Unique amongst castles for its circular form.
Castel di Luco, in the AquasantaTerme district and just 15 kilometers from Ascoli, is unique amongst the remaining castles of the Piceno area, being almost entirely unaltered since the time of its construction in the middle ages.
Having survived the invasion of Carlo D’Angio’s militia and Galeotto Malatesta’s soldiers, Castel di luco has continued to be central in historical events of exceptional importance.
It was, in fact, from here that on the 10th of August in 1445 Pietro di Vanne Ciucci, a noble of Luco, left to head the troop of mountaineers in their mission to free Ascoli from the rule of Rinaldo, brother of Francesco Sforza.
It was also here in 1562 that the famous outlaw, il Parisani, slaughtered Chiarino Montanaro, then custodian of the stronghold. Parisani and his men, having surrounded the castle, proceeded to feign a reconciliation, inviting the Chiarino to leave the stronghold in order to speak with the outlaws. As soon as poor Montanaro opened the gateway, he was shot dead with the stroke of an arquebus. His corpse was then hurled into the river Tronto.
The castle was later transformed into a noble residence, for centuries home to the Ciucci family until 1800 when the marriage of the last heir, Maria, saw the property pass into the hands of the Amici family.
Today, the castle, with more than a thousand years of history to its name, inspires the imagination, conjuring up images of Knights and ladies who greet their guests across the flower filled courtyard to the sound of flutes, accompanying them into the beautifully imposing halls, ideal venues in which to listen to the legendary tales of dancing maidens and secret passageways beneath the castle floors.
In these halls, with their elegantly decorated vaulted ceilings which recall the faces of the ladies in waiting concentrated over their needlework, the visitor is distracted only by the wonderful flavours of the local cuisine, served in the enchanting surroundings of the 18th century salons.
The evening at the Castel di Luco draws to a close: Laura and Francesco Amici, say good night to their guests, guests who tend to hovver in the doorway, as if reluctant to bring to an end such a magical evening.