Fondazione Marini Clarelli Santi

Region: Umbria

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The Marini Clarelli Santi Foundation is a captivating house-museum located in the heart of Perugia that offers visitors a glimpse into the opulence and splendour of exquisitely preserved furnishings and collections. Once belonging to one of the most prestigious families in Perugia, Palazzo degli Oddi, now named the Fondazione Marini Clarelli Santi, opens its doors to the public, revealing the grandeur of a noble dwelling that bears witness to more than three centuries of history.

Located in the medieval district of Porta Santa Susanna, this building boasts an elegant and solemn 18th-century façade right at the beginning of Via dei Priori, which used to serve as the royal entrance to the historic centre, adjacent to the square formerly known as 'degli Oddi’. The spacious sixteenth-century hall on the ground floor, which still preserves its painted coffered ceiling and original terracotta floor, is adorned with frescoes that depict the illustrious achievements of the Oddi family, interspersed with mannerist representations of Muses and Virtues in harmonious compositions. Beyond the loggia, it is possible to admire the stunning 18th-century garden, which offers a breath-taking view of the Perugian landscape.

On the main ‘piano nobile’ floor, a second reception hall, originally a ballroom, is frescoed with noble coats of arms and houses period furniture and 17th- and 18th-century paintings, evidence of a collection that was established as early as the 1600s, including remarkable examples of art from central and northern Italy, including works by Luigi Scaramuccia and Francesco del Cairo.

The Appartamento della Signora or ‘Lady's Apartment’, with its three rooms inaugurated in the mid-eighteenth century, contains a series of canvases by iconoclastic painters, as well as original furnishings and belongings that recount the history and stories of the people who have inhabited the residence. Family portraits wink at the visitor, while antique board games and furnishings evoke the lives that have unfolded in these noble chambers.

The small study, which belonged to Maria Vittoria degli Oddi and which still features its original flooring and burgundy silk wall coverings, was the haven to which the cultured ‘Marchesa’ retreated to devote herself to her studies. Her writings, votive paintings, majolica tiles, chinoiserie and 19th-century wooden furniture all bear witness to her former presence. The widow's bedroom is fitted out with a display of accessories, everyday objects, clothing and family photographs from the early 1900s. On the walls hang paintings from the 16th and 17th centuries, including a contemporary copy of Titian's ‘Danae’.

Time has stood still at Palazzo degli Oddi, making it a perfect setting for a romantic and fascinating journey into the past.




Palazzo degli Oddi, later known as Marini Clarelli and now a House Museum, stands in the heart of the city at no. 84, Via dei Priori, on the side of the square that was called 'Piazza degli Oddi' until the end of the 19th century.

The building is located in the district of Porta Santa Susanna, in the area where the family's residences already existed in medieval times, in one of the five 'royal roads' that radiated out from Piazza Grande at that time.

The Palazzo was constructed in the mid-sixteenth century, following the acquisition of an additional 'domus' with a tower and a vegetable garden by Guido degli Oddi in 1444, which facilitated its development. This 15th-century residence was integrated into a larger construction project that likely commenced in the latter half of the 16th century. This construction can be linked to the alliance formed between the Guelphs of the Oddi family and Pope Paul III Farnese during the Salt War.

All that remains of the 16th-century palazzo is the ground floor hall, with its 16th-century terracotta floor and coffered ceiling, elegantly painted in the early 17th century with a series of frescoes attributed by Francesco Santi to Silla Piccinini and Pietro Rancanelli.

The large 17th-century hall, the old structures of the previous late Renaissance building and the remains of medieval dwellings were then unified in the late 18th century with the extension of the Palazzo and the construction of the main façade, completed in 1768. The enlargement carried out in the second half of the 18th century saw the height of the building increased with the addition of a lowered floor for use by the servants and its widening towards the square, which until the late 19th century was called 'Piazza degli Oddi’, and the addition of a number of rooms, plus expansion towards the Church of Santa Teresa dei Padri Scalzi.

The period of the 'nova fabbrica' of Palazzo degli Oddi also saw the creation of a garden, which was transformed from a 'small, uncovered and shapeless place' into a true Italian-style hanging garden. The residence was inhabited by the Oddi family and then, after the marriage of Maria Vittoria to Luigi Marini Clarelli, by the Marini Clarelli family until the mid-20th century.

Passed down through inheritance to Barbara Marini Clarelli, it was she oversaw the restoration of some rooms, including the ground floor hall, in the 1990s. The Marquise's testamentary bequest in 2007 has made it possible for the building to be visited by the public as a House Museum, managed by the Fondazione Marini Clarelli Santi.


The Palazzo can be visited on Mondays from 4.00 p.m. to 5.30 p.m., and on Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays from 10.30 a.m. to 12.30 p.m. Opening hours at different times can be arranged upon prior reservation for groups or special requirements. The guided tours are conducted in Italian and English and are free of charge, with a voluntary donation.

The Palace has a large frescoed hall in which it is possible to organise events and book presentations, as well as several adjoining rooms that can be used for refreshments or temporary exhibitions.

Other residence in the region

Offering the same facilities and services


Pets allowed
External use
Internal use
Garden use
Event salons:1
Numbers of seats for events:80