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Palace of Fine Arts in Mexico City

Palace of Fine Arts
Credit: Pixabay / Jonathan Ramos
The Palace of Fine Arts in Mexico City is one of the grandest sites among its many attractions. The Palacio de Bellas Artes (Bellas Artes Palace) is located close to the Zocalo and neighbours the Alameda Central Park. This attraction should be on your must-visit list in Mexico City.
The Palace was commissioned by President Porfirio Diaz. It was built to replace the National Theatre which was demolished in 1901. Italian architect Adamo Boari started work on the project in 1904. The initial plan was to complete the project by 1910, to celebrate the centenary of Mexican Independence. However, the construction was initially delayed due to some construction obstacles and was further delayed due to the outbreak of the Mexican Revolution. The Mexican architect, Francisco Mariscal, started work on the project after the end of the revolution. It was inaugurated in the year 1934.

The Palace serves as the main venue for the Ballet Folklorico de Mexico. It also hosts exhibitions and theatrical performances. The Palace also encourages visual arts, music, literature, architecture and dance. It houses two museums within its building. The Museo del Palacio de Bellas Artes (Bellas Artes Palace Museum) features temporary exhibits while the Museo Nacional de Arquitectura (National Architecture Museum) occupies a permanent place at the top floor of the building.

The first and second floor of the building feature epic murals done by some of Mexico's greatest artists such as Diego Rivera, Rufino Tamayo, David Alfaro Siqueiros and Jose Clemente Orozco.

The star highlight of the Palace is the glass curtain in the main theatre. This striking stage glass curtain is a stained-glass foldable panel that features the landscape of the Valley of Mexico with its two great volcanoes, Popocatepetl and Iztacchihuatl.

There is a restaurant and bookstore on the ground floor of the building. The curtain was designed by Dr Atlaka Gerardo Murillo (Mexican artist) and built by Tiffany of New York.

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