1. Guided Tour of Rolli Palaces UNESCO Site, Genoa
Visit the wonderful Genoese residences of the XVI century and join this guided tour of the Rolli Palaces, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. A guided tour of some of the most sumptuous residences built by the aristocratic Genoese families during the so-called “ Secolo d’Oro“ (“The Golden Century”), between the 16th and 17th century. The System of the "Palazzi dei Rolli" includes splendid palaces with open staircases, courtyards and loggias overlooking gardens. The palaces, positioned at different levels, were part of a network of public hospitality houses for state visits, as decreed by the Senate of the Republic of Genoa in 1576. The “Rolli” (named from the parchment rolls in which the palaces were inscribed) were subdivided into three “bussoli”, balloting lists, where the palaces were registered according to their richness and dimension. Lots were drawn to decide which palace would have the privilege - and the duty - of playing host to visiting state dignitaries. The first “bussolo” was for cardinals, princes and viceroys, the second for large scale landowners and third for princes of lesser standing and ambassadors: the first example of hôtellerie in Europe. The “Rolli” were declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2006. These exclusive and elegantly decorated residences did not escape the eye of a fine artist as the great Flemish painter Rubens, who at the beginning of the 17th century published a book collecting the drawings of these buildings as a residential model for the Antwerp nobility. Experience a piece of Italy's extravagant Golden Century in Genoa.