The origins of this beautiful palace date back to pre-Hispanic times, since it is known that right where the construction is now, was the Palace of Moctezuma Xocoyotzin, an enclosure that unfortunately was destroyed during the Conquest of Tenochtitlán, and instead He built a large palace to serve as the residence of Hernán Cortés.
Later in 1562, the beautiful building was sold to the Crown, by his son Martín Cortés. This was done in order to have new facilities for the administration of the Viceroyalty of New Spain. The first viceroy to inhabit it was Luis de Velasco and the last was Juan O’Donojú who arrived in New Spain when Agustín de Iturbide had just consolidated the Inde
pendence of Mexico in 1821.
Juso in that year, the palace was delivered to Iturbide, who led the first Mexican Empire; Reason why the famous enclosure begins to be called Imperial Palace.
Then, in 1824 Iturbide falls and the Federal Constitution of the United Mexican States is signed. In which it is decreed that all places that had the designation of “imperial” be replaced by “national” and that is how the Palace adopts the name by which it is currently known.
After 40 years of struggles, the venue was designated as the seat of power of the Second Mexican Empire led by Maximilian of Habsburg. And upon its fall, the palace became the residence of the then president Benito Juárez, who died in this place victim of angina pectoris in 1872. For decades, this place was home to many historical figures such as Santa Anna and Guadalupe Victoria; and it is said that the last to inhabit it was Porfirio Díaz.
Currently, this architectural legacy is the seat of the federal executive branch, where various acts are held such as the celebration of the shout, military parades, messages from the presidency and the reception of heads of state, among other events.
Hernán Cortés ordered the destruction of the palace of the governor Moctezuma Xocoyotzin in 1523 and the building of a new palace to house the see of the viceroyalty on the same spot. In the colonial period, it was used as accommodation for the representatives new Spanish power and it was first inhabited by the second Viceroy Luis de Velasco; hence the attention to detail and the palatial style of the building.
At that time it was remodeled to accommodate courtrooms inside and outside the Royal Court prison. Its facade and purpose has changed over time, from 1821 it became the National Palace to house the legislative, executive and judicial powers.
In the first half of the 20th century, Diego Rivera was commissioned to create a mural with the aim of bringing art and history to citizens in an era with high rates of illiteracy. Thus the impressive work Epopeya del Pueblo Mexicano was created, drawn on the two staircases and walls of the north courtyard.
The building houses the site museum of the Parliament. Also, Benito Juarez’s house-museum and the gardens of the Empress were also preserved and, if you look carefully, you can see the ancient pyramids which lie beneath the foundations of the palace.
Phone: +52 (55) 3688 1255
Plaza de la Constitución s/n, Col. Centro.