The Presidential Palace (in Spanish, Palacio de Carondelet) is located in Quito’s Independence Square and is currently the seat of government of the Republic of Ecuador.
After the Battle of Pichincha in 1822, the palace became the headquarters of the south department of Gran Colombia, a name used today for a short-lived republic that encompassed much of northern South America and part of southern Central America. The palace was later refurbished in the 19th century by Barón Luis Héctor de Carondelet, giving it its current name.
The palace was built in the French Renaissance and Spanish Baroque architectural styles and is now open to tours. In 2007, Ecuador’s president, Rafael Correa, converted part of the palace into a museum for the benefit of the people of Ecuador and visitors.
Highlights of the tour are portraits of past and present presidents of Ecuador, elegant colonial-style meeting rooms, inner courtyards and an area that displays gifts from other nations. Art and historic objects such as furniture are also on display.
The president of Ecuador and his family reside on the third floor.
The palace is open to tours Tuesday through Sunday, and admission is free. Allow about 45 minutes for the tour.