This is the most representative example in Spain of civil Romanesque architecture. When the original palace was destroyed during the 1117 revolts, Archbishop Xelmírez ordered the construction of a new one, around 1120, on the northern side of the Cathedral. Built in granite ashlar, it has a T-shaped ground plan and consists of two floors and a gallery on the upper part. It is entered from the Plaza del Obradoiro. Dating from the Romanesque period are the kitchens and the refectory or "sala de las limosnas". The construction of this last structure is attributed to Juan Arias, archbishop of Santiago between 1238 and 1266. It is a rectangular area with a ribbed vault, whose ribs stand on consoles with profuse iconographic depictions , interpreted as commemorating some royal event that, supposedly, to place in the palace (guests enjoying a banquet and servants attending them, musicians, etc.).
Declared Historic-Artistic Monument in 1931.