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The Masonic Hall, Valetta, Malta

6 - 7 Marsamxett Street, Valletta, Malta

All of our meetings are held at 6 - 7 Marsamxett Street, Valetta, Malta. This beautiful old building stands at the corner of Marsamxett Street and Saint .Michael's Street. The latter being a narrow ally flanking the south side of the house. It was built about 1650 and was originally known as the "Casa Viani", having presumably been built for a Knight of that name. It is a double - storey building and in the time of the Knights the owner or tenant lived on the upper floor, the `Piano Nobile', while the "round floor, the Pianterreno', was given up to the domestic staff.

Access between the two floors was by a winding staircase at the back of the building, parts of which are still existing. Sometime in the eighteenth century the house was taken over by the Treasury under the rule whereby four-fifths of the property of a deceased Knight was inherited by the Order. When the "Casa Viana" was built, Strada San Michele (now Michael's St.) was a cul-de-sac leading out of the Strada Ponente (now West St.).

It's seaward end was blocked by solid rock. "Casa Viana" was No. 10 Strada San Michele and its main entrance, on the `Piano Nobile' was reached by a flight of steps cut into the rock. The stone surround of the main entrance and the ends of the steps can still be seen from the Outside.

At a date, not known, Strada San Michele was cut through to Strada Marsamscetto, thus leaving the original main entrance in the air. The servants' entrance was converted into a handsome porchway and a staircase was built to give access to the upper floor.

Comparatively little is known about previous occupants of the "Casa Viani", but according to the Order's rent books it was let from 1767 to 1754 to the Commander Fra. Alberto Mirelli and from 1784 to 1798 to Conventual Chaplain Fra. Giovanni Domenico Barbaro.

The Maltese Government rent books show that from 1879 to 1901 the house was the Malta Headquarters of the Eastern Telegraphy Co. After remaining vacant for six years it was leased in 1907 by W.Bro. A.M. Macfarlane, DD, GM. for 25 years as a Masonic Hall, and has been in use as such ever since. Except for a short period during World War II when it was badly damaged by enemy action.

By a Deed signed on 16th July 1952 the Masonic Hall Committee now holds 6 - 7 Marsamxett St. on emphyteusis for 99 years.