Andrea Belli

Andrea Belli
Born 13 October 1703
Died 19 October 1772 (aged 69)
Nationality Maltese
Occupation Architect and businessman
Notable work
Auberge de Castille
Style Baroque
Teresa Gam
(m. 1737)
Children Giuseppe Belli
  • Giuseppe Belli (father)
  • Francesca Romano (mother)

Andrea Belli (13 October 1703 – 19 October 1772) was a Maltese architect and businessman. He designed several Baroque buildings, including Auberge de Castille in Valletta, which is now the Office of the Prime Minister of Malta.

Life and career

He was born in Valletta on 13 October 1703 to the surgeon Giuseppe Belli and his wife Francesca Romano. He spent some time in Venice as a youth, and he later traveled to Austria and (Germany).[1]

Auberge de Castille, Belli's masterpiece
The Mdina Seminary (now the Cathedral Museum), which is attributed to Belli

As an entrepreneur, Belli became a successful businessman by having achieved monopoly from Grand Master Pinto over the export of Maltese limestone and other products to Africa, Asia and Europe.[2]

Belli became an architect, and he designed several buildings in the Baroque style. A possible portrait of him with the design of Casa Manresa (today the Curia of the Bishop) dates to his lifetime.[3]

Under the influence of his brother Gabriele, listener of the Master Mason Pinto,[4][5] Andrea got regular commissioned works by the Order of Malta as designer of the main buildings of the 18th century Maltese Baroque architecture.

Notable buildings made or attributed to him include:[1][6]

Our Lady of Divine Providence Church

Auberge de Castille is regarded as his masterpiece.[1]

Belli was also involved in business, and in 1741 he took over the firm of the Manoel Theatre.[1]

Belli married Teresa Gam on 5 June 1737, and they had one son called Giuseppe.[1]

He died on 19 October 1772 at the age of 69.[1]

Further reading

  • Bonello, Giovanni (April 1996). "Andrea Belli, Baroque Architect, Industrialist, Slave Dealer and Impresario". The Sunday Times.
  • Bonello, Giovanni (2000). Art in Malta – Discoveries and Recoveries. Fondazzjoni Patrimonju Malti. pp. 125–142. ISBN 99909-959-7-4. Archived from the original on 28 August 2016. Retrieved 5 July 2016.


  1. ^ a b c d e f Schiavone, Michael J. (2009). Dictionary of Maltese Biographies Vol. 1 A-F. Pietà: Pubblikazzjonijiet Indipendenza. p. 192. ISBN 9789993291329.
  2. ^ Ellul, Michael (2010). "Malta Limestone goes to Europe: Use of Malta Stone outside Malta". In Joseph F. Grima (ed.). 60th anniversary of the Malta Historical Society: a commemoration. Zabbar: Veritas Press. pp. 371–406. ISBN 978-99932-0-942-3. OCLC 779340904. Archived from the original on 25 March 2019.
  3. ^ Kunkler, Christine Stefanie. "Representation of architects and building projects in seicento and settecento local art, Malta" – via Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  4. ^ Albert Ganado (2001). Palace of the Grand Masters in Valletta. Fondazzjoni Patrimonju Malti. p. 38. ISBN 9789993210122. OCLC 264974877.
  5. ^ Giovanni Bonello (2000). Histories of Malta. 1. Fondazzjoni Patrimonju Malti. p. 161. ISBN 9789993210016. OCLC 48039980.
  6. ^ Gaul, Simon (2007). Malta, Gozo and Comino. New Holland publishers. p. 325. ISBN 9781860113659.
  7. ^ "One World – Protecting the most significant buildings, monuments and features of Valletta (12)". The Times. Malta.
  8. ^ Mifsud, Maria (23 November 2008). Restoring old buildings. The Times (Malta). Archived from the original on 1 April 2016.