Doriga Palace is an example of a structure built for nobility, half containing a defensive character, and the other half being residential. The original nucleus is a medieval square tower, built in the 14th century, which forms part of the current palace. In the 15 century, a cubic structure was added to the tower. Its present aspect was completed during the early years of the 16th century, centered on the palace section.
In the year 1600, the columns of the lower floor of the patio were constructed, according to the inscription that is conserved in one of them, and the entrance door was opened to the patio. The palace is structured around this courtyard, of slightly rectangular plan, with 12 columns of stone with a smooth texture, which replaced the previous ones of wood. On the capitals, wooden blocks with carved scrolls support the entablature of the open corridor of the main floor. The sill is formed by turned wooden balusters with a row of canecillos under the skirting board. In the front of the main facade, there is a second open corridor of smaller height and with the same decorative characteristics.
The main façade is formed by three bodies: at one end, the tower with four section topped with battlements, and two bodies of three sections whose spans are distributed symmetrically. The entrance door is on the right, and it is formed by a semicircular arch with the shield, framed by a molding forming an alfiz. It emphasizes a small square window on the door, also framed by an alfiz, repeating the same decorative motif.
The building is surrounded by a park, enclosed by a crenellated wall with a cover and flanked by two semicircular bodies, with an arrowslit in the center of each.References:
The Cloth Hall in Kraków dates to the Renaissance and is one of the city's most recognizable icons. It is the central feature of the main market square in the Kraków Old Town (listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1978).
The hall was once a major centre of international trade. Traveling merchants met there to discuss business and to barter. During its golden age in the 15th century, the hall was the source of a variety of exotic imports from the east – spices, silk, leather and wax – while Kraków itself exported textiles, lead, and salt from the Wieliczka Salt Mine.
Kraków was Poland's capital city and was among the largest cities in Europe already from before the time of the Renaissance. However, its decline started with the move of the capital to Warsaw in the very end of the 16th century. The city's decline was hastened by wars and politics leading to the Partitions of Poland at the end of the 18th century. By the time of the architectural restoration proposed for the cloth hall in 1870 under Austrian rule, much of the historic city center was decrepit. A change in political and economic fortunes for the Kingdom of Galicia and Lodomeria ushered in a revival due to newly established Legislative Assembly or Sejm of the Land. The successful renovation of the Cloth Hall, based on design by Tomasz Pryliński and supervised by Mayor Mikołaj Zyblikiewicz, Sejm Marshal, was one of the most notable achievements of this period.
The hall has hosted many distinguished guests over the centuries and is still used to entertain monarchs and dignitaries, such as Charles, Prince of Wales and Emperor Akihito of Japan, who was welcomed here in 2002. In the past, balls were held here, most notably after Prince Józef Poniatowski had briefly liberated the city from the Austrians in 1809. Aside from its history and cultural value, the hall still is still used as a center of commerce.
On the upper floor of the hall is the Sukiennice Museum division of the National Museum, Kraków. It holds the largest permanent exhibit of the 19th-century Polish painting and sculpture, in four grand exhibition halls arranged by historical period and the theme extending into an entire artistic epoch. The museum was upgraded in 2010 with new technical equipment, storerooms, service spaces as well as improved thematic layout for the display.
The Gallery of 19th-Century Polish Art was a major cultural venue from the moment it opened on October 7, 1879. It features late Baroque, Rococo, and Classicist 18th-century portraits and battle scenes by Polish and foreign pre-Romantics.