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Josefine 08-12-2003 04:50 PM

La Zarzuela Palace, Madrid
3 Attachment(s)

La Zarzuela Palace

During the 17th century, King Felipe IV ordered a small country palace or hunting lodge to be built in a place called La Zarzuela, in the El Pardo woods close to Madrid. Designed by the Royal architects, Gomez de Mora and Carbonell, who represented the sober, early baroque style in Madrid, it comprised a rectangular, slate-roofed building with two lateral arcades. The main feature was the Italianate garden, with fountains at different levels on three terraces, an orchard and a tree nursery.

The palace was to give its name to the Spanish zarzuela, a genre of light theatrical works including both spoken dialogue and song. The earliest works of this type, based on libretti by Calderon de la Barca, were performed between 1657 and 1660.

Carlos IV carried out alterations to the building to adapt it to late 18th century taste, and adorned it with tapestries, porcelain and lamps from the Royal factories as well as furniture and his much-loved clocks, of which he created a magnificent collection.

The palace was seriously damaged during during the Civil War (1936-1939) and required extensive re-building. While retaining the original layout, it was re-designed as the residence for Prince Juan Carlos and, for the first time, was provided with the necessary facilities and services for the life and official functions of the Heir to the Crown.

Their Majesties have lived in the palace since their marriage in 1962. The atmosphere is one of simplicity, comfort and family life.

In addition to being a home, the La Zarzuela Palace is a place of work. It is where Their Majesties receive Heads of State and hold audiences and occasional receptions. The reception areas display furniture and objects from former Royal collections. In the Audience Hall hangs the late 16th century tapestry, "Alexander distributes riches amongst his friends", by Jakob Geubels II and Jan Raes.

trey033 10-01-2003 06:59 PM

Honestly, if I were king of Spain, I'd ask for a bigger house...their home looks like a converted garage. You'd think that with all the official palaces at the disposal of the royal family, the people would have allowed the family to permanently live in a nicer one! The Zarzuela has no architectual merit at all! :innocent:

Just an observation,


rattie21 10-02-2003 10:37 AM

Zarzuela Palace was not originally a palace. Originally it was a hunting lodge.

xicamaluca 10-02-2003 10:49 AM


Originally Posted by trey033
Honestly, if I were king of Spain, I'd ask for a bigger house...their home looks like a converted garage. You'd think that with all the official palaces at the disposal of the royal family, the people would have allowed the family to permanently live in a nicer one! The Zarzuela has no architectual merit at all! :innocent:

If you think a little in what condititions King Juan Carlos acceded to the throne, you would understand why he decided to stay in Zarzuela Palace ;)

paulette 10-06-2003 01:03 PM

That's what I have observed with the current head of the different states. They are living in smaller palaces. I really don't know why? In the case of King Juan Carlos the bigger palace is right in the heart of the city, why not live there or transfer?

xicamaluca 10-06-2003 01:24 PM

Like i told before, when you spoke in the palace that the Kings live you must think in what condition they became Kings of Spain. Were hard moments and the kings didn't want to move to a bigger palace because they didn't want that the people think that they only wanted all the goddies of royalty, fancy palacas, parties, ect. They wanted to show that they wnat to be simple and work to and for Spain ;) .

Like Queen Sofia said in an interview, they never tougth move to the Madrid Royal Palace (a giant palace in the center of Madrid) and that they love very much the Zarzuela Palace, like she said "It's our home" :)

trey033 10-07-2003 03:21 PM

Still it's unfortunate that they don't have better accomodations. As for the way they reclaimed their crown, that's in the past and irrelevant...I would think the Spanish people, in appreciation of the Royal family and just for PR sake, would allow the king to move at least to the Pardo, which is right adjacent to the Zaruela. As for the queen's remark, have you seen the 'palaces' of Greece? Believe me when I say that the Zarzuela is Versailles compared with anything in Athens.

Cristina 1980 06-21-2004 05:34 AM

Does somebody have pictures of the interior of the Zarzuela Palace, or the palaces where the royal family live?

carlota 06-21-2004 08:02 AM

here you have some pics. there are only photos of the official places (where they recieve people), not the private rooms.

these are from the 'sala de actos'.


ILoveCristina 09-29-2004 06:37 AM

How many rooms are there? Is it only a private residence or do they have private appartments inside the residence?

rchainho 09-15-2005 05:04 PM

6 Attachment(s)
pics from from these 3 palaces:

1- zarzuela nd prince's house

2- zarzuela

3- pedralbes (barcelona)

4-6- felipe's house.

lula 09-16-2005 04:43 AM


Originally Posted by rchainho
pics from from these 3 palaces:

1- zarzuela nd prince's house

2- zarzuela

3- pedralbes (barcelona)

4- felipe's house.

