Rocca di Gradara, a jewel of Italian fortified architecture, is the result of several phases of reconstruction that have occurred over the centuries, until the last great restoration done between 1921 and 1923, which marked the building with a strong imprint of medieval and neo-medieval style.
The castle layout – a quadrilateral with corner towers – can be seen as a typical example of fourteenth century military architecture.
Owned by the Malatesti family until the family’s defeat by Federico di Montefeltro, in 1463 the complex passed to the Sforzas of Pesaro, the family that ruled between 1445 and 1512, years of great splendour for the city and its castles .
Between 1921 and 1923 that the entire complex underwent a complete restoration thanks to Umberto Zanvettori, a little-known lover and patron of the arts. Besides implementing an impressive consolidation of the walls, he carefully staged the rooms, especially those on the main floor, or “piano nobile”, where he replicated the structure of a stately home between the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. Room furnishings are carefully chosen, with pieces of great artistic value found in antique markets and eclectically mixed in different rooms. Paintings on walls depict heraldic emblems of ancient lords and, at times, there is a considerable degree of arbitrary choices.
A legend that developed in fairly recent times says that the tragic story of Paolo and Francesca, the unhappy lovers written of by Dante in Canto V of the Inferno, took place within the residence’s walls.
In 1983, year in which Zanvettori’s widow died, the monument was fully opened to the public, coming into full state ownership.
Piazza Alberta Porta Natale, 1
MON 8:30 - 14.00
TUE 8:30 - 19:15
WED 8:30 - 19:15
THU 8:30 - 19:15
FRI 8:30 - 19:15
SAT 8:30 - 19:15
SUN 8:30 - 19:15