Residence Casa de la Val (House of the Valleys), is the main attraction of the Barri Antique area, in the city of Andorra la Vella. This unique structure was built on three floors in 1580 and belonged to a noble family. Then, over the years, the building passed from hand to hand, was repeatedly completed and rebuilt. In 1702, its appearance took on complete forms, and the building exists as the Palace of the Parliament of Andorra.
Description of the palace
Since 1761, the Palace of Parliament becomes the official seat of the Andorran government. Here, in addition to the seat of parliament, there was also a prison, a court, a hotel and the chapel of San Ermengol. This multifunctional use was the only one in the world.
By the way, the prison was privileged, and not every violator had the right to sit in it.
The exterior of the Casa de la Val residence is rather austere and austere. It gives the impression of a small medieval fortress or fortified castle. The walls are built of solid and almost untreated gray stone. Decor elements are completely absent. On one side, the building is adjoined by a rectangular tower with a sharp roof - this is both a sentry post and a dovecote.
Carrier pigeons used to be the only communication method in mountainous Andorra. In the chapel of the House of the Valleys, the coat of arms and flag of the Principality of Andorra is kept. In the garden in front of the old parliament, there is a sculpture by the sculptor Francis Vilodomat, depicting a national dance.
The interior of the Casa de la Val is as austere as the medieval stone walls. Inside, simple wooden benches are installed around the perimeter. In the main hall, ancient frescoes dating back to the 16th century are of interest. Copper candlesticks, in which candles are still lit, reinforce the impression of the harsh Middle Ages even more. The surroundings are preserved not only for the pleasure of tourists. Thus, the indigenous Andorrans carefully preserve their ancient traditions.
On the ground floor, there is the Hall of Justice, the only court in the country. The first floor with the Hall of Justice is shared by the Church of San Ermengol. The Council Hall is located on the second floor, where meetings were held before the construction of the new parliament building. On the same floor, the Postal Museum is still operating today, where a philatelic collection is exhibited. Several tens of thousands of tourists visit this museum a year. A visit to Casa de la Val is the best opportunity to get acquainted with the history of Andorra, the peculiarities of its judicial and legal systems.
The parliament works from May to October from Tuesday to Saturday from 10.00 to 18.00, from November to April from 10.00 to 18.00.
Address: Carrer de la Vall, 28, Andorra la Vella.