Rector's Palace

Dubrovnik, Croatia

One of the most significant monuments of profane architecture on the Croatian coast is the Rector's Palace, former administrative centre of the Dubrovnik Republic. Its style is basically Gothic, with the Renaissance and Baroque reconstructions. In the 15th century the Palace was destroyed twice in gunpowder explosions. Restored by Onofrio della Cava in the late Gothic style after the first explosion in 1435, the Palace got its present-day size with the central atrium and front portico. The capitals were carved in Renaissance style by Pietro di Martino of Milan, whose capital with Aesculapius has been preserved on the right half-column of the portico.

The second gunpowder explosion in 1463 destroyed the western facade of the Palace, and the two famous architects Juraj Dalmatinac and Michelozzo of Florence were engaged in the reconstruction for a short period.Although the design of Michelozzo was unfortunately rejected, his influence in the restoration of the facade and portico, mainly in Renaissance style, can not be denied. After the earthquake of 1667 the atrium was partially reconstructed with an impressive Baroque staircase.

During his one-month mandate the Rector of Dubrovnik lived in the Palace, which also housed the Minor and Major Council hall, the Rectors residence, the courtroom, administration office, prisons, an arsenal and gunpowder store-house. From the Rectors Palace one could enter the Great Council Palace.

Today the Rectors Palace houses the Cultural-historic Department of the Dubrovnik Museum with exhibition halls arranged to display the original setting with antique furniture and objects for daily use, as well as paintings by local and Italian masters.

The Museum also guards a collection of old coins used in the Dubrovnik Republic, a collection of arms and utensils of Domus Christi Pharmacy from the 15th century. Apart from being exceptionally beautiful, the Rectors Palace Atrium has excellent acoustics, and is often used as a concert venue.



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Founded: 15th century
Category: Palaces, manors and town halls in Croatia


4.1/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Andrew Reeves-Hall (6 months ago)
Lovely exterior - a rare original - with an equally impressive central courtyard. Many historical items - like two green men (from the clock tower, which struck the bell on the hour) and even the "octopus". Plenty of paintings and furniture to admire. A (wine cellar?) space is used to display pictures taken during the Homeland war, showing Debrovnik in flames. Thrpuhhput the palace are nifty augmented reality displays: scan the qr code to download the app. I admired the bottle-bottom windows that played with the sunlight. Free admission with the Dubrovnik Pass.
Andreea Marc (7 months ago)
A very nice museum with lots of interesting history and culture. You will enjoy a great time between its walls, especially if you have a city pass. Small minuses: - Some indicators with the order or the road will be nice - The heat inside
Courtney S (8 months ago)
It’s worth a visit especially with the Dubrovnik Pass. Striking building especially at night. Very hot and humid like rest of the town right now, but they have a bathroom, several stories of art and furniture and striking display of photos of the Homeland War in Dubrovnik. Arts events here at night too.
Panagiotis Varelas (9 months ago)
A palace in the old city of Dubrovnik that used to be the seat of the Rector of the republic. It served also as an armoury and a prison. There is an entrance fee but if you buy the daily Dubrovnik pass this monument is included. Built initially in a Gothic style has also other renaissance elements and from time to time it was partially renovated. During our visit there was also an exhibition near by of paintings and photos of those who fought and died in the war for the city’s freedom 30 years ago. A must see attraction in Dubrovnik.
Atlas (10 months ago)
Beautiful palace in the heart of Dubrovnik old town, which is included in the Dubrovnik pass. Definitely one of the locations you won't want to miss as it's full with beautiful and interesting historical objects and paintings. The architectural aspects of the building are incredibly interesting too, so there's something for everyone to see. One bit I feel gets missed by a lot of people is the dungeon/prison section, which I would recommend trying, even just for a minute. The sense of foreboding I got from just standing there was very intense, definitely not a place you'd want to be locked up!
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