The summer months are firmly behind us, but there are plenty of reasons to visit the historical Italian city of Genoa throughout all seasons of the year. Here, the City of Genoa lists the new openings, a selection of must see events and the city’s exceptional cultural heritage that can be enjoyed this autumn and winter:
Villa Durazzo Pallavicini
Visitors to Genoa this autumn will be able to enjoy the stunning Villa Durazzo Pallavicini that reopened in late September after closing in 2013 for restoration work. The botanical garden was built in 1794 and is also home to the Museum of Ligurian Archaeology. Over eight hectares in size the garden overlooks the city, offering panoramic views from Portofino’s mountain to Capo Noli. It can be reached by train or bus from the city centre and entry is available from €10. For more information, please see here.
The Duchess’ Rooms – Strada Nuova Museum
Those planning on a city break in the next few months will also be able to enjoy a new section of the Palazzo Rosso. Guests can enjoy the refurbished stanze della duchessa, the ‘Duchess’ Rooms’, which include furniture, sculptures and paintings commissioned by the last heirs of Brignole-Sale family in the 19th century. The rooms opened in September and offer a fascinating insight into the Genoese aristocracy’s lifestyle and culture. The Palazzo Rosso is part of the Strada Nuova Museum
Network that also includes Palazzo Bianco and Palazzo Tursi. Travellers can visit all three palaces in one visit, exploring the history of the Brignole-Sale and Grimaldi families.
Events – Autumn/Winter 2017
Palazzo Ducale Exhibitions (September to February 2017)
The Palazzo Ducale is one of the city’s most prestigious symbols and the cultural beating heart of Genoa. This autumn it hosts two exhibitions focusing on some of the most influential art and photography from the 20th century – ‘Andy Warhol Pop Society’ and ‘Helmut Newton – White Women, Sleepless Nights, Big Nudes’.
From 21 October – 26 February 2017, the Palazzo Ducale will celebrate the 30th anniversary of Andy Warhol’s death with a tribute exhibition by Luca Beatrice. The exhibition presents 170 pieces of Warhol’s work including paintings, drawings, Polaroids, sculptures, objects from his private collection, museums and public or private foundations – exploring the influence he had on the art and cultural world. Entry price starts from €11. For more information, please see here.
Until the 22 January 2017, the work of admired photographer Helmut Newton will be showcased in the ‘White Women, Sleepless Nights, Big Nudes’ exhibition. The display gathers 200 images from the first three of Newton’s books published in the late 70s, offering surprising and provocative images that dramatically transformed the concept of fashion photography and the revolution of women’s role within western society. Entry price starts from €10. For more information, please see here.
Rolli Weekends 2016 (15-16 October)
Genoa will host the final Rolli Weekend of the year in October, once again offering visitors exclusive access to its incredible palaces. Several of the city’s 42 palaces in the historical centre – collectively known as the ‘Palazzi dei Rolli’ – will have their doors flung open to the public over the weekend. They key event will be the opening of the new halls of the XIX Century on the third floor of Palazzo Rosso, where guests can view furniture and the rooms of the last heirs of the Brignole-Sale family.
Genoa was once Italy’s most powerful republic and its palaces were built by the wealthiest aristocratic families in the 16th century. Due to official ‘rolls’ (scripts) or ‘Rolli’ issued in 1576 about these palaces, they became known as the Rolli Palaces and today have UNESCO World Heritage status due to their historical, economic and aesthetic significance.
Entry to most of the palaces and museums is free over the Rolli Weekend. Guided tours are also available from €6 accompanied by local tourist guides. The dates for the 2017 Rolli Weekends are 1-2 April and 14-15 October. For more information, please see here.
Genoa Science Festival (27 October – 6 November)
The Science Festival returns to Genoa for the fourteenth year with various laboratories, shows, conferences, meetings and special events highlighting the wonders of science and technology. The exhibition offers fun and exciting opportunities for the public to interact with the experiments and try out their science skills
This year’s theme is ‘signs’ with over 280 events taking place including a fascinating workshop on the science of fireworks on 5 November, the science behind Italy’s famous pizza and a free scientific treasure hunt across the city. Prices vary but some activities are free. For more information, please see here.
Ballet and Opera Season (November and December)
Autumn offers a rich cultural programme in Genoa with its ballet and opera season taking place at the Teatro Carlo Felice located on the Piazza De Ferrari. One of the operas of note this season is La Traviata by Giuseppe Verdi (15 – 29 December). La Traviata is based on the novel ‘La Dame aux Camélias’, a semi-autobiographical story by the author Alexandre Dumas describing his brief love affair with a courtesan in mid-19th century France. Opera tickets are available from €29.
Two ballets will also perform in the city this season. Don Quijote (24 – 27 November) will be choreographed by Jose Carlos Martinez and is based on the famous Spanish novel of the same name. Cenerentola (2 – 4 December) is a ballet remake of the classic Cinderella story aimed at a younger audience. Choreographed by Frederic Oliveri, the music was written by Sergei Prokofiev during the Second World War. Ballet tickets are available from €25. For more information, please see here.
Christmas in Genoa
Genoa has built a reputation for its splendid nativity scenes during the festive period and now has several nativity scenes of outstanding national historic and artistic importance. Expect to see nativity scenes of all types and styles located across the city including beaches, woods, churches, museums, parks, medieval alleyways and shopping centres. Those not to be missed include the nativities at the Sanctuary of the Madonnetta, the Museo Luxoro in Nervi and at the Sanctuary of Santa Maria delle Grazie, which overlooks the park of Villa Duchessa di Galliera in Voltri.
Travellers visiting at this time of year should also try pandolce, a sweet bread made with orange blossom water, sultanas, raisins and pine nuts
For more information on visiting Genoa, please visit www.visitgenoa.it.
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