President of Malta George Vella commended the professional work being done at the Presidential Palace in Valletta and thanked everyone involved in the restoration project led by Heritage Malta. “I think it was fitting to do our utmost to restore this palace, a national treasure, back to what it was”, said the President.
Accompanied by the Minister for the National Heritage, the Arts and Local Government Owen Bonnici, President Vella visited, amongst others, the works in the Aviary, the hall where the Grand Masters kept exotic birds and which until a few years ago was divided into many rooms, which also included the Speaker’s office. The architect in charge, David Zahra, explained to the President that the soffit, painted by Niccolò Nasoni between 1723 and 1725, had been re-installed in this hall after it had been removed from its place in the Second World War and was never re-installed.
President Vella also visited the works in the original Palace Armoury which are at an advanced stage. Work is currently underway on the flooring and soffit following the completion of the restoration of the walls’ colour scheme. The President stated that he was impressed with the amount of material found and that has regained its place in the Palace and hoped that the people will enjoy this project. “Everything was done in the best interest of the building in order to restore the importance of this palace in the history of our country”, added President Vella.