The headquarters of the Fundación de los Ferrocarriles Españoles (Spanish Railways Foundation) is a beautiful and surprising mid-18th-century palace located in the heart of Madrid, near the Reina Sofía Museum that many locals have likely passed hundreds of times without realising the wonders the lie behind its doors. Built as a home for Blas Jover (Council secretary for Fernando VI) on a plot of old fields that belonged to the Santa Isabel convent, today its one of the best-preserved palaces in Madrid (as well as one of the city's best-kept secrets). It's changed hands many times, and in the mid-19th century it was expanded to give it a romantic look that it still has today (with the sofas, chandeliers and mirrors), and nowadays you can tour what they call the noble area of the palace. There you'll see rugs and tapestries from the Santa Bárbara Royal Factory (some based on Goya drawings), Murano and Baccarat crystal chandeliers, silks and other decorations that tell you that you're in a true palace. The other part of the palace is called the service area, which was converted into offices for those who work for the railways in 1941. A final bit of history was that during the Spanish Civil War, the Fernán Núñez Palace was seized and held by the Juventudes Socialistas Unificadas (Unified Socialist Youth).
|Venue name:||Palacio Fernán Núñez|
Santa Isabel, 44
|Transport:||Atocha, Antón Martín (M: L1)|
|Price:||Guided tours: €125/groups of up to 25 people|