Santiponce Itálica

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Palace of Las Dueñas

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Built between the 15th and 16th centuries, the Palace of Las Dueñas is named after the disappeared monastery of Santa María de las Dueñas, located on the adjoining site and demolished in 1868. Its origin was the house-palace of the Pineda family, lords of Casa Bermeja, who were one of the lineages of the patricians of Seville. 

Later, the Palace was inherited by Mr Fernando Enríquez de Ribera, II Marquis of Villanueva del Río and father of Antonia Enríquez de Ribera, married in 1612 to Fernando Álvarez de Toledo, future 6th Duke of Alba. As of this date the palace belongs to the House of Alba. In the 19th century, Dueñas turned into a house for neighbours, its halls were compartmentalised with partitions and the coffered ceilings were covered with false ceiling. Curiously, one of the tenants and manager of the Palace was Antonio Machado Álvarez, whose circumstances made possible the birth of one of the greatest Spanish poets, Antonio Machado, in 1875.

In the 20th century, under the leadership of Jacobo Fitz-James, Stuart y Falcó (1878-1953) - 17th Duke of Alba, language academician and ambassador of Spain, Las Dueñas became a meeting place for members of European dynasties and various personalities from the world of culture, politics and international art. During this period, the main courtyard was landscaped and the palatial staircase of the buildings was restored.

This management will be continued by her daughter Cayetana, 18th Duchess of Alba, who will pay special attention to the gardens of the Palacio de Dueñas, acquiring the splendour of the landscape that they now offer to visitors, which can be enjoyed today thanks to the recent opening to the public promoted by the current 19th Duke of Alba, Mr Carlos Fitz-James Stuart.

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