59013 Montemurlo PO, Italia
Once the fulcrum of a fortified stronghold, the castle stands at the top of Montemurlo hill, peeking out from centuries-old woodland. Since the time of the Guidi family’s dominion, the fortress has conserved its façade, a crenellated tower accentuated by alberese stone masonry (the base can still be seen in the house’s basement).
With a little imagination, visitors can still imagine the drawbridge designed by Giorgio Vasari the Young, replaced by a grand double staircase as part of a series of restorations under the patronage of the Pistoian Gherardi family during the 19th century, which brought the villa to its current aspect.
The last major historical event to take place at the castle was the siege of 1537 after which Montemurlo became a Medici dominion, along with the rest of Tuscany. The castle was stripped of its role as defense base and became the peaceful, distinguished residence it is today.