World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Carondelet Palace

Article Id: WHEBN0021604279
Reproduction Date:

Title: Carondelet Palace  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Spanish Colonial architecture, Palacio de los López, Politics of Ecuador, 2010 Ecuador crisis, Casa de Nariño
Collection:
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Publication
Date:
 

Carondelet Palace

Carondelet Palace
Palacio de Carondelet (Spanish)
General information
Type Palace
Architectural style French renaissance, Spanish baroque
Location Quito, Ecuador
Address García Moreno st. and Chile rd.
Coordinates
Elevation 2,820 m (9,252 ft)
Current tenants President of Ecuador
Construction started 1801
Client Barón Francisco Luis Héctor de Carondelet
Owner Ecuadorian government

Carondelet Palace (Spanish: Palacio de Carondelet) is the seat of government of the Republic of Ecuador, located in Quito. Access is by the public space known as Independence Square or Plaza Grande (colloquial name), around which are also the Archbishop's Palace, Municipal Palace, Hotel Plaza Grande, and Metropolitan Cathedral.

History

The history of this emblematic building dates back to colonial times, around 1570, with the acquisition of the former royal houses located in the city of Quito.

First Royal Houses

The first seat of the Spanish Crown in the Royal Audience of Quito functioned near the convent of La Merced (current Cuenca and Chile streets) until around the year 1611, when dies Diego Suarez de Figueroa, secretary of the audience, who owned a small palace built in the central square (Plaza Grande).

Juan Fernandez de Recalde, president of the Audience then informed the king that the building was finished, and it was purchased by the Crown as a larger building to house the comfortable premises of the Spanish Administration in Quito soil.

Some time later, the successor to President Recalde, Antonio de Morga, informed the king that the royal houses were unworthy to carry that name, because they were close and very old, so they proposed to buy the adjacent houses. The earthquake of 1627 forced them to buy the neighboring buildings that, because of their age, were rebuilt in stone and brick. Thereafter, the power of the audience settled in front of the Plaza Grande.

The New Palace

Carondelet Palace during the mid-19th century after the March Revolution. Oil painting by Rafael Salas.

In 1799, the Barón Francisco Luis Héctor de Carondelet was appointed chairman of the hearing. In 1801, the Spanish engaged to Antonio Garcia, under his direction, perform work of rehabilitation and improvements, both at the Palace of the audience at the Cathedral as well; also led the work on the arches of the sewers and the renovation of the Prison building.

After the independence of Ecuador culminated with the Battle of Pichincha in 1822, the palace became the headquarters of the South Department of Gran Colombia, receiving the liberator Simón Bolívar sometimes, who wondered at the elegance and austerity of the building in addition to being delighted with the taste of the Baron of Carondelet (main thrust of the work); thus, Bolivar gave the building the name of Carondelet Palace.

The Republican Carondelet

The Yellow Hall or President's Hall.

During the Republican era, almost all the presidents (constitutional, internees and dictators) have dispatched from this building, which is the seat of Government of the Republic of Ecuador.

There has been some changes over the years, the most important in the presidencies of Gabriel García Moreno, Camilo Ponce Enríquez and Sixto Durán Ballén.

In addition to the administrative units in the third level of the Palace is the presidential residence, a luxurious colonial-style apartment in which the President and his family live.

Currently, the Presidency and Vice Presidency of the Republic and the Ministry of the Interior, occupy the Complex of Carondelet, which includes the buildings of the former Mail (current Benalcázar street, between Chile and Espejo) and the Government Palace, separated by the garage.

Opening to the Public

During the presidency of Rafael Correa, the Ecuadorian government, considering the Carondelet Palace and its agencies an Ecuadorian cultural heritage, converted the presidential compound into a museum open to the public.

Designated areas were organized to house objects within their cultural contexts, allotting several rooms and spaces within the palace, so as to make them publicly accessible.

To carry out this work, Maria del Carmen Molestina, researcher, PhD in Archaeology, and former director of the Museum of the Central Bank of Ecuador, cataloged objects and identified places to exhibit the gifts that the president receives while in office. Furthermore, she located objects and antique furniture with cultural value from within the palace to be placed in the exhibition gallery.

Under this system, it now became possible to assign to the presidential gifts their corresponding cultural, historical and/or ethnographic value and to identify all objects that represent and embody customs, traditions, ideologies, and forms of thinking of different Ecuadorian ethnic groups.

Plunder of the Palace

According to the researcher, Dr. María del Carmen Molestina, it is amazing how, over the years, the Carondelet Palace has been looted. Most of the furniture and items that can be seen today are new; even some of the bronze fittings from the furniture dating for the time of Garcia Moreno have been replaced by copies of gold-sprayed lead.

The investigation, which Dr. Molestina is currently conducting, is directed at when the so-called looting began. The Carondelet Palace was restored during the presidency of Camilo Ponce Enriquez (1956-1960) and until the presidency of León Febres Cordero (1984-1988), all was as it should have been. From that period there is no information about the fate of much of the belongings of the Presidential Palace.

Additionally, Molestina believes that everything was kept until the presidency of Rodrigo Borja (1988-1992) after which Sixto Durán Ballen (1992-1996) ordered a new presidential suite on the third floor of the palace.

References

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.
 


Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.