Via Balbi

On the initiative of Stefano Balbi, in around 1602 began the construction of the Strada delli Signori Balbi – the present day Via Balbi. This new road, modelled on the highly successful Strada Nuova, offered both a new access route to the West of the city, connecting it directly with the old town centre, and an excellent opportunity for the entrepreneurial family to promote themselves. Thus their fortunes, made through the skilful trading of silk, velvet, wool and mercury as well as the enlightened business of international banking, ensured them the opportunity to be publicly honoured, through a work of town planning that would prove to be essential for the future development of the city.
The sequence of Balbi buildings along the street is still evident today, and among its magnificent examples, the Palazzo Reale stands out in terms of its size, the layout of its spaces, and the wealth of its collections, offering a truly formidable example of a noble residence enriched over time.