Palazzo Biscari

Palazzo Biscari is the most important private palace in Catania.

The palace is accessible through a large portal on via Museo Biscari, which leads to the inner courtyard, adorned with a large double staircase. Inside the palace, the ballroom, in Rococo style which shows a complex decor of mirrors, stuccoes and frescoes painted by Matteo Desirato and Sebastiano Lo Monaco. The central dome used to host the orchestra, and is covered by a fresco depicting the glory of the Paternò Castello family of Biscari. A wonderful stucco staircase, which Prince Ignazio used to call ” a flake of a cloud” connects the dome to the gallery overlooking the harbour. Worth mentioning are also the “ The Hall of Feuds” with large paintings depicting the numerous feuds of the Biscari family, the “Apartments of the Princess”, with wood panelling of inlaid wood and marble floors of the Roman era, the “Gallery of Birds” and the “Room of Don Quixote”. The museum is also very important as it used to host the largest archaeological collection of Ignatius V a great scholar, archaeologist and art lover. (now part of the City Museum in the Ursino Castle),

Among the famous visitors to the palace we remember the writer Johann Wolfgang Goethe who, during his trip to Italy, was received by the Prince of Biscari on May 3, 1787, shortly after the death of his father Ignatius.

In early 2008 the palace was used by the English band Coldplay as a set for the video of their song “Violet Hill”