The medieval village of Capalbio: Palazzo Collacchioni, a splendid Renaissance palace inside the Aldobrandesca fortress.
Tuscany is a region to be experienced and discovered in every corner, where everything speaks of history and art, the child of illustrious personalities linked to the area, from Leonardo da Vinci to Michelangelo to Dante Alighieri.
Then there is the naturalistic Tuscany, with landscapes that leave one breathless because of their unspeakable beauty: think of the Chianti hills, the Crete Senesi, the Val d'Orcia and the Maremma, in particular the Maremma of Grosseto that stretches from the mouth of the Chiarone to the Gulf of Follonica, including the lower valley of the Ombrone and remote moors populated by horses driven by cowboys and dotted with picturesque villages such as Pitigliano, Manciano and Capalbio. Defined in the past as Little Athens because of its artistic heritage, the town preserves an evocative medieval atmosphere, where every alley and corner seems to have been left behind in times long past.
Holidays in Capalbio: discovering Palazzo Collacchioni
The historical centre of Capalbio is a small medieval jewel made up of stone houses, flowered balconies, alleys and a double wall that has surrounded it since the 11th-12th century, when the Aldobrandeschi built the first walls. The second wall was instead built by the Sienese in the 15th century. Anyone can walk along the patrol walkways, accessible both from Via Vittorio Emanuele II and from Porta Senese, the ancient entrance to Capalbio with its double arch, Medici coat of arms and remains of the iron gate that was closed at night to keep the village safe.
One of Capalbio's symbolic monuments is undoubtedly Palazzo Collacchioni, literally leaning against the tower of the beautiful Rocca Aldobrandesca. It is one of the most elegant palazzi in the Maremma town, with a quadrangular plan and a mighty scarp base. Softening the building is the crenellated terrace at the top, from which there is a beautiful view of the entire town.
In the past, Palazzo Collacchioni belonged to the Roman Abbey of the Three Fountains, and then passed into the hands of the Aldobrandeschi family in the 11th century, who undertook to further fortify the building.
Over the centuries, the palace became the property of the Orsini of Pitigliano and then of the Sienese in the 15th century, becoming a true stronghold in the south of the Republic of Siena.
With the fall of Siena, the Medici took over and Palazzo Collacchioni became part of the Grand Duchy of Tuscany, inevitably following its fate.
What to see in Palazzo Collacchioni and more
Palazzo Collacchioni presents, beyond the entrance portal, a beautiful courtyard with a well, which was used to draw water from an underground cistern.
The building consists of three floors and, although the interiors are now not very well furnished and rather bare, they still exude a certain charm: many rooms in fact have large fireplaces and are frescoed in Renaissance style. Among the few but valuable pieces of period furniture in the palace is the beautiful Conrad Graf piano, which is said to have also been played by the composer Giacomo Puccini during his many stops in Capalbio.
Palazzo Collacchioni was also chosen in the past by Duccio Tessari as the set for his film 'C'era un castello con 40 cani' with Salvatore Cascio and Peter Ustinov. Many of the most important events in Capalbio take place in Palazzo Collacchioni and the nearby Piazza Magenta, where Capalbio è Vino and the Capalbio International Prize are staged. This kind of festival attracts many VIPs to Capalbio, including artists, journalists, historians and politicians.
From Palazzo Collacchioni it is easy to reach the Pieve di San Nicola, built between the 11th and 12th centuries, inside which it is possible to admire a series of beautiful Renaissance frescoes of the evident Umbrian-Senese school, among which a splendid Madonna and Child Enthroned stands out. A stone's throw from the church is the Arco Santo, surmounted by a stone sculpture depicting the head of Emperor Hadrian from the 2nd century A.D., most probably from the ancient Roman city of Cosa.
Hotel Residence Valle del Buttero
In the heart of Capalbio, immersed in the dense and luxuriant vegetation typical of the Maremma, stands the Hotel Residence Valle del Buttero. This accommodation facility is the best for those wishing to enjoy their holiday in Capalbio and its surroundings, without straying far from the historic centre, which can be reached on foot in just a few minutes. The rooms, as well as the suites and flats, are equipped with all comforts, from wi-fi to satellite TV and air conditioning, with a nice courtesy set based on olive oil from the Maremma region, demonstrating the hotel's attention to its guests, who feel truly pampered at Valle del Buttero. The hotel offers its guests a table tennis table, billiards, a beautiful outdoor swimming pool surrounded by a green garden, and a gym with Technogym equipment. Breakfast is made of genuine, km0 products, prepared on site such as cakes and tarts, and local cheeses: there is also the possibility of opting for breakfast with soya or rice milk or gluten-free products.
The Hotel Residence Valle del Buttero remains impressed on guests, who cannot fail to appreciate the kindness and courtesy of all the staff, attentive to every need like a family welcoming old friends into their home. They also provide vouchers to dine in affiliated restaurants in Capalbio at slightly discounted prices, so guests can enjoy traditional Tuscan cuisine made up of dishes such as acquacotta, pappa al pomodoro, pici, tortelli maremmani al ragù and cinghiale alla cacciatora.
From the Hotel Residence Valle del Buttero it is possible to go on excursions in the surrounding area, activities in Capalbio that you absolutely must do, to discover places such as the 12-km-long sandy beach, the splendid Lake Burano State Nature Reserve and finally the Tarot Garden in Garavicchio.