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Castle Sannazzaro

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The Sannazzaro Castle in Giarole

The castle of Giarole was built following a diploma given by the emperor Federico Barbarossa to 4 knights of the Sannazzaro family on December 4, 1163 in which, among other privileges, he granted them to build a castle wherever they wanted in their possessions.

It is located on the plain at the eastern limits of Monferrato, a few kilometers from Casale Monferrato in an area between hills full of vineyards and pretty medieval villages and the Po.

Over the centuries it has been remodeled to be transformed from a defense castle into a country residence. However, it still maintains its original structure with three of the four corner towers, a moat and traces of the entrance drawbridge.

In the eighteenth century the southern wing was redecorated, while the western and northern wing was the subject of an important restoration and redecoration in the period between the 1854 and the 1857.

This last part was frescoed by Turin painters such as Grosso and Morgari according to the neo-Gothic and neo-Renaissance style in vogue at that time. Of particular interest are also the wallpapers of the bedrooms which date back to the mid-nineteenth century, the overhead doors of the ballroom and some living rooms.

Over the centuries it has hosted the Palaeologus of the Marquis of Monferrato in the 1300 and 1400, the Gonzagas in the 1500 and 1600, the King Carlo Emanuele III with the future son Vittorio Amedeo III in the 1745 and the King Vittorio Emanuele II and the Emperor Napoleon III in May of 1859.

In 1911, Prince Emanuele Filiberto of Savoy, Duke of Aosta, was a guest of Count Giambattista Sannazzaro Natta HR during the military maneuvers in Monferrato.

The castle has always been owned by the Sannazzaro family who still resides there.


The construction of the Castle was conceived thanks to a diploma from the Emperor Federico Barbarossa to Guido, Burgundio, Assalito and Raineri, knights of Sannazzaro in which he authorized them to build a castle wherever they wanted in their possessions.

Further documentation certifies the existence of the Castle starting from the end of the 1200s-beginning of the 1300s. Transformed several times in various periods, it became a country residence in the 1854th century. In 57-XNUMX the western and northern wing was redecorated and restored according to the neo-Gothic style then prevailing with important scenographic and decorative results.

It has always been owned by the Sannazzaro family who still live there.

Also in 1854-57, Count Giacinto Sannazzaro Natta had the entrance hall, the main staircase, the ballroom and the bedrooms restored in neo-Gothic (and neo-Renaissance) style. In that context many talented Piedmontese artists and painters worked for Giarole.

A valuable painter, Grosso died falling while he frescoed the ballroom. It is said that his ghost wanders in the rooms of the castle and it is probably he who turns on the lights in the most unexpected corners, and not only ... (watch out for the tower!).

Guided tour

The visit starts from the 2020th century church of San Giacomo which houses XNUMXth century paintings and frescoes, continues with the entrance and the internal courtyard which leads to the large entrance hall with its neo-Gothic frescoes. The entrance hall leads to the archive which was recently rearranged (April XNUMX), followed by the late eighteenth-century music room full of objects and family heirlooms. Going up the main staircase, which is also neo-Gothic, you enter the antisalone and the ballroom.