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A guide about the Piedmontese chief town to bewitch you with the charm of its great monuments.

Piazza Galimberti

It is dedicated to the Cuneo hero of the Resistance Duccio Galimberti and it was projected by Grato Perno in 1836 and ended fifty years later. It is one of the largest squares in Piedmont and in the centre, framed by ten neoclassical palaces, in the middle stands the monument dedicated to Giuseppe Barbaroux (Minister of Justice and principal author of the Albertine State Code). The square every Tuesday becomes the true heart of city life, thanks to the market: the stalls occupy it entirely and join it to Via Roma. On the left side, looking towards Via Roma, there is Palazzo Galimberti, home to a picture gallery and a museum that contains a large documentary exhibition. From the terrace of an adjoining building, on 16 July 1943, Duccio Galimberti gave a speech that marked the beginning of the Cuneo Resistance. On the opposite side you can see the Palazzo della Prefettura, which preserves a large and imposing internal staircase. Nearby there is Palazzo Cassini, a place very dear to the people of Cuneo for a historic citizen coffee now known internationally also thanks to its famous artisan pralines.

Via Roma

It seems that in ancient times, known as Via Maestra, it was a market square: the façades were framed inside the porticoes of the buildings. Due to the frequent snowfalls, canopies were set up to offer shelter to the merchants, who were later transformed into arcades surmounted by new houses.

The City Hall

Located in Via Roma at the corner of Piazza Audifreddi, its construction dates back to two different eras: the oldest part, to 1631. In 1775 the municipality bought it and enlarged it with a new body designed by Martinez. Inside there are two interesting rooms: the Sala della Giunta, frescoed by Angelo Persico in 1791, and the Hall of Honor with 19th-century frescoes by Borgocarratti.

Teatro Civico Toselli
Dedicated to the great Cuneo actor Giovanni Toselli, it was built in Via Roma in 1803 and renovated in 1828 by the architect Carlo Barbarino. It is particularly suggestive the reconstruction of the social life of Cuneo through the words reported by the chronicler Camillo Fresia: «Near the theatre, in the rooms where he then settled and then prospered the hotel of the castle of Bene, he had implanted his army  Emanuele Gianaria; and there, invariably most of the spectators moved for the dinner, which included the fried Lamprede and the “bas de soie”. The spectators  in the theatre occupied the time conversing, exchanging visits in the balconies … the ladies brought pastries, candies and tittle-tattles here and there through the room, offering them to friends. Everyone knew each other, everyone spoke the word, everyone felt at home … ».

The Soleri viaduct

Built between 1921 and 1933, it is also known as the “New Bridge“. The maximum height it reaches is 47.50 meters and consists of two parts: a straight road for cars and a curved line for the railway.

The civic Museum

Housed in the complex of the former church of San Francesco in Via Santa Maria, it hosts findings from prehistory to the modern age. The exhibition path winds through sections of numismatics, wood crafts, history of the city, sacred art and Piedmontese painting (800 and 900). In the adjacent church in Gothic Lombard style of San Francesco (national monument), built in 1227 with a bell tower of 1339, photographic exhibitions and classical music concerts are enabled. The sacred building was finished in 1481; it has a gothic facade, portal and single lancet windows.

Galimberti  Museum
It is located in the birthplace of the hero of the Resistance. It conserves his objects, collections and the his family library.

Astronomical observatory
Set up in 1990 at the “G. Peano”, it is open to the public for the observation of sunspots.

The cathedral
It is called simply Duomo by the inhabitants and it stands in Via Roma. The current building, in the form of a Greek cross, is composed of four arms that depart from a central body in a circular shape surmounted by a large dome where the play of volumes designed with taste and balance is particularly noteworthy. The entire building was designed by Giovenale Boetto and dates back to the 17th century; it has a neoclassical façade (work of Bono) and the dome dates back to 1835. Inside it houses paintings by Andrea Pozzo and Giuseppe Nicolazzi and a remarkable wooden choir, made of solid wood from the second half of the ‘700. At the entrance on the left there is a niche that preserves an elegant Gothic stone baptistery dating back to 1490 surmounted by a bas-relief panel representing original sin. In the chapel dedicated to the Blessed Sacrament, you can see a large Baroque marble altar with embedded squares of the Mysteries of the Rosary and  a statue of the Madonna and Child from the eighteenth century.

Lovera Palace
Today it is home to a prestigious city hotel. Its origins are very remote. The facade is in eighteenth-century style even if the construction is much older. It seems that in 1515 the palace hosted Francis I, King of France, who after crossing the Colle della Maddalena, went to Lombardy. The ancient building  hosted also Pope Pius VIII, a prisoner of Napoleon.

The Church Palace
The building dates back to the 1500s and is typically Renaissance in style, characterised by a beautiful stone portal adorned with a precious frieze. Inside there is a pretty courtyard with a cobblestone pavement on which columns with decorated capitals. On the façade, which is prospectively frontal with respect to the entrance, there are two presumably fifteenth-century forked loggias.

Audifreddi Palace
Today it is the seat of the civic library. It has a dark red terracotta façade characterised by three rows of windows with sturdy railings and, below, there is a massive door that hides a beautiful green garden with a stone basin in the centre. The shape of the building led illustrious architects to believe that this building was once owned by the Franciscan Order. It was actually built by Count Alessandro Mellano of Fiano and Monasterolo.

Barberidi Branzola Palace
In front you can notice the medieval tower built by the Valdieri family; today it houses the Bruni Conservatory of Music.

