Vicenza a city in north-eastern Italy, is the capital of the eponymous province in the Veneto region, at the northern base of the Monte Berico, straddling the Bacchiglione. Vicenza is approximately 60 km west of Venice and 200 km east of Milan. Vicenza is a thriving and cosmopolitan city, with a rich history and culture, and many museums, art galleries, piazzas, villas, churches and elegant Renaissance palazzi.
With the Palladian Villas of the Veneto in the surrounding area, and his renowned Teatro Olimpico (Olympic Theatre), the "city of Palladio" has been enlisted as UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1994. As of December 2008, Vicenza had an estimated population of c. 115,927, and a metropolitan area of 270 000. Vicenza is the third-largest Italian industrial centre as measured by the value of its exports, and is one of the country's wealthiest cities.
Especially due to its textile and steel industries which employ tens of thousands and about one fifth of the country's gold and jewelry is made in Vicenza, greatly contributing to the city's economy. Another important branch is the engineering/computer components industry (Federico Faggin, the microprocessor's co-inventor was born in Vicenza).
Vicentia was settled by the Italic Euganei tribe and then by the Paleo-Veneti tribe in the third and second centuries BC. The Romans allied themselves with the Paleo-Veneti in their fight against the Celtic tribes that populated north-western Italy. The Roman presence in the area grew exponentially over time and the Paleo-Veneti (whose culture mirrored Etruscan and Greek values more so than Celtic ones) were gradually assimilated.
In 1994 UNESCO inscribed "Vicenza, City of Palladio" on its list of World Heritage Sites. In 1996 the site was expanded to include the Palladian villas outside the core area, and accordingly renamed "City of Palladio and the Palladian Villas of the Veneto".
- Santi Felice and Fortunato
- Santi Filippo and Giacomo
- San Lorenzo of the Friars Minor
- San Marco in San Girolamo
- The Torre Bissara (clock tower) (1224–1446), 82mt, is one of the tallest buildings;
- The Biblioteca Civica Bertoliana, public library founded by Count Giovanni M. Bertolo, opened 1708;
- Casa Pigafetta (1440), house of Antonio Pigafetta;
- The Pinacotheca Civica houses mainly Vicentine paintings in the Palladian Palazzo Chiericati.
Vicenza railway station, opened in 1846, forms part of the Milan–Venice railway, and is also a junction of two branch lines, to Schio and Treviso, respectively.
Vicenza is the home of Rosalba Pedrina, a painter, sculptor and art teacher. Her studio and art school are located in the Palazzo da Schio on Corso Palladio.