One of Valencia’s most emblematic buildings is the Palace of the Marquis de Dos Aguas, dating from 1760, when the ancestral home of the family Rabassa de Perelló was reformed in Rococo style. At the time, the family held the marquisate and was one of the city’s most important clans. Today, the palace houses the National Ceramics Museum.
A confession. During our first year in Valencia, we lived 45 seconds from the palace, but never once set foot inside. Ridiculous. The palace is incredible, free on the weekends, and one of the must-see highlights for any trip to the city.
I’m not much of a ceramics fan, so the museum exhibits were of little interest to me, though there are some stunning pieces. More engaging were the architecture and beauty of the building itself. Reaching four floors, the palace is huge — much bigger than it looks from the outside. Visitors are allowed to see nearly all of it, from the ballroom, to an awesome smoking room, bedrooms and the kitchen. Really neat.
The most famous aspect of the building, though, is its marble façade, added in 1867. This is probably Valencia’s most photographed doorway (and the poor guard who eternally stands vigilant, its most photographed person). Massive in scale, and with no concern towards subtlety or restraint, the statues do not fail to impress.