The castle of Spadafora was built at the end of the sixteenth century around a defensive tower by the Spadafora family to control the coasts. The tower was probably enlarged or rebuilt in the early 1500s. Four imposing trapezoidal-shaped corner spurs are surrounded by battlements, in whose interspaces the artillery were placed. In the angular ends of each spur stand the casemates, to protect the soldiers on guard.
Between 1654 and 1670 were carried out renovations that most likely changed the architectural features of the castle with insertion of rooms, doors and windows, iron grates and balconies, and the rebuilding of the ramparts. From the 18th century it was transformed into a noble residence.
Between the end of the nineteenth century and the beginning of the last century it was used as a private residence by the Samonà family, descendants of Princess Alessandra Spadafora Colonna.
After the loss of the Castle by the Samonà family, the building was abandoned and was for years the victim of the negligence of the successive administrations. It is currently owned by the Region. It returned to new life after the restoration of the Superintendency of Cultural Heritage of Messina, and hosts numerous cultural events.References:
German crusaders known as the Livonian Brothers of the Sword began construction of the Cēsis castle (Wenden) near the hill fort in 1209. When the castle was enlarged and fortified, it served as the residence for the Order's Master from 1237 till 1561, with periodic interruptions. Its ruins are some of the most majestic castle ruins in the Baltic states. Once the most important castle of the Livonian Order, it was the official residence for the masters of the order.
In 1577, during the Livonian War, the garrison destroyed the castle to prevent it from falling into the control of Ivan the Terrible, who was decisively defeated in the Battle of Wenden (1578).
In 1598 it was incorporated into the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth and Wenden Voivodship was created here. In 1620 Wenden was conquered by Sweden. It was rebuilt afterwards, but was destroyed again in 1703 during the Great Northern War by the Russian army and left in a ruined state. Already from the end of the 16th century, the premises of the Order's castle were adjusted to the requirements of the Cēsis Castle estate. When in 1777 the Cēsis Castle estate was obtained by Count Carl Sievers, he had his new residence house built on the site of the eastern block of the castle, joining its end wall with the fortification tower.
Since 1949, the Cēsis History Museum has been located in this New Castle of the Cēsis Castle estate. The front yard of the New Castle is enclosed by a granary and a stable-coach house, which now houses the Exhibition Hall of the Museum. Beside the granary there is the oldest brewery in Latvia, Cēsu alus darītava, which was built in 1878 during the later Count Sievers' time, but its origins date back to the period of the Livonian Order. Further on, the Cēsis Castle park is situated, which was laid out in 1812. The park has the romantic characteristic of that time, with its winding footpaths, exotic plants, and the waters of the pond reflecting the castle's ruins. Nowadays also one of the towers is open for tourists.