The Villa Medici at Castello is one of the oldest suburban residences of the Medici family, who came into possession of it in 1477. In 1538 Cosimo I commissioned the sculptor and architect Niccolò Tribolo to lay out a large new garden designed to celebrate the power of the prince through the symbology of its statues, fountains and grottos. Only the garden, which has a wealth of citrus trees and rare plants and is dotted with ancient and Renaissance sculptures, is currently open to the public. There is also a fascinating ‘Grotto of Animals’, once enlivened with dazzling water tricks. The villa itself is occupied by the Accademia della Crusca, which was founded in 1585 to promote and preserve the Italian language. The Accademia still conducts research and consultancy work today.
Source: Florence APT