This Hidden Gem In Italy Is One Of The Most Beautiful Castles Ever Built
Italy is home to many of the world’s most well-known structures, like the Colosseum or the Leaning Tower of Pisa. It is also home to castles such as the Buonconsiglio in Trento, the Sforza Castle in Milan, but one of its best-hidden gems is the Miramare Castle in Grigano, Italy.
In medieval times, the castle was a status symbol for royal families with a king and queen as its head. In the 19th century, far more people were wealthy and had the fortune to have the castle built for them if the desire for one struck.
The construction of Miramare was planned in 1885 by Austrian Archduke Ferdinand Maximillian. He requested that Austrian architect Carl Junke take the lead on the construction. It needed to reflect the Archduke’s social status. The architecture was built with a mix of Renaissance, Medieval, and Gothic influence.
Maximillian and his wife Charlotte of Belgium moved into Miramare in 1860, just five years after construction began. Tragedy struck both him and his wife soon after their small-time living at the castle surrounded by 54 acres of lush gardens.
While living in Italy, Ferdinand Maximillian was requested by the French Emperor Napoleon III to be the Emperor of Mexico in 1864. Little to the Archduke’s knowledge, Mexico was in the middle of a civil war.
While his wife Charlotte had gone back to Europe to seek aid from Napoleon III and Pope Pius IX, her husband was jailed by Republic troops that supported President Juarez and executed in 1867.
Maximillian’s wife Charlotte was kept in the dark for months about her husband’s death. When she found out, it broke her mentally.
Despite the tragedy that befell the initial occupants, Miramare Castle had served other functions in the past. During World War I, all the furniture was moved to Vienna. And in World War II, it functioned as a base for the Italian army.
It is now presented as a museum for visitors, who can see the original artwork that stayed with the house.