At the beginning of the colony, the kings of Spain, like the Church, sent their most famous representatives to live in the new continent. When they arrived they chose well located lots to build their houses. Many of them decorate the city with its beautiful majesty. The 4 described below are the most important.
In Inca times in this place was the palace of Inca Roca. After the conquest the palace was partially dismantled to build the colonial house of the Valverde Contreras and Xáraba family, Marqueses de Rocafuerte and is currently the Archbishop's Palace.
It has a stone perimeter wall and inside there is a large Renaissance courtyard with stone arches and tiles on the walls. It is adorned in the middle by a stately pool that is located in a preferential place. It is recognized because among its perimeter walls is the "Stone of the 12 Angles."
In addition to having one of the most emblematic stones of the city of Cusco "the stone of the 12 angles", the Museum of Religious Art houses an important collection of colonial religious paintings. You can also admire its Moorish-style doors, carved cedar ceilings and spectacular stained glass windows.
Office hours: Monday to Sunday from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
The admiral's house, named after the Spanish admiral Francisco Alderete Maldonado, who ordered it to be built at the beginning of the 17th century, is one of the most admirable colonial buildings in the city of Cusco. In its exterior it has an original Inca wall and the Renaissance cover, located in the corner, is among the best in the city. Flanks in the entrance are plateresque and Corinthian columns of striated shaft. Above the door, two stone shields contain the noble weapons of the Alderete and Maldonado.
Throughout the last centuries, this colonial house was occupied by several entities and personalities; it was the seat of the Archbishopric, then ephemeral palace of the last viceroy of Peru and, later, Government House of Marshal Santa Cruz who directed the Peruvian-Bolivian Confederation. Already in the twentieth century it was acquired by the National University San Antonio Abad and, finally, destined to host the Inca Museum.
In the current Inca Museum you can see historical documents, collections of objects from the period before the Incas: ceramics of pre-Inca cultures of Cusco and the country, textile and agricultural tools and instruments of Inca music. Painting and metallic objects of the colonial period.
In the time of the Incas, in the space that the Cabrera House occupies today, the Amaru Cata of the Imperial City (a school or house of knowledge) was located whose remains of the original walls can still be seen in the house's hallway.
In the seventeenth century the house became the property of the marriage constituted by Don Luis Jerónimo de Cabrera and La Cerda and Mrs. Isabel Tordoya y Bazán. Cabrera was Ordinary Mayor of the Cabildo, Justicia y Regimiento del Cusco in 1649. The coat of arms that today shows the cover of the house belongs to the Cabrera family, giving it the name with which it is known today.
In 1981, the Continental Bank acquired the property and carried out restoration work in order to put it in value, rescuing its architectural features.
In 2002, the Continental Bank joins efforts with the Larco Museum in Lima to open the doors of the Museum of Pre-Columbian Art - MAP, in June 2003.
Through a modern museography, it shows the most important collection of ceramics, gold and jewels of the ancient cultures of Peru; Its didactic rooms allow us to know the 3,000 years of the archaeological splendor of our country, including the only and well-known selection of eroticism of ancient Peru.
Opening hours: Monday to Sunday from 9: 00-22: 00 hrs.
House of the Inca Garcilaso de la Vega
This house, originally from the first years of the conquest, was built on an Inca wall and has hybrid features (Spanish-Inca), it must have had a wide and comfortable cover for the transit of horsemen. The property was, with the passage of time, improved to reach the beauty and spaciousness that comforts today.
It is organized around a central courtyard, the center that relates the functions of the house, forming four main pavilions. The rooms open onto the patios and these are related to each other, directly or through corridors. Only the decorative elements vary according to the new style.
This beautiful house is today the "Regional Historical Museum" of the city of Cusco. One of the most visited museums in the city that houses a large collection of relics from the pre-Inca period: ceramics, paint, metals, textiles, etc.