As is common for this type of building, information about its origins is very vague: traces of a "castrum sigifridi" in the 11th century; the legend that the castle was destroyed by Barbarossa as it was the property of the bishop of Guelph Asti; acquisition towards the end of the 13th century by the Isnardi de Castello family, Asti nobles and bankers.
In the 16th century an Isnardi di Sanfrè married a Savoy-Racconigi, uniting the family's economic power with the political power of the Savoys. This allowed them to carry out major construction works, with the addition of new residential wings on to the medieval nucleus, along with various other additions like stables, staff accommodation and farm houses. Major works led to the coverage of the oldest part of the medieval village in order to carve out a large terraced garden overlooking the plain and other important works, like the excavation of a large underground ice room for storing snow and ice during the winter and preserving foodstuffs.
The castle's tallest (and oldest) tower was used as a trigonometric point by the 18th-century Piedmontese mathematician G.B. Beccaria, as part of his triangulations aimed at measuring the length of the degree of meridian at Piedmont's latitude. Because of its excellent visibility, the tower is still an important trigonometric point in the Italian Military Geographic Institute's network.
In 1630, Maria Cristina, the Duchess of Savoy and future Madama Reale, escaped plague-ravaged Turin to spend a few months at the Sanfrè castle, guest of the grand chamberlain, the Marquis Isnardi di Caraglio.
At the end of the 18th century, when the Isnardi family died out, the castle was inherited by the Portuguese De Souza family. The current owners are descended from them through the female line.
Unfortunately in the 19th century and especially in the first two decades of the 20th century, for various reasons the castle suffered a slow decline and was stripped of all its original furnishings. Between 1920 and 1960 the castle was used as a novitiate by the Consolata missionary sisters, who it adapted for their own use, for example transforming the old stables into a chapel.
L'attuale chiesa parrocchiale dei Santi Pietro e Paolo ricostruita agli inizi del ‘700, l'antica parrocchiale della Trinità, la Chiesa di S. Agostino o dei Battuti Bianchi, la Chiesa di S. Giovanni o dei Battuti Neri, la Chiesa della Madonna del Popolo, la Chiesa della Madonna Addolorata, il Convento di Loreto fatto edificare alla fine del ‘500, il Complesso Curtense Motta degli Isnardi
Bra e Museo di Palazzo Traversa, complesso di Pollenzo (testimonianze archeologiche di età romana e medioevale e monumenti di epoca carloalbertina) e Agenzia di Pollenzo, Alba e i castelli di Langhe e Roero; Parco Forestale del Roero
L'economia di Sanfrè si basa principalmente sulla coltivazione del mais e della soia. "Fuaset" (dolce fatto con la pasta del pane, ma zuccherato) e salsiccia di Bra. Vini e formaggi del Roero.
Piscina comunale, escursioni a piedi e in bicicletta.
Cantè j'euv nel periodo pasquale; Festa Patronale dei Corpi Santi nei primi giorni di ottobre e Palio delle Galline; Presepe Vivente, Mostra dei Presepi e Presepe Elettromeccanico nelle festività natalizie; tutti i Giovedì in P.zza De Zardo il mercato settimanale.