The Museum of Decorative Arts has been housed in the Hôtel Lallemant since 1951. Its boasts collections of French and Dutch furniture, including a rare carved, engraved ebony cabinet, inlaid and japanned furniture, a set of 16th and 17th century tapestries, as well as items in faïence, enamels, ivories, glasswork, clocks, miniature furniture made by master craftsmen.
Flemish, Italian and French paintings lend an intimate atmosphere to this display. One can notice masterpieces of the 17th century: a cabaret scene by N. Tournier, an allegory by S. Vouet and a religious painting attributed to Nicolas Poussin.References:
Sirmione castle was built near the end of the 12th century as part of a defensive network surrounding Verona. The castle was maintained and extended first as part of the Veronese protection against their rivals in Milan and later under the control of the Venetian inland empire. The massive fortress is totally surrounded by water and has an inner porch which houses a Roman and Medieval lapidary. From the drawbridge, a staircase leads to the walkways above the walls, providing a marvellous view of the harbour that once sheltered the Scaliger fleet. The doors were fitted with a variety of locking systems, including a drawbridge for horses, carriages and pedestrians, a metal grate and, more recently, double hinged doors. Venice conquered Sirmione in 1405, immediately adopting provisions to render the fortress even more secure, fortifying its outer walls and widening the harbour.
Thanks to its strategical geographical location as a border outpost, Sirmione became a crucial defence and control garrison for the ruling nobles, retaining this function until the 16th century, when its role was taken up by Peschiera del Garda.