Borgo del Roero famous for its beautiful castle, with its 13 hectares registered in the DOCG, presents the typical soil of the central area of Roero, rich in clay, from which particularly rich wines are produced.
Fascinating village of Roero which dominates the whole valley of the Tanaro river from the top. Located halfway between the cities of Alba and Asti, it was already crossed by important communication routes in Roman times. This has meant that, in recent years, there has been a significant increase in craft and industrial companies. A place where the most important vines of the hilly areas coexist well, it has always been linked to the history of the Royal Castle, which appears today among the Piedmontese Savoy residences Unesco heritage. It was one of the summer residences of King Carlo Felice di Savoia and it is interesting to visit as a testimony of the court life of the early nineteenth century. The panorama from the Castle and the Italian gardens is remarkable: the avenues of the eighteenth-century park are the work of the landscape architect Xavier Kurten.
The concentric of Govone in December and January turns into “The magical Christmas town”, offering visitors many events related to Christmas, theatrical performances for the little ones and craft markets.
The first mention of “Villa Govoni” dates back to 861. Before 1000 the bishop of Asti owned most of the fiefdom. At the beginning of the twelfth century the fiefdom came into the possession of Rodolfo di Govone, while at the beginning of the thirteenth century Govone was involved in the struggles of the castellani of Astisio against Asti. In 1237, together with the bishop of Asti, who expanded his possessions, the “de Govono”, the “Pallidi” and the “Solaro” appear among the consignors, who according to an investiture of 1349, end up holding almost all of the fiefdom, which they will keep for centuries.
In 1682, according to a handover, 1700 days of feudal lands were recognized to the Savoy.
When in 1792 the last of the Solaros, Vittorio Amedeo Ludovico, died without descendants, the fiefdom with the annexed possessions was donated to the Royal patrimony. In 1897 the Castle was purchased by the Municipality.
WHAT TO SEE
– THE CASTLE. Built for defensive purposes before the year 1000 on the highest hill, then rebuilt in its current forms starting from the seventeenth century by the Counts Solaro, at the time owners, inspired in part by the designs of the architects Guarino Guarini for the facade on the south side and Benedetto Alfieri, disciple of Juvarra, for the north one. The south-facing facade is rich in marble decorations from Venaria, inserted in the mid-eighteenth century by the Solaros, who held the fiefdom until 1792 when, at the death of the last count without direct heirs, the castle passed to the Savoy crown. In the twenties of the nineteenth century the Savoy family restored the castle, so the current Baroque palace with English garden and park became the favourite summer residence for the King of Sardinia Carlo Felice and his wife Maria Cristina of Bourbon. Of great interest are the interiors, characterized by important Chinese wallpapers, and the frescoes in the central hall which reproduce the myth of Niobe.
– THE PARK OF THE CASTLE. The Savoy residence is surrounded by an eighteenth-century Italian garden, designed by box hedges and paths that flow into a central fountain and an English-style park, with avenues of plane trees and horse chestnuts. In the park an ancient orange orchard commonly called “SERRA”, restored by the Municipal Administration, is now used as a hall for conferences, meetings and cultural events. The park hosts the events “Tulipani a corte” (end of March) and “Regalmente Rosa” (end of May) related to floriculture.
– SAN SECONDO. It is the parish church, of Romanesque-Gothic forms, which was once the patron of the Solaro family.
The Gothic apse is pentagonal in shape, with five single lancet windows with stained glass windows representing the figures of five saints: San Secondo, San Rocco, S, Michele, San Sebastiano, San Defendente. Works and restorations followed one another from 1726 to 1736. A few years later the bell tower was redone. In the large baroque grandstand there is a valuable Collino organ from 1869.
– SPIRITO SANTO. Church of the Disciplinanti (Battutibianchi), was rebuilt in Baroque form in 1767. A wooden grandstand once communicated with the Castle. In the interior, paintings by the Pozzo brothers and Giuseppe Morgari (vault decoration).
– CHURCH AND CONVENT in fraz. Craviano. The three-aisled church was joined by the Convent, built by King Carlo Felice of Savoy between 1822 and 1824. Today the convent is home to the Foundation “The hill of the Elves onlus”, a recovery project for children cancer and their families.