Fodor's Expert Review Palacio de Monterrey
Built in the mid-16th century by Rodrigo Gil de Hontañón and one of the most stunning Renaissance palaces in Spain, this lavish edifice was meant for an illegitimate son of Alonso de Fonseca I. The building is flanked by towers and has an open arcaded gallery running the length of the upper level. Such galleries—often seen on the ground floor of palaces in Italy—were intended to provide privacy for the women of the house and to cool the floor below during the summer. Following years of renovations and much anticipation, the palace finally opened to the public in 2018; tours, which cost €5 per person, are by appointment only (reservations must be made in person at the Plaza Mayor tourist office). Feast your eyes on seldom-before-seen Titians, Coellos, and other masterpieces presided over by the Alba family.