Villa Manin at Passariano was the residence of the last Doge of Venice, Ludovico Manin. Napoleon Bonaparte and Josephine de Beauharnais lived there for about two months in 1797. Here were conducted many interviews for the signing of the treaty between France and Austria known as the Treaty of Campoformio (17 October 1797).
Villa Manin is a monumental architectural complex built in the 16th century at the behest of the noble Friulian Antonio Manin who, at the loss of the dominion of the seas, focused on the resources offered by the mainland, setting up a farm and putting a manor house at his center. The first factory of the villa is dated between 1650 and 1660.
In the following years, the grandchildren Ludovico Manin I and Francesco IV took up the project, perhaps aided by the architect Giuseppe Benone. The original appearance of the 17th-century villa was radically different from the current one, due to the transformations and enlargements in 18th century by Ludovico II and Ludovico III, made first by the Venetian architect Domenico Rossi, and then by Giovanni Ziborghi, who between 1730 and 1740 did raise the barchesse (barn wings). The raising of the noble central core, built with the consulting of Giorgio Massari, was realized after 1745. The large garden (over 17 acres) in the back appears to be due to the will of the 'master of the house' Ziborghi.
Substantial interventions of 19th century, especially by Giannantonio Selva, modified the original garden, giving us today a place complicated by the alterations and replacements of the same tree species.
To the villa complex also belongs the chapel of Sant'Andrea, built 1708 by Domenico Rossi and located outside the square plaza adjoining the barchessa and to the east gate. The building is square with rounded corners. The façade, with gable and two pairs of columns at sides is adorned on the edge of the pediment with statues and marble groups by Pietro Baratta. Inside, in the sacristy, there are two marble altars by Giuseppe Bernardi-Torretti, and in the hall two other marble altars with altarpiece worked in relief by the same Torretti.
As well as a fine piece of architecture, the villa is also important for the 18th-century artworks. The villa is decorated with frescoes by Ludovico Dorigny, Jacopo Amigoni and Pietro Oretti, paintings by Francesco Fontebasso and sculptures by Torretti.
Villa Manin also contains a museum area of considerable interest for the tourist. The permanent exhibitions are a collection of antique carriages in the stables and an extensive armory, with pieces from the Casa della Contadinanza of Udine; many of its 350 rooms have been furnished with antique furniture and paintings from the Museum of Udine, including the so-called 'Chamber of Napoleon', where the famous emperor slept, who here signed the Treaty of Campoformio in 1797.References:
Royal Palace of Naples was one of the four residences near Naples used by the Bourbon Kings during their rule of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies (1734-1860): the others were the palaces of Caserta, Capodimonte overlooking Naples, and the third Portici, on the slopes of Vesuvius.
Construction on the present building was begun in the 17th century by the architect Domenico Fontana. Intended to house the King Philip III of Spain on a visit never fulfilled to this part of his kingdom, instead it initially housed the Viceroy Fernando Ruiz de Castro, count of Lemos. By 1616, the facade had been completed, and by 1620, the interior was frescoed by Battistello Caracciolo, Giovanni Balducci, and Belisario Corenzio. The decoration of the Royal Chapel of Assumption was not completed until 1644 by Antonio Picchiatti.
In 1734, with the arrival of Charles III of Spain to Naples, the palace became the royal residence of the Bourbons. On the occasion of his marriage to Maria Amalia of Saxony in 1738, Francesco De Mura and Domenico Antonio Vaccaro helped remodel the interior. Further modernization took place under Ferdinand I of the Two Sicilies. In 1768, on the occasion of his marriage to Maria Carolina of Austria, under the direction of Ferdinando Fuga, the great hall was rebuilt and the court theater added. During the second half of the 18th century, a 'new wing' was added, which in 1927 became the Vittorio Emanuele III National Library. By the 18th century, the royal residence was moved to Reggia of Caserta, as that inland town was more defensible from naval assault, as well as more distant from the often-rebellious populace of Naples.
During the Napoleonic occupation the palace was enriched by Joachim Murat and his wife, Caroline Bonaparte, with Neoclassic decorations and furnishings. However, a fire in 1837 damaged many rooms, and required restoration from 1838 to 1858 under the direction of Gaetano Genovese. Further additions of a Party Wing and a Belvedere were made in this period. At the corner of the palace with San Carlo Theatre, a new facade was created that obscured the viceroyal palace of Pedro de Toledo.
In 1922, it was decided to transfer here the contents of the National Library. The transfer of library collections was made by 1925.
The library suffered from bombing during World War II and the subsequent military occupation of the building caused serious damage. Today, the palace and adjacent grounds house the famous Teatro San Carlo, the smaller Teatrino di Corte (recently restored), the Biblioteca Nazionale Vittorio Emanuele III, a museum, and offices, including those of the regional tourist board.