Real Alcázar – Casa de Contratación: Hall of Audiences

Hall of Audiences in the Casa de Contratación section of the Real Alcázar of Seville, Spain

Hall of Audiences

Hall of Audiences
This beautiful hall is one of the two well-preserved halls of the first headquarters of the Casa de Contratación (House of Trade), established in 1503 by Queen Isabella I of Castile to regulate trade in the Americas after the discovery of the New World. This organization had broad powers, including approval of voyages, licensing navigators, collecting taxes, and acting as a court of law to settle trade disputes.

This hall is much more ornate than the Admiral’s Hall, the other well-preserved hall. As you can see from the image, the ceiling is covered with Mudéjar-style decoration. This hall also used to serve as a chapel.

On display in this hall is the altarpiece installed to make it a chapel so that the visitors, especially the navigators who were about to embark on a voyage, could attend a religious service or pray.

On display to the left side of the altarpiece is a replica of La Santa Maria, one of the three ships that sailed from Seville as part of Christopher Columbus’s first voyage across the Atlantic Ocean in 1492.

Situated on the eastern side of the Patio de la Montería and next to the glamorous Pedro I Palace in the Real Alcázar complex, Casa de Contratación is an unremarkable Renaissance-style building. By its appearance, it is hard to imagine that the decisions made here changed the course of history.

Casa de Contratación pages
Admiral’s Hall
Last Moments of Fernando III the Saint, a masterpiece by Virgilio Mattoni
King Louis Philippe I of France
Queen Maria Amelia de Borbón-Dos Sicilias
King Fernando VII of Spain
Hall of Audiences
Model of Santa Maria
Virgin of the Navigators

Seville Pages and Posts
Real Alcázar of Seville: Casa de Contratación (House of Trade)
Real Alcázar of Seville: Pedro I Palace – A masterpiece of Mudéjar art and architecture
Seville Cathedral: An awe-inspiring architectural marvel
Sala Capitular – The Chapter House of the Seville Cathedral
Sacristía Mayor – The Main Sacristy of the Seville Cathedral
La Giralda: A harmonious blend of Moorish and Renaissance architectural styles
Las Setas of Seville – A modern artistic structure in a historical city

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