Girolamo Rusticucci, secretary of Pope Pius V and later cardinal, bought a building on March 31, 1572. Rusticucci also bought some nearby buildings, with the aim of expanding the original structure.
In 1584, Rusticucci commissioned Domenico Fontana to design a larger palace. After the death of Pope Sixtus V, Fontana was transfered to Naples, and the works were completed by his nephew, Carlo Maderno.
Around 1630, the Nazarene College, one of the oldest schools in Rome, was housed in the palace for a short time. Around the middle of the 17th century, the cardinal’s heirs sold the palace to the Accoramboni family.
In 1667, the construction of the colonnade in Piazza San Pietro by Gian Lorenzo Bernini made it necessary to demolish the last block of houses located in front of the square. Its demolition created a new square, bordered on the north side by Palazzo Rusticucci, which gave it its name.
In the 20th century, the palace became the seat of the Belgian Historical Institute, and then it was occupied by the Congregation of Propaganda Fide.
In 1940, due to the construction of Via della Conciliazione, Palazzo Rusticucci was demolished and partially rebuilt during the same year on a design by Clemente Busiri Vici.
The palace houses Cafe San Pietro, founded in 1775, one of the oldest cafes in Rome.
The palace has the main facade built from exposed bricks. Each of the upper floors have thirteen rectangular windows, while the ground floor has only six windows interspersed with six portals, and the main portal in the center.
HOW TO GET THERE
The closest Metro station is Ottaviano, located about 1 kilometer away, on the Metro Line A. The closest bus stop is Traspontina/Conciliazione, located about 300 meters away, on the bus Lines 23, 40 and 982.
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