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Visit to Cini Castle

There is no doubt that every walled city defends its own castle…
Let us then cross Monselice’ s walls and in a few minutes reach the foot of Rocca Hill, where Cini Castle rises

At first glance one can already recognize the peculiarity of this Castle from the front yard : it is a mixture of several kinds of buildings dating back to different ages.
Its restoration can be credited to Earl Vittorio Cini, who started in 1935 by rearranging the castle with a collection of furniture, armour and original weapons bought from collectors and restorers in order to recreate the atmosphere of each historical period. The castle was in fact looted by the Italian Regal Army during World War I.



Opening: from Tuesday to Sunday
(closed on Monday), from the last
Sunday of March until the last Sunday of November. The remainder period of the year
is open for groups by appointment.

Visiting hours:

Solar time period h 9.00 - 10.00 - 11.00 a.m
+ h 2.00 - 3.00 - 4.00 p.m.
Daylight saving time h 9.00 - 10.00 - 11.00 a.m. + h 3.00 - 4.00 - 5.00 p.m.

Entrance ticket:

€ 5.50 for adults; € 4.50 reduced for groups and seniors over sixty-five years old; € 3.00 for schools and students from 6 to 14 years old.


The visit starts from the building
on the left, the Tower of Ezzelino
da Romano III, a famous tyrant
and vicar of the Emperor Frederick II
of Swabia. This medieval building
was used for defense purposes
dating back to the 13th century,
and is made from trachite, the
local stone extracted from
Rocca cave.

Panelled ceiling

The 17th century panelled ceiling, coming from Cento's Pepoli Palace, represents a sort of encyclopaedia of animals (it was originally painted with 289 species of animals).


The adjacent building is Ca' Marcello, added in the 15th century by the Marcellos', a noble venetian family that arrived in Monselice in 1405, the year in which the Most Serene Republic of Venice conquered these lands, and stayed there until 1840. This venetian palace connected the tower with the house in order to create a whole unit , using a roman style on the right which dates back to the 11th century. On the first floor there is the entrance, furnished in Renaissance style, for the most part from Tuscany, characterized by a typical Venetian flooring, elastic and light, resistant to moisture and shear.

After leaving this room you enter Marcello's apartment, placed right over the Armoury.
On the second floor there is a gambrel-roof room, where the guests used to wait until the doors of the reception hall opened, letting them enjoy this place of parties, banquets and dances. A collection of Flemish tapestry wall hangings describes the main phases of a battle. The 16th century fireplace is made from Verona red marble.
Game room: marvellous Carraresi fireplace with Venetian frescoes.
Music room: a 13th century fireplace; an ivory spinet on the table.


The medieval kitchen

Before concluding the visit, the medieval kitchen inside the 11th century roman house is worth a look. The furniture we can see here today dates back to the 13th century, but in the Middle Ages the kitchens were arranged with wood axes on trestles and benches only when people needed to dine, and dismantled right after in order to avoid fires due to the huge fireplace, and to leave servants and animals a place to sleep. The spit inside the fireplace could be used to broil an animal whole. It was given a chain and a counter weight to facilitate its movement.


The Armour Room

The large Armour Room on the ground floor is today subdivided into three smaller rooms, a work of the Carraresi family that began living there in 1318 and started converting the castle into a house. The red and white chequered walls show the colours of Padua and are a sign of the lordship. The other rooms house an armoury set up by Earl Cini with a collection of crossbows, polearms and firearms, and full body armours.


DParticularly interesting is the original Carraresi tower-shaped fireplace that introduces the use of fireplaces inside the houses. It is made up of two hoods, an external one, decorated, and an internal one, used to allow the smoke out. Between them there is a refractory sand pocket used to release heat even after the fire is extinguished.


The Campiello

Going out we find the campiello, a typical venetian yard with a well in the middle. The tank underneath would gather the water coming from holes in the yard, filtered by the sand and going up again to the well according to the principle of communicating vessels.
The yard is surrounded by gardens on seven levels of terraces going up the Rocca hill side.

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