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Roero Bike Tour

The great fortune of the Castle of Monticello is that it was first cared for, then loved, without interruption from 1372 to the present day, crossing, substantially unscathed, a considerable slice of time

Aimone Roero of Monticello

Located a few kilometers from Alba, the Roero di Monticello Castle is one of the most impressive and best preserved medieval buildings in Piedmont. Since 1372 it has been owned by the same family, the Counts Roero di Monticello who have made it their usual residence.
The Castle was built by the Bishops of Asti to defend the borders of the countryside, after the devastating descent of the Saracens on Alba in 920 AD
At the time it was not the building it currently presents: in 1187 it was seriously damaged during a siege and rebuilt in 1348, when the fief of Monticello passed to the Malabaila.
In 1372, the Monticellesi, exasperated by the oppression of their Lords, asked for help from the Counts Roero or Rotarii who, having driven out the Malabaila, received the territories of Monticello and Castagnito as a reward from the Bishop.
In 1787, on the occasion of the wedding of Francesco Gennaro - Viceroy of Sardinia with Paola del Carretto di Gorzegno, radical restorations were carried out without however drastically altering the external medieval structure, eliminating part of the defensive elements, filling the moats and replacing the drawbridge with a stone staircase.
The works mainly involved the interiors with new pictorial decorations according to the eighteenth-century taste and transforming the Castle into a pleasant and elegant country house.
In 1827 Xavier Kurten, already author of the transformations of the Royal Park of Racconigi, redesigned the English park that extends all around the hill.
The Castle is spread over three floors topped by the patrol passage equipped with Ghibelline battlements and machicolations. Rightly referred to as a “typical example of a fortified residence”, it boasts a very unique architectural peculiarity: the presence of three towers, each with different plant and dimensions: a square tower, a round one, and the last octagonal one.
Inside, climbing the stone staircase, you enter the Hall of Arms, where there is a collection of weapons and armor from various eras, adjacent to it, the Chapel dedicated to Santa Barbara, the Teatrino della Frutta and the Cellars. Upstairs you can admire the Sala dei Quadri with the portraits of the Roero family and, on the vault, the coats of arms of the wives of the first-born of the family. Continuing along the route, you cross the Billiard Room and then enter the Sheikh's Chamber. The visit ends with the Gallery of Diana Cacciatrice, a typical example of the Piedmontese eighteenth century, which overlooks the internal courtyard which has, still intact, the ancient structure of the fourteenth century.

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