Church of Sant’Ambrogio

The building that stands in Via Roma is in Baroque style. Its construction, work of Francesco Gallo, was begun in 1710 and was completed in 1743. It has a Greek cross plan and preserves frescoes realised by Michele Millocco and Carlo Bianco.

Church of Santa Croce

Located in Via Santa Croce, at the corner of Via Ospedale, it was rebuilt in the Baroque period on a project by Francesco Gallo. The chair preserved inside is that, according to tradition, is that on which San Bernardino da Siena sat.

Church of Santa Maria
Located in the street of the same name, it was built in 1655 following a project by Giovenale Boetto. The apse, rebuilt in 1726 is the work of Francesco Gallo. The interior of the church is enriched with paintings by Toselli, del Pozzo and Lanfranchi.

Church of San Sebastiano
From 1320 it stands in via Mondovì, the most characteristic street of the city. Inside there is a painting by Molineri (1625) and some paintings realised by Giulio and Gian Battista Bruni (XVII century), as well as the remarkable chorus of 1595, by Tommaso Fontana.

Church of Santa Chiara
Currently closed to the public, it was realised in 1712 by Francesco Gallo, it contains noteworthy frescoes by G. Carlo Alberti and del Pozzi.

Church of the Madonna of the Olmo
It dates back to 1606 and it was built by the architect Oreste Negri from Sanfront. It contains works by Moncalvo.

Church of the Sacro Cuore
Built between 1893 and 1895 in an area of ​​fields and vegetable gardens, this church is a typical building in false Gothic style, a taste very popular in those years in Cuneo. Today the facade is in grey stone and the interior is divided into three naves. The entrance door is highlighted by a canopy, supported by small columns supported by stone lions. Of importance is the tall and thin bell tower enriched by friezes, battlements and decorations that end at the apex with a sharp pinnacle bearing the statuette of the Sacred Heart, in gilded bronze by Del Bo of Milan.

Santuario degli Angeli
The primitive building, located on the bank of the Gesso river three kilometres from the city centre, dates back to the fifteenth century, while the current one is from 1718. Inside, you can see the sculptural group of the Madonna degli Angeli, the painting “San Diego d ‘ Alcantara » realised by Moncalvo and a large wooden crucifix, preserved in the chapel on the right. In the park, surrounding the sanctuary, there is also the monument to the Resistance of the sculptor Umberto Mastroianni.

Villa Custoza
This majestic construction, is enclosed by a wall and a majestic and secular park. In the past it was a holiday home, built in 1600 by Monsignor Diego della Chiesa. Today the old building remains the central part,  it is pretty different from the original, although the changes made over time, have certainly respected the previous forms.

Villa Tornaforte
It stands in the hamlet of Madonna dell’Olmo and was a convent of the Augustinian friars. It is currently private property. In addition to the park, open to the public, we suggest a visit to the ground floor to admire interesting neoclassical decorations.

Station lighthouse

It is a curious work of the engineer Cesare Vinaj built around 1937. It looks like stem, bearing a huge octagonal reflector on the tip. At the foot a large geometric concrete tank, serves as a collection for the water of the fountain that gushes upwards.

Madonna della Riva Sanctuary
You can access from a picturesque paved road at the end of the old bridge of Cuneo. The street is easily recognizable thanks to a column bearing a beautiful statue of the Virgin, a work dating back to the nineteenth century. Crossing a couple of hairpin bends, going along a wooded path, we arrive at this sanctuary that arose, according to historical investigations, in rather distant times, it seems around the fifteenth century. It was built where on a very pure water fountain, to whom was magical virtues were attributed. The source was known as “Fonte Santa”, while the little church was nicknamed “Madonna della Fontana”. No trace of the original fountain has remained today. However, another fountain with non-miraculous waters replaces the flow. The building, following various vicissitudes, became the possession of the order of the Capuchins, who carried out its enlargement, restructuring and transformation into a Sanctuary, a place of pilgrimage aimed at prayer and the veneration of the miraculous image of the Virgin, preserved here.  Destroyed due to the siege of 1799, it was then rebuilt in 1835. Today the façade of the church is very simple, it is tripartite in the vertical sense and adorned with a simple pediment in the central part, above the entrance door. On the roof, instead, a small series of domes gives an exotic taste to the structure. Inside the central nave is particularly dark compared to the side aisles, but what leaves you most enchanted is a long series of votive offerings along the walls to commemorate the graces received. Above the main altar there is an ancient painting of the Virgin, depicting the Madonna in the act of breastfeeding the Infant Jesus. This is an image particularly revered by the faithful.

Casa Samone
The building stands opposite the old hospital and the church of Santa Croce, in the historic centre. It bears the name  of the family who built it, it was projected by the Cuneo architect Pio Eula. In 1882 it was bought by the Administration of the Hospital and, moreover, it was the seat of the sixteenth century Monte di Pietà. Today it has an austere and elegant architecture, while inside it preserves one of the few still existing city wells and it is embellished by a curious wooden canopy.

Historical archive
It collects, preserves and makes available to scholars all the historical documents of the memory of Cuneo, starting from the fourteenth century. Currently the documents that refer to the years up to 1899, are placed and inventoried in the library where they can be freely consulted.

Media library

The Civic Library of Cuneo was founded by the French in 1802 and is currently located inside the Audifreddi palace. It contains volumes, brochures and years of magazines and preserves one of the most important historical archives in the region. It has two separate sections, namely the library of children and young people at the former Civic Boarding School in via Cacciatori delle Alpi, and the Galimberti library. It is also the Network Center of the Library System which coordinates the functioning of libraries and municipal loans in the valleys and plains around the city of Cuneo.

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