Royal Palace of Madrid: Interior detail, the Apartments of Charles III, the 'Gasparini Room'
Design by Mattia Gasparini, cabinetwork by Joseph Canops, bronze mounts by Giovanni Battista Ferroni, embroidery by Maria Luisa Bergonzini. The intarsia floor is covered with a rug in this image.
The first royal palace in Madrid was known as the Alcázar. It was initially a fortress built ca. 875 by Muhammed I on a promontory that was soon incorporated into the northwest corner of the city walls. A fire in 1734 destroyed the former palace. The new Palacio Real was built from 1738 to designs by Giovanni Battista Sacchetti, although Filippo Juvarra had produced a more extravagant design (Madrid, Bib. N.), rejected by Philip V as too expensive. The new palace, built on a square ground-plan from Colmenar stone on a granite base, displays Italian and French Neo-classical influences. Sabatini worked on the palace from 1760 to 1778. It is the official residence of the King of Spain in the city of Madrid, but it is now only used for state ceremonies. The last monarch who lived continuously in the palace was Alfonso XIII. The palace also houses the Armería Real (the Royal Armory).