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Urban Center or S. Domenico.

Urban Center or S. Domenico in Ravenna. Hotels near San Domenico .


Photo: 1)the façade of San Domenico,2)San Domenico, a sight from Costa Square, 3)San Domenico, the back with the campanile
4)San Domenico, inside as exhibition area, 5)San Domenico, a sight from Hotel Centrale Byron


The church of San Domenico in Ravenna, located in Cavour Street, is one of the most imposing buildings of the old town centre.


It is today deconsecrated and is used as an exhibition area called the Urban Center.


It was built, together with the Dominican monastery in  the  centre of the Medieval city, in the guaita di San Michele in Africisco, the left side overlooking the banks of the Padenna canal, which flowed between the current via Matteotti and via IV Novembre (where our Hotel Centrale Byron is located).

The two main mendicant orders , Franciscans and Dominicans, spread in Ravenna in the  13th century. Their presence being favoured by archbishop Filippo da Pistoia (1250-70), who was a leading personality  and skilled  politician, who was determined to see the city once again under the control of the Pope, following a period under imperial rule following the siege of Frederick II in 1240.


The  preaching monks  established themselves in 1269, two years after the burial of the remains of the founder, Saint Domenico, in the church of the same name in Bologna. The monastery also featured a school of theology for novices and an extensive library.

The church  was radically renovated in the 18th century, which transformed the interior in particular. The unfinished severe façade still conserves traces of ogival arches where the tombs were located . The remains of the paintings in the vestry and in the bell-tower chapel, dating back to the Medieval era.


During this period also restoration, extension and decorative work was also undertaken on the churches of Santa Chiara, San Francesco, San Giovanni Evangelista, Sant'Agata Maggiore and San Nicolò, as well as on that of Santa Maria, in the present day Porto Fuori area. Although it was no organized urban renewal programme, under the domination of the Da Polenta family, the city was given a new look and the painting sphere flourished.


The Polentani reinforced the laws, already present in former statues, that  forbade the destruction of old buildings and churches, and which sought to improve its building heritage. They made sure that furnaces were always in operation for brick production.  the exportation of bricks, tiles, mortar, timber and all building materials was forbidden; in order to reduce the risk of fires, they had the traditional roof coverings made of swamp straw replaced with more sturdy tiles.


Prof. Gianni Morelli


The pleasure of fine accommodation in the centre of Ravenna: we recommend the Fabbri hotels for a pleasant stay as follows:

The Centrale Byron hotel, 3-star, close to Urban Center or S. Domenico ;

The Bisanzio Hotel, 4-star, near to Urban Center or S. Domenico ;

Once you have reached the hotel and parked your car, forget it and walk everywhere, because everything is within walking distance.

The railway station is near our hotels and within walking distance of them.

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Our Clients can reach our Hotels, in the center of Ravenna, by car, just in front of the hotel.