Casa Pilatos is an Andalusian palace. The palace is of Italian Renaissance-Mudejar style. It is composed of romantic elements and is considered the best Andalusian noble building and is also an example of Sevillian architecture of the sixteenth century.
The palace is declared of Cultural Interest and Historical Heritage of Spain. This palace receives thousands of tourists every year. Its spaces, details and interesting history have made it a cultural offer difficult to ignore. So, if it catches your attention, keep reading as we will tell you all the secrets of this palace, which you have to visit at least once in your life, as it is one of the essential visits in Seville for all lovers of classical architecture. Are you going to miss it? Visit it and delve into its history.
This palace is located in the Santa Catalina-Santiago Sector, near Águilas Street and the Jewish Quarter, specifically in Pilatos Square.
It occupies, together with the bordering Convent of San Leandro, most of the block that extends between Caballeriza, San Esteban and Imperial streets. Behind it is located the Church of San Esteban.
This palace was formerly a residence of the Dukes of Medinaceli and was also the headquarters of the Ducal House of Medinaceli Foundation, which is dedicated to the management of a historical-artistic heritage scattered throughout the autonomous communities of Spain.
In 1483 the palace was built by decision of Pedro Enríquez de Quiñones and his wife Catalina de Ribera, Adelantado Mayor de Andalucía, progenitor of the House of Alcalá de los Gazules, lord of Tarifa. All these houses were incorporated into the Duchy of Medinaceli in 1683. The palace perfectly combines the Mudejar style with the Renaissance style, making it a work of art to visit.
The palace is so named because Fabrique traveled to Jerusalem in 1519. On his return from his trip, Fabrique realized that the distance between the house of Pontius Pilate and Golgotha was the same distance between his palace and the Cross of the Field.
When he realized the distance, he traced a Way of the Cross with 12 stations for the Catholic society. Today, we can still see the tiles at each stop.
Later Joaquín González Moreno, was the archivist of the Casa de Pilatos and this was the person who recovered that tradition. This tradition was reestablished in 1971. In the sixteenth century, the Via Crucis began at the door of the palace as the first station and this ends at the shrine of the Cruz de Campo, which was a neighborhood of Nervion. This made it the core of Holy Week in Seville.
To visit the palace must be accessed through a marble portal, Renaissance style and topped by a Gothic cresting.
The palace revolves around two courtyards, one is the entrance courtyard and the other is the main courtyard. Around these two you will see the two-story main building. On either side of the main building there are two gardens of different sizes and shapes. On the east side the garden is called “Jardín Chico” and on the west side it is called “Jardín Grande”.
If we go through the double gallery of its north front from the halt you will see the main courtyard.
This patio has large dimensions, approximately 25×25 cm. The patio has a quadrangular plan and a route through galleries, with a typical Andalusian patio, a fountain in the center and on the sides two statues of the goddess Palas.
In one of the galleries, in the lower gallery, you can see 24 busts. These are placed among Roman and Spanish emperors and other relevant characters such as Romulus, Charles V, or Hadrian among others. Many of the relevant characters come from the ruins of Italica.
In this courtyard you can clearly see the different styles of this building, with Gothic, Mudejar, Renaissance and Romantic elements. Formerly the courtyard had a rectangular shape with porticoes on its sides. In the 19th century several novelties were introduced in the courtyard, such as the romantic taste, the opening of an access in the center, the marble floor or the placement of new pseudo-Nazarite mullioned windows.
The building consists of several rooms around the main courtyard. On this floor you reach the monumental staircase. This staircase connects the lower and upper floors of the palace and is decorated with admirable colorful tile skirting boards and a large wooden dome on the ceiling.
This floor consists of several rooms with collections of paintings or tapestries dating from the sixteenth to the nineteenth centuries. All the rooms are perfectly furnished.
On the upper floor, one of the most important frescoes in the building is worth mentioning. The fresco was painted by Francisco Pacheco and dates from the 17th century. In this fresco predominates the apotheosis of Hercules. But, not only this fresco stands out. It is also worth mentioning a painting on copper with the theme of “bullfighting” and this was painted by Francisco de Goya. In addition, you will also find a still life of Giuseppe Recco, a painted panel with the image of the Magdalena of the XVI century and three works of the painter Lucas Jordán.
