Italian architect and architectural historian. He studied at the University of Rome, graduating in architecture in 1957 and in art history in 1958. He taught for several years at the University of Milan, and from 1980 he was professor of architectural history at the University of Rome. Portoghesi became known as the creator of the original and significant Casa Baldi (1959) on the Via Flaminia, north of Rome. In it he combined a modern open plan with neo-Baroque and De Stijl elements, using the traditional Roman building material, tufa.
His aim was to relate the house to the site and context, although he also emphasized that the solution represented something more than a local phenomenon and should illustrate the possibility of developing a new architectural language. In 1964 Portoghesi went into partnership with Vittorio Gigliotti and designed the Casa Andreis (1964-7) and Casa Papanice (1969-70). His next works included the mosque and Islamic Cultural Centre in Rome, a commission that Portoghesi and Gigliotti won in an international competition in 1976. The building is a synthesis of Islamic, Roman and modern features.