The castle, which dates back to 1285 defends the territory and the entrance to the ancient village of Vasanello. Orso Orsini built the first tower to defend his properties. However, after only four years, the castle was conquered by a series of aristocratic families.
By the mid-fifteenth century, the property had returned to the Orsini family, who transformed the grim fortress into a delightful residence. The interior was fitted with wooden ceilings which, together with decorative freizes, were frescoed with heraldic symbols celebrating Orsini marriages with other great aristocratic names. Later the castle passed into the hands of other dynasties: the Della Rovere, the Colonna, the Barberini and, since the early nineteen hundreds, the Misciattelli, the current owners.
Matrons, brides, and damsels
The castle was inhabited by some of the most famous women of the Renaissance. Adriana Mila, a Spanish cousin of Pope Alexander VI Borgia, was Ludovico Orsini’s wife and guardian of the Pope’s children. Adriana lived there together with Giulia Farnese and the young Lucretia Borgia
Giulia Farnese, wife of Orsino Orsini and known as “the Fair”, became the mistress of Pope Alexander VI Borgia, who was maddened by jealousy by her lengthy stays at Vasanello with her husband.
Giulia’s daughter, Laura, received the castle and its contents as part of her dowry on her marriage to Nicola della Rovere.