Lucca was a rich city of the merchants, and that is why we see numerous palaces and beautiful structures and churches which the rich people built. One of them is Palazzo Bernardini. Bernardini Palace was constructed from 1517 to 1523 and is a popular tourist destination in Lucca. The wealthy family of Bernardini commissioned to build the palace and entrusted the work to architect Nicolao Civitali to build the palace. The palace stands in the popular square
The interesting story behind the palace construction
In those times, to build a palace, there used to be the demolition of the existing structures, and that was what happened during the construction of Bernardini. It is said that the architect and the owner decided to demolish the image of Madonna and build the palace. When the project was under construction and came to the spot where the image was erected. At this spot, they planned to make windows. The stone to be placed there sagged and broke away from the frame of the wall. It was the place where the image of Madonna stood, and that is why it astonished people. The workers tried to replace the stone often, but there was no success, and thus the stone was kept as it is since that time. The workers also tried to fix it with other materials, but everything failed to fix the stone. Bernardini then regretted the decision of destructing the image and said that they should not stand against the superior forces and so the stone was left as it is. The locals say that the devil himself told Bernardini not to demolish the statue, but still Bernardini went ahead to demolish and built the palace. However, the curse of the devil fell on the palace, and thus we see the window as it was then. It was never built the way other windows were built and the reason for that was the devil who insisted on holding the construction of the palace and the owner did not.
What would visitors find here?
The palace has a great architecture with plenty of historic designs that would definitely amaze you. The design is prominent and makes the palace a grand one. Of course, the protruding stonework on one of the windows of the palace is the greatest attraction due to the story that follows it. The unfinished work of the windows is a mystery and tourist loves it when it comes to such unsolved stories. It’s a huge palace, and one would definitely wonder as to why the rest of the palace is intact and why just the window is incomplete. The architecture that you see is with double lancet windows on the first floor and the stringcourses and pilaster strips on the ground floor. The courtyard is elegant with columns and pillars decorated with capitals that are typical of Lucca. The ceilings come with lacunars and some have paintings and others with decorative elements. The main entrance has an arch with gothic work on it and beautiful door knockers that have Moor heads on them. The ground floor has large halls perfect for dances and parties.
Due to the location of the palace in the Piazza Bernardini, the place is quite popular with vast tourist inflow and many entertainment activities too. The Piazza Bernardini was created in 1785 by demolishing the structure to create the square. The palace today has the largest private collection of sculptures, paintings, ceramics, and other objects from the 16th century onwards. In the square, you also find great restaurants where one can find delicious food and even snack bars that cater to different styles of food as well as local dishes.