The palace was built in 1839 at the behest of the merchant Nicolò Stratti, who entrusted the project to the architect Antonio Buttazzoni, one of the most appreciated designers in the city at the time.
In 1846, due to some economic difficulties, Stratti was forced to sell the building to Assicurazioni Generali, the current owner. In the same period, the historic Caffè degli Specchi was inaugurated on the ground floor of the building.
In the following decades, the Neoclassical aspect of the building was modified by the restorations carried out by the architects Andrea Seu, Eugenio Geiringer and Giovanni Righetti. Andrea Seu made changes to the facades, inserting pilasters and giving them a more symmetrical appearance, by raising the side bodies and changing the position of the balconies.
In 1872, Geiringer and Righetti made a series of changes to the facade overlooking Piazza Unità d’Italia, which became more important in the context of the urban transformation of the square in the second part of the 19th century.
ART AND ARCHITECTURE
The building is characterized by a rectangular plan with a small internal courtyard. The facades on Piazza Unità d’Italia, Passo di Piazza Antonio Fonda Savio and Via del Teatro show a central body of five floors and two side bodies raised by one floor, while adjacent to the fourth side is Palazzo Model.
The appearance of the main facade, on piazza Unità d’Italia, is the result of the changes made by Eugenio Geiringer and Giovanni Righetti in 1872. On the second and third floors, the presence of the lateral bodies is accentuated by four fluted pilasters culminating with Ionic capitals, while on the upper floor the pilasters give way to floral decorations.
A festoon decoration is also present in the crowning frame of the fifth floor. On top of the lateral bodies, in the spaces between the windows, there are four statues depicting classical divinities. Both the central body and the lateral ones are crowned by a marble balustrade that takes up the motif of the balconies located on the second floor.
At the top of the central body, there is a sculptural group by the Venetian sculptor Luigi Zandomeneghi, which was originally commissioned by Antonio Buttazzoni for the facade on the Passo di Piazza. The sculpture depicts a large female figure representing Trieste surrounded by allegories of Fortune and Progress. Under the sculptural group, the inscription Assicurazioni Generali recalls the acquisition of the building by the insurance company.
Inside the palace, there are two bas-reliefs by Antonio Canova, depicting two classic episodes: The Tragic Death of Priam by the son of Achilles, Neoptolemus, in contrast with the joyful Dance of the sons of Alcinoo.
HOW TO GET THERE
Palazzo Stratti is located about 900 meters away from the Trieste Centrale railway station. The closest bus stop is in Riva Caduti per l’italianita di Trieste, about 120 meters away, on the bus Lines 8, 9, 17, 24 and 30.