Castello di Guiglia
A splendid 14th-century fortress, surrounded by a characteristic village, in the province of Modena is the Castle of Guiglia, a manor with an imposing bulk that allows it to be seen from tens of kilometres away. From the top of the castle one can admire a stupendous view that embraces the course of the Panaro river and the Modenese plain. Art, an illustrious history and naturalistic enchantment come together here. Famous for having been the summer residence of the Marquises Montecuccoli until 1796, the castle is also known as the 'Conventino' after a Carmelite convent founded near the walls in 1632 by Francesco Montecuccoli.
In 1630, Marquis Francesco Montecuccoli began a radical restoration that transformed the ancient fortress into a sumptuous noble residence for his family.
You enter the historical centre of Guiglia from the monumental archway, dating back to 1710, with the Montecuccoli eagle, and then climb up to the manor house amidst 15th- and 16th-century houses. The solemn portal on the façade leads to the courtyard with a loggia with columns and stuccoes in a sumptuous Baroque style similar to that of the seventeenth-century Este residences; the mighty medieval tower dominates everything.
During the war period, the works of art of the Galleria Estense in Modena were hidden there and in the post-war period it briefly housed a casino.
Also near the castle is the Church of the Blessed Virgin of St. Luke, completed in 1715, which houses the tombs of the Montecuccoli family. The Montecuccoli family was devoted to the Madonna of San Luca, which is why the Oratory is a miniature reproduction of the Sanctuary of San Luca in Bologna.
The Torre del Pubblico, located in front of the original entrance to the fortress, has a square plan, a terracotta portal with a splayed arch and is surmounted by the belfry with a 17th-century bell. The adjoining building probably served as the Casella, the place where community meetings were held.