Cremolino was the main feud of the Monferrato branch of the Malaspina marquises, lords of the Lunigiana.
At over 450 metres above sea level, Cremolino’s castle is the highest in the Alto Monferrato. From here, 14 of the 28 nearby castles can be seen; in fact this is one of areas with the highest density of castles per square kilometre in Europe.
The castle was built in the late 13th century, around a tower that dates from the year 1000, by Tommaso Malaspina, who inherited the estate from his mother Agnese, the last heir of the Aleramici Del Bosco marquises.
When the Malaspina line of Cremolino died out at the end of the 15th century, the castle was enfeoffed by the Marquis of Monferrato to the Sauli and Centurione families from Genoa, and from the mid-16th century to the Dorias. At the end of the 18th century it passed by marriage from them to the Serra marquises of Genoa.
Thanks partly to its triple band of walls, the castle was never conquered and as a result its medieval character, with the drawbridge, 14th-century tower and mighty 15th-century keep, has been preserved intact. The bastions of this medieval fortress look out over one of the most beautiful views of the Alto Monferrato and the Alps.
The owners live permanently in the castle, which is surrounded by a 19th-century park of tall trees, boxwood topiary, roses, hydrangeas and fish ponds full of water-lilies.
Visits to the gardens, the cellars, the public halls, the library and the castle’s private rooms are by guided tour led only by the owner for two groups of no more than 20 people each on open days. This means tours can only be guaranteed by reserving a space at least one day in advance by telephone or email, providing a name and phone number.
Small events, wedding photographs. Small-scale events, elegant seated lunches for up to 30 with no outside catering needed and buffets for concerts, historical car rallies and other events of small-to-medium scale can be organized using only the castle’s staff.
Local sights: Karmel Study Centre (former convent), sanctuary of Nostra Signora di Bruceta
In the area: Acqui Terme thermal baths, Alto Monferrato castles, wineries
Typical products: wines (Dolcetto d’Ovada and d’Acqui, Cortese del Monferrato, Moscato d’Asti, Brachetto di Acqui, Passito di Strevi) Roccaverano Robiola cheese, Ponzone Filetto Baciato salami, white Alba truffles
Sports: tamburello, five-a-side football, tennis; nearby: horseriding, golf, outdoor swimming pools
Events: “Festa delle Frittelle” in the historical village (1st May), “Sagra delle Tagliatelle” and “Festa del Tamburello” food and wine evenings (July)