A romantic triumph of elegance

In its seven centuries of history, the Castle of Agliè has welcomed dukes, princes, and kings. Now it is owned by the marquesses of San Martino, and its old, noble past can still be found in the diversity of its apartments and gardens.

Surrounded by a park of centuries-old trees and large greenhouses, the castle has 300 rooms, and a heritage of precious and highly diverse furnishings and collections, including archaeological relics and striking ornithological and oriental items. The Ballroom and the many historic rooms, perfectly preserved, make the castle a triumph of elegance and splendour.

With over three hundred rooms, a magnificent park planted with trees that are centuries’ old, and an incredible art collection comprising everything from archaeological finds to oriental artefacts, Agliè Castle is an absolute must when exploring the beauty of the surroundings of Turin and the past of the House of Savoy. This residence was built in the 1740s on the ruins of an ancient 12th century castle, at the behest of Count Filippo San Martino d’Agliè, a leading politician and lover of Christine of France.
The Hall of Honour, entirely frescoed by Giovanni Paolo Recchi and his workshop to celebrate the medieval events of the first king of Italy, Arduino d’Ivrea, from whom the San Martino family descended, belongs to this phase.
In 1764, the castle was purchased by Carlo Emanuele III of Savoy for his son Benedetto Maurizio, Duke of Chiablese. Over the course of about a decade, architect Ignazio Birago of Borgaro redesigned the entire complex, incorporating it into the village of Agliè. The square was built, along with the parish church, which was connected to the castle by a two-storey covered gallery that still exists today. Inside the residence, the Hunting Hall, a large entrance hall and the castle’s calling card, decorated in 1770 with understated stucco trophies by Giuseppe Bolina, represents a neo-classical modernisation.
Major transformations also took place in the immense grounds, which were landscaped in the French style by Michel Benard, director of the Royal Gardens, with the creation of a circular lake at the end of the park, in line with the longitudinal axis. The scenic Fountain of Rivers located towards the south façade, with sculptural groups by the Collino brothers, is not to be missed.
During the Napoleonic period, the castle was used as a mendicant shelter. Following its return to the House of Savoy in 1823, King Carlo Felice and his wife Maria Cristina of Bourbon commissioned Michele Broda to modernise it. The couple were responsible for the considerable enrichment of the collections. The queen’s passion for antiquities and archaeology can be seen in the numerous exhibits preserved in the Tuscolana Room.
Between 1838 and 1840, alterations were also made to the grounds by the landscape architect Xavier Kurten, in keeping with the new fashion for romantic gardens.
When Maria Cristina died, the castle was inherited by Fernando of Savoy, Duke of Genoa. The diplomatic trip to Asia by Ferdinando’s son, Duke Tomaso, increased the collections with a substantial collection of ethnographic and oriental objets d’art.
During the First World War, Tomaso’s wife, Isabella of Bavaria, decided to set up a small hospital consisting of thirteen rooms for the convalescence of war officers in the oldest part of the castle, overlooking the 17th century Italian garden.
Sold to the State in 1939, the castle became a museum; its works of art and furnishings are still intact today.

Piazza Castello, 1 – Agliè (TO)
+39 0124 330102


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