Palazzo dei Governanti

Built under the Spanish Stato dei Presidi, this building always takes my breath away. How can you not be amazed by a building so beautiful in a city so unassuming?

Not that Orbetello is unassuming, it’s just that it’s so quaint that you’d never expect to see a building like this here. It looks like it belongs in Florence or Siena.

Then again, the building was built for the Spanish governors of Orbetello. They were expected to live in only the best and most luxurious residence, and architects didn’t disappoint them here.

Today this palazzo is the heart of Orbetello. Locals meet here to have a chat and a coffee… or a gelato in summer.

Restaurants set up tables in the piazza for those who want to watch the comings and goings of the city while they eat.

Tourists stop here to admire the building before continuing their stroll down the main shopping strip, Corso Italia.

But among all the grandiose stonework and beautiful detailing, my favourite part of the building is the ancient clock tower that rises far above Orbetello’s skyline.