Palazzo Blu

The Palazzo Blu was initially known as the Palazzo Rosselmini Gualandi. 

The palace serves as the headquarters of the Pisa Foundation, which has transformed it into the city’s main exhibition center. 

Palazzo Blu is located on the southern bank of the Arno River, in the center of Pisa’s historic district.

It is the site of major cultural events and temporary exhibitions. 

The facade’s color dates back to the nineteenth century, most likely due to the preferences of St. Petersburg visitors who stayed there.

The palace houses the Pisa Foundation’s permanent collection, which has acquired important works of art from the Pisa region. 

The permanent art exhibition is divided into three sections:

  • The Pisa Foundation’s art collections on the second floor
  • The aristocratic residence
  • The Simoneschi Collection on the second floor

On the basement floor is the Fondamenta, a new exhibition section dedicated to archaeology and medieval history.

Some renowned artists have displayed their works in this fantastic cultural place.

The collection’s original nucleus has been supplemented with works by important authors such as Nino Pisano, Orazio and Artemisia Gentileschi, Orazio Riminaldi, and Tribolo.

In addition to individual works, the Foundation has purchased entire collections, such as Ottavio Simoneschi’s or Luciano Frassi’s rich photographic archive, which documents city life in the second half of the twentieth century.

Palazzo Blu Pisa added more than 300 works of art to the collection to trace local artists and collectors.

Numerous archaeological documents from the Etruscan, Roman and Hellenistic eras are also featured in the display. 

On a trip to the Leaning Tower of Pisa, we suggest booking a guided tour and visiting this magnificently preserved 14th-century structure.

Palazzo blu timings

Some of the most renowned artists have displayed their works in this fantastic cultural place.

The Museum of Art and Culture in Pisa is located in a few of the former palazzo’s rooms.

The Palazzo Blu Pisa features more than 300 works of art that were later added to the collection to track down the local artists and collectors.

Numerous archaeological documents from the Etruscan, Roman and Hellenistic eras are also featured in the display.

The Pisa Foundation’s collections are open from Tuesday to Friday from 10 am to 7 pm and Saturday and Sunday from 10 am to 8 pm.

The last admission is one hour before the doors close.

Palazzo Blu directions

The bus stop in front of the BLU entrance is served by Compagnia Pisana Trasporti, which operates lines 2, 4, 5, 14, LAM ROSSA, and LAM VERDE.

For those arriving in Pisa by car, LA STAZIONE SAN GIUSTO/AURELIA of Pisa Mover is accessible from Via di Goletta. 

The new roundabout at Via Aurelia has two large parking lots and can be reached in a few minutes. 

It is about a 10-minute walk along Corso Italia from Palazzo Blu station.

The area is served by a bus, and Pisa’s central train station is only a short walk away.

Palazzo Blu History

In the 11th century, during the peak of the Maritime Republic of Pisa, the first settlements were established, marking the historical roots of Palazzo Blu Pisa.

It stood strategically at the outset of what is now recognized as Ponte di Mezzo, adjacent to the palace of one of the city’s most influential families.

While the building’s core dates back to the 16th century, it reached its final form in the middle of the 19th century.

This Gambacorta family is now the seat of the City Council. 

The residence was altered and renovated over the centuries, and in the Middle Ages, it belonged to various noble families, including the first and last ‘Doge’ of Pisa, Giovanni dell’Agnello.

It consisted of two tower houses adjacent to each other at the time. In 1356, the family built a footbridge connecting these to another house.

The family was expelled from Pisa in 1368, but they kept the palace. The palace changed hands in the 16th century. 

It was first purchased by the Sancasciani and then by the Del Testa.

The facade was refurbished and rebuilt before the Bracci Cambini family purchased the building in 1789.

The palace was painted in the mid-18th century, possibly to accommodate guests from St. Petersburg. 

Restorations started in the late 1800s and have continued to the present day. 

The most recent major intervention, the addition of an eastward wing, was carried out by previous owner Domenico Giuli in the years following Italy’s unification.

The noble Archinto family purchased it in 1807 and some surrounding lands to extend the facade to the west. 

They demolished the old footbridge and constructed a narrow alleyway leading to the Santa Cristina Church. The palace’s color also dates back to this period.

Domenico Giuli, another nobleman, purchased it in 1864 and had a new wing built on it, restoring the facade’s symmetry. 

He also linked it to another property, the Palazzo Casarosa.

The Fondazione Pisa purchased it at the beginning of the twenty-first century and has since been used as an exhibition space and cultural center.

The Fondazione Pisa, formerly known as the Fondazione Cassa di Risparmio di Pisa, purchased Palazzo Blu in 2001 and has made it a public space since 2008. 

Restoration and recovery work was completed in 2007, improving the palace while retaining its existing structures.

The building has been divided into areas for different functions, following replacing the most worn materials and adding lifts and stairs.

The main structure is used for the permanent exhibition of the art collections on the second floor. The noble residence and the Simoneschi Collection are on the first floor.  

Finally, a more recent section in the basement is dedicated to archaeology and medieval history and an additional space in the attic for various uses. 

A total of 800 square meters there is a ticket made specifically for you. of exhibition space, with meticulous attention to detail thanks to sophisticated hydraulic and mechanical systems (air exchange, temperature control, and so on).

The color of the palace, which bears its name, has been preserved using the “fresco” technique popular during those centuries.

From the variety of Tower of Pisa tickets, choose the perfect one to reveal this famous leaning tower’s charms. 
Whether you want stunning views from the top or a journey through history, a ticket is made specifically for you.


When is Palazzo Blu open?

Palazzo Blu is open from Tuesday through Friday, 10 am to 5 pm, and Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays, 10 am to 8 pm.

The last entry is one hour before the closing time.

Do you need to book in advance to visit Palazzo Blu?

Yes, we recommend purchasing tickets online ahead of time for a memorable experience at Palazzo Blu.

Featured Image: Palazzoblu.it

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