Auberge d'Italie, Birgu

Auberge d'Italie
Berġa tal-Italja
General information
Status Largely destroyed, some remains survive
Type Auberge
Location Birgu, Malta
Address No. 1–6, St. Lawrence Street
Coordinates 35°53′25.8″N 14°31′11″E / 35.890500°N 14.51972°E / 35.890500; 14.51972
Construction started 1553
Completed 1554
Destroyed 1940s
Technical details
Material Limestone
Design and construction
Architect Niccolò Bellavante

The Auberge d'Italie (Maltese: Berġa tal-Italja, Italian: Albergo d'Italia) was an auberge in Birgu, Malta. It was built in the sixteenth century to house knights of the Order of Saint John from the langue of Italy.

The auberge was located in the northern part of Birgu, close to Fort St. Angelo and far from the collacchio where the other auberges were found. It was built between 1553 and 1554 to a design by Niccolò Bellavante, on the site of an earlier auberge. Part of the building was used as a naval hospital, and it also included a chapel dedicated to St. Catherine of Alexandria.

The auberge remained in use until April 1571, when the Italian knights moved to a larger Auberge d'Italie in the new capital city Valletta. This auberge was later incorporated into the Grandmaster's Palace, and a third Auberge d'Italie was built in 1579.[1] A Church of St. Catherine was also built adjacent to the third auberge.[2]

Auberge d'Italie was included on the Antiquities List of 1925, together with the other auberges in Birgu.[3] The building was severely damaged by aerial bombardment during World War II. The site was rebuilt as housing units between 1961 and 1963, and some features of the auberge were incorporated into the new buildings. These houses are regarded as being of a sub-standard nature.[4]

Today, the only remains of the auberge are a quoin, a partially defaced coat of arms, the base of a balcony, and some mouldings on the façade. These remains were scheduled as a Grade 2 property on 2 December 2009,[5] and they are also listed on the National Inventory of the Cultural Property of the Maltese Islands.[4]


  1. "The Auberge d'Italie". Malta Tourism Authority. Archived from the original on 5 September 2015.
  2. "Church of St. Catherine of the Langue of Italy" (PDF). National Inventory of the Cultural Property of the Maltese Islands. 27 August 2012. Archived from the original (PDF) on 29 December 2014.
  3. "Protection of Antiquities Regulations 21st November, 1932 Government Notice 402 of 1932, as Amended by Government Notices 127 of 1935 and 338 of 1939.". Malta Environment and Planning Authority. Archived from the original on 20 April 2016.
  4. 1 2 "Auberge d'Italie" (PDF). National Inventory of the Cultural Property of the Maltese Islands. 28 December 2012. Archived from the original (PDF) on 5 March 2016.
  5. "Birgu's Auberge d'Italie". Times of Malta. 1 December 2012. Archived from the original on 3 March 2016.

External links

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