This was the first, superb example of a noble home in Renaissance Florence. It was built between 1444 and 1462 by Michelozzo di Bartolomeo for the Medici family, who made their chief residence until 1540.
Note the distinctive graduation of the external facing, progressing from the high-relief rustication of the ground floor to the hewn ashlars of the second floor and ending with the smooth surface of the third floor.
The facades, with twin-light mullioned windows, are topped with by a sharply jutting cornice, in the classic style. Inside you can admire the wonderful Magi chapel, a masterpiece of the early Florentine Renaissance, frescoed by Benozzo Gozzoli.
The chapel – square, with a small apse for the altar – contains carved and inland wooden stalls along the walls; the ceiling is also made of carved, painted, and gilt wood, while the floor is decorated with inlaid marble and porphyry. Palazzo Medici Riccardi, today, is the seat of the Prefecture and the Province of Florence. It is also an art exhibitions venue.
For any information:
Palazzo Medici Riccardi e Cappella dei Magi
Via Cavour (055 2760304).
Admission: 4 euro.