I believed that these photos already would not be in the Google and that something would have been done in order that they were eliminating them. When the Spanish press discovered them it was very critical with Google, since the official buildings of the United States were covering them in the air photos, and nevertheless how it is possible to see here the Spanish buildings not. The critique seems to my me to be normal since it is not possible to play with the safety of the Chiefs of State of the countries, if to those of The United States they the same thing is protected for the rest.

lula 09-23-2005 11:08 AM


Originally Posted by Mahoogie
The Palacio Real in Madrid is huge and very spectacular,its just a waste when the royal family cannot occupy the space I think the King and Queen should live there.If I were a Spanish national, I wouldnt mind if our royal family live there, they deserve to be there.It is build for them not just a tourist attraction..and in my opinion the Palacio Real is a better place for receiving Heads of States rather then the smaller and simple Zarzuela palace..I believe the King and Queen love Zarzuela and its their choice to be there, so I respect that..but just my opinion, I hope the succeeding Kings of Spain should use the Palacio Real as their base..The palace is really impressing and something to be proud by the royal family and the spanish people.I think it would be a waste if the royal family cant live there, the fact that it is located at the heart of the Spanish capital city.The King should live and base his office where the seat of the government is.

The Kings went to be lived to La Zarzuela when they were Princes in epoch of Franco, this it was their home since they married and it is normal that they wanted to remain there.They preferred living in a smaller house, where the children would grow more near his parents. In epoch of Franco the Palace also had been used for big celebrations of the dictator and probably for many people it had not been agreeable.

The Royal Palace is an immense Palace and rehabilitating it to turn it had been very expensive. I believe that he was Alfonso XIII who was complaining because the food was never coming warmly given the distance that existed between the kitchens and the dining room. Besides there is in the center of the city what had generated safety problems in a city how Madrid that was living with the threat of ETA's terrorism. La Zarzuela is in Madrid, the house is in a mount and it allows that be surrounded with nature and not close between 4 walls of the center of the city since it would happen in the center of Madrid.

Today in day the Royal Family only uses it for the dinners of show in Chiefs' honor of State and the big national celebrations.
The Spanish we are be very accustomed that the Royal Family lives in La Zarzuela, and besides we are given all by the possibility of enjoying the Royal Palace, and of all his collections of art that are wonderful. The same thing happens with palaces as La Granja or Aranjuez, which today in day belong to National wealth and all the citizens can enjoy them.

Elsa M. 12-01-2005 11:59 AM

The latest photos from the inside of La Zarzuela can be found here:

ldt20 05-23-2006 05:38 PM

Aerial View of the Zarzuela and the Princes of Asturias House. The property on the right is where Felipe and Letizia live.

Heidi P. 05-24-2006 07:13 PM

Both Zarzuela and the Princes of Asturias House are impressive properties. I'd love to tour many of the castles belonging to the SRF.

lula 05-25-2006 05:03 AM

A small fire originates in the surrounding areas of The Zarzuela

MADRID. - A small fire originated in a zone of pastures located in the surrounding areas of the Palace of the Zarzuela, the official residence of the Kings of Spain. The flames were suffocated immediately and only they concerned a zone of bushes.

To the place there moved two endowments of the Firemen's of the Town hall of Madrid, which effective ones collaborated in the tasks of extinction close to the personnel of Zarzuela, as informed emergency Madrid sources .

The flames originated in a zone located between the official residence of Don Juan Carlos and Dona Sofía and the housing where the Prince of Asturias and Dona Letizia resides. The fire only concerned a zone of pasture and bushes near to the Palace of the Zarzuela, placed in the mounts of El Pardo.

From the suburbs of the Palace it was appreciating a dense cloud of smoke that was arising from a zone surrounded with trees. Nevertheless, thanks to the rapid intervention of the personnel of Zarzuela, which at the arrival of the firemen of the capital already almost they had achieved to extinguish the fire, the flames did not manage to reach the wooded zone.

Juanita 05-25-2006 07:51 AM

:eek: :eek: This was casual?? I mean did anyone do that or was just normal?
And was it today?


lula 05-25-2006 07:57 AM


Originally Posted by ...JuAnItA...
:eek: :eek: This was casual?? I mean did anyone do that or was just normal?
And was it today?

They have not said at all any more on the fire, so it must have been small, and without important consequences. The Zarzuela is in a zone of mount and forest, in Spain already it is hot and they can take place fires. I believe that last year also they had another small fire.;)

zarzuela 08-29-2007 09:03 AM

Here's another rare picture of the inside of Zarzuela Palace:

Sheikha Mozah with Queen Sofia of Spain on Flickr - Photo Sharing!

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