Visit: La Sebastiana, Ricardo De Ferrari 692, Valparaiso 2381661 Chile
he poet went to see the building. He liked, among other things, the silly way it was constructed, but he found it too big, so the house was bought between Neruda and the sculptor Marie Martner and her husband, Dr. Francisco Velasco. The last ones kept the basement, backyard and the two lower floors, while Neruda took possession of the third and fourth floors and the tower. “I loose - he use to say joking- I bought just stairs and the terraces”. The truth is that he had a privileged view over the bay.
The poet took three years to finish with the construction and the interior design of the house. He decorated the house with old pictures of the port and a great portrait of Walt Whitman.
Some of the windows of the house were done like ship’s skylights. The largest terrace was converted in a dinning room. From there he could hear the resounding bands of the movies at the Mauri Teather, located next to the house.
The house was inaugurated with a memorable party on September 18th, 1961.Each person invited was included in a “list for unforgettable merits” which showed the help each one contributed to transform that abandoned frame into “The Sebastiana”, as Neruda named it in honor to its first owner and constructor. For that occasion Neruda wrote the poem “La Sebastiana” which was later included in the book "Full Empowerment".
In the house are preserved collections of old maps, of marines and other paintings, among them a portrait of Lord Cochrane and an oleo that shows Jose Miguel Carrera just before being executed. There are many other relics from the port and curious pieces, like music boxes and an old merry-go-round horse, carved in wood.