This chapel is located to the north of the courtyard and dates from the 15th century, in Gothic style and with a Mudejar decoration.
This chapel is one of the great attractions of the city of Seville, stands out both for the building itself, and for the palace. This evolved over the centuries, but especially in the Renaissance period.
The small chapel is only 42 square meters. It is formed by a pink jasper column in the center. This jasper symbolizes the pillar where Christ was bound to suffer the tortures in the original Palace of Pilate in Jerusalem.
Although the chapel is small, at the back you will see an altar decorated with tiles in shades of green and brown. Above the altar is the statue of the Good Shepherd, a sculptural work of the fourth century.
This chapel stands out for being the only room in the palace that was built in the Gothic style, since Christianity at that time recognized this architectural style with religiosity and the approach to the kingdom of heaven. On the edges of the vault are represented the coats of arms of different houses of the Ducal family. In addition, on the corbels you can see small representations of angels, although these are nowadays deteriorated.
In these gardens you will find tranquility and great beauty. They are typical of the noble palaces in the center of the city. These gardens can be accessed from the main courtyard or from the pavilion. In the two gardens you will find an infinity of art, surrounded by plinths and grilles in plateresque style.
The large garden was renovated in the 19th century and is now in the 21st century. This garden consists of two galleries with triple arches on columns and niches for busts. This garden also consists of a central fountain and paths bordered by hedges. In the garden, one of the walls stands out, which is formed by a magnificent Streptosolen that looks for the light that reaches the roofs, orange trees…
The small garden is also called “Praetorium”. It stands out because it is divided into four spaces with different levels and houses a large rectangular pond. The pond is decorated with a young Bacchus and this reminds us of the right that this garden had to have “standing water” from the Caños de Carmona. This garden has a simple decoration with sumptuous air and where you can also breathe the air of a garden with a lot of history. The garden is formed by bougainvilleas on the sunny walls or pots around the pond.
To enter this palace, you should know that it is open every day of the week and with a schedule from 9:00 to 18:00 hours in the winter schedule.
If you are going to access it in summer, you should know that in the summer schedule is also open every day of the week and with a schedule of 9:00 to 19:00 hours.
The entrance fee to visit the palace varies depending on the areas you want to visit. If you want to visit the whole house the price is 12 € with an audio guide included for free. But if you only want to visit the first floor of the palace the price is 10 €.
If you need a special, private or group visit, please contact us and ask for the price at the following e-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org or at the following telephone number: +34 688 376 581.
The palace from the Cathedral of Seville, is only 10 minutes’ walk, so once you visit the impressive cathedral, you can go to the Casa Pilatos, which will be totally surprised and will delight you. From the Cathedral you can also access by private transport.
From Seville-Santa Justa station, the palace is also nearby. If we want to go by private transport, it is only 7 minutes away by Juan Antonio Cavestany Street. If we want to go by public transport, we must take the line 21, which is only 2 stops. To take this line you must walk for 4 minutes until you reach the stop “José Laguillo” and once you have taken the bus, you must get off at the stop “Menéndez Pelayo” and then walk another 4 minutes until you reach Casa Pilatos.
Another option if you are at the station is to walk, since it is only 17 minutes from the station, and you would have to walk along Juan Antonio Cavestany Street until you reach Pilatos Square.
One of the curiosities is its construction since it was started in 1483 by Pedro Enriquez de Quiñones and his wife Catalina de Ribera. This building was erected on land that had been confiscated by the Inquisition.
Another curiosity is that once you visit the palace it will take you on a trip to Jerusalem, since the name of the palace is due to a trip of Fadrique Enriquez de Ribera to Jerusalem and there he discovered the distance between the house of Pontius Pilate and Golgotha.
This palace also stands out for the relics in every corner, and for its small chapel, where you can see a column in which the legend tells the scourging of Christ. In addition, in this palace you will see classical sculpture, so if you are an art lover you cannot miss it.
Another curiosity to highlight is that it is the largest private palace in Seville and is also considered the best Andalusian noble building, being this example of Sevillian architecture of the sixteenth century.
Finally, it is worth mentioning that Goya is present in this palace and that it is a movie palace since it has been used in 4 Hollywood productions such as “The Kingdom of Heaven” or even national productions such as “The Knight Don Quixote”.
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