You May Not Know About The Royal Palace of Madrid

The Royal Palace of Madrid, also known as Palacio Real Madrid is the largest palace in Western Europe and is a must-see on your Madrid bucket list. Famous for its extravagant furniture, mesmerizing frescos, bronze collection, and vast gardens, there is so much to explore in this official residence of the Spanish Monarchy.

Read on to know interesting facts about the Royal Palace of Madrid.

10 Interesting Facts About The Royal Palace of Madrid

Royal Palace of Madrid facts

1. The Royal Palace of Madrid was built by Muhammad I

The palace was originally built by Muhammad I Umayyad Emir of Cordoba, and he used it as an outpost during his reign. Eventually, King Henry III revamped it by adding towers as it was used for defensive activities too. Later, his son used the palace as his royal residence. After Philip II came into being, he made Madrid the capital of Spain and decided to renovate the entire palace.

Royal Palace of Madrid facts

2. The interiors are extravagant and royal

The interiors of the Royal Palace of Madrid are designed using expensive materials such as mahogany doors, Spanish marble, and stucco. You can also admire paintings by some famous artists like Juan de Flandes, Caravaggio, Francisco de Goya, and Velazquez. Everything in the palace showcases the historic and artistic culture of the Spanish. It also houses Spain’s premiere clock, watches, expensive silverware, and furniture that was used by the royals back in the day.

Royal Palace of Madrid facts

3. The Royal Palace of Madrid stands on a once-upon-a-time Moorish Castle

The Royal Palace of Madrid is built on the site of an old Moorish Alcazar fortress. In 1083, King Alfonso VI took over Madrid and used the fortress at times, and eventually made it his residence in 1329. Later, in 1734, the Palace was destroyed in a fire and a new one was built by orders of King Felipe V.

Royal Palace of Madrid facts

4. The Royal Palace of Madrid was destroyed in a fire

The Royal Palace was destroyed by a fire in 1734 and it was delayed in putting it out because the locals misunderstood the warning bells to be a call for prayers. Major art pieces were destroyed in the fire including the Expulsion of the Moors, by Diego Velazquez.

Royal Palace of Madrid facts

5. The Grand staircase within the palace is made from a single marble

This is a very interesting fact about the Royal Palace of Madrid as the staircase is made from a single piece of San Agustin marble. It has more than 70 steps that lead to different rooms that are open to the public. At the bottom, there are two lions sculpted by Felipe de Castro and Robert Michel.

Royal Palace of Madrid facts

6. The Royal Palace of Madrid was expanded by Charles III

Charles III hired an architect called Sicilian Francesco Sabatini to extend the palace. He designed to add galleries and arcades around the palace but managed to complete just one square on the southern side. The north side has a royal stable. Later in the 20th century, the stable was demolished and the Sabatini gardens were made.

Royal Palace of Madrid facts

7. Designer of the Sabatini Garden

The gardens were designed in symmetrical French designs in 1933 under the Republican government. The designer of the Sabatini Garden was architect Fernando Garcia Mercadel. The garden was given this name because Sabatini was the first one who designed the stables that had once occupied the current garden area.

Royal Palace of Madrid facts

8. King Philip II commissioned Campo del Moro Garden

The Royal Palace gardens are known as the Campo del Moro, which means The Moor’s Field. It was first created on the orders of King Philip II and was later improved by King Philip IV by adding fountains and different plants in the garden.

Royal Palace of Madrid facts

9. The Throne Room is the largest in the Royal Palace of Madrid

Known for being the most magnificent room in the entire palace, the Throne Room features mirrors with rich furnishing used to decorate. Designed by Tirpolo, managed to add beauty and elegance to the room through his paintings. This room consisted of all the decorations preserved from the time of King Charles III.

Royal Palace of Madrid facts

10. The Royal armory and Crown Room in the Royal Palace of Madrid

Curated from pieces from the 13th century, the Royal Armoury is known for being one of the best in the world. Tools used by Emperor Charles V in his battles are displayed. Shields and burgonet hats designed by Francesco and Filippo Negroli can be found as well. The Crown Room houses the Crown jewels and Scepter of the Spanish Monarchy.




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Frequently Asked Questions About Royal Palace of Madrid Facts

Q. What is the Royal Palace of Madrid?

A. The Royal Palace of Madrid is the official residence of the Spanish royalty in the city of Madrid. It is currently used only for state ceremonies.

Q. What is the most interesting fact about the Royal Palace of Madrid?

A. The Royal Palace of Madrid is the largest in Europe by floor area, with 870 windows, 240 balconies, and 44 staircases.

Q. Where is the Royal Palace of Madrid?

A. The Royal Palace of Madrid is situated in the western part of downtown Madrid, east of the Manzanares River.

Q. Who built the <POI>? [Applicable to historical monuments, churches, and museums]

A. The original building of the Orsay Museum was built by Lucien Magne, Émile Bénard and Victor Laloux.

Q. Who built the Royal Palace of Madrid?

A. The initial architect who built the Royal Palace of Madrid was Filippo Juvarra. It was later taken over by architect Giambattista Sacchetti in 1736 and by Francesco Sabatini in 1760.

Q. How old is the Royal Palace of Madrid?

A. The Royal Palace of Madrid is 288 years old.

Q. What building was there before the Royal Palace of Madrid?

A. The Royal Palace of Madrid sits on the site of the old Alcazar of Madrid, a medieval fortress that was made into a palace where Philip II made an official residence of the kings of Spain.

Q. What artworks are inside the Royal Palace of Madrid?

A. The walls of the Royal Palace of Madrid are adorned with four portraits of the royal family, painted by the famous artist Francisco de Goya.

Q. Are there paintings by famous artists in the Royal Palace of Madrid?

A. There are about 2000 pieces of art and 600 sculptures at the Orsay Museum.

Q. What famous paintings are inside the <POI>?

A. Yes, you can find paintings done by famous artists like Caravaggio, Francisco de Goya and Velazquez, Juan de Flandes, and frescoes by Giovanni Battista Tiepolo, Anton Raphael Mengs, and Corrado Giaquinto.