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April 4, 2019 – Published in Design & Decor Spring 2019 issue
The Craftsman’s Palace
Words Denis Jin Young Photography Alan Carville
Walking down the gentle slope of St. Christopher Street, while slowly taking in the magnificent view opening up in front of you as you approach the Lower Barrakka Gardens, one reaches this beautifully restored Valletta Palazzo just above the popular and intimate Horza Restaurant.
The Craftsman’s Palace is today a lovingly converted residence, ready to accommodate its first guests after years of perseverance and dedication in creating a truly authentic home, it proudly represents what Malta has to offer to tourists looking for an authentic experience.
As with most renovations, lots of secrets got uncovered as the works progressed. Valletta Boutique Living, the largest investor and short let operator in Valletta proudly features this property through its operating arm; vallettastay.com. However, unlike any other property in the portfolio, The Craftsman’s Palace, is not just a vacation rental, but an opportunity to experience 400 years of history, combined with cultural activities bringing guests closer to a local’s way of life.
The Property comes with a detailed handbook outlining the features seen within the Palazzo, from the traditional Maltese Balcony and Sala Nobile commonly seen in most Valletta Palazzos to the less seen hidden gems like the ‘1617’ date engraved in the stone near the entrance, probably indicating the year of construction. Other interesting features include the rarely used Rose of Rhodes engraved on a door lintel as well as a Gargoyle of a dog’s head, most probably a link to the Dominican Order sometimes referred to as ‘Dogs of the Lord’ (Domini Canes). All this and much more help create an aura around the Palazzo, allowing guests to imagine how it was to live in these beautiful buildings hundreds of years ago.
To compliment the property, Italian and other European pieces were added throughout the Palazzo as well as a fireplace replica from a similar period Palazzo in Tuscany, a 150-year-old bed from Bologna and much more.
Whilst enjoying a lovely dinner in the grand sala nobile or enjoying a prosecco on the spacious roof terrace overlooking the Grand Harbour, the guests will also have the opportunity to be served by Horza’s charming local Chef Patron, Mr. Charles Bone who will passionately explain every ingredient present within his glorious servings. And if the guests would like to be taken for a stroll in the city to enjoy live music and great food, one of our local friends will take them down The Gut, a gastro-retail hub at the lower end of Strait Street.