In 1591 Archbishop Wolf Dietrich purchased a hospital and church in today's Kai District to establish a seminary. It was to be managed by an order of Theatine monks, founded by St. Cajetan and Pietro Caraffa in 1524. The order was brought to Salzburg in 1685 to found a new mission. Shortly thereafter a decision was reached to build a church and abbey in the Kai District at the very same location.
Gaspare Zugalli was commissioned as the architect and the brothers Francesco and Carl-Antonio Brenno and Antonio Carabelli provided the stuccowork. Construction of the Cajetan Church was discontinued upon Max Gandolf's death in 1687. It was completed in 1696 under Archbishop Johann Ernst von Thun and consecrated in 1700. The Theatine mission in Salzburg was dissolved in 1809 and the Cajetan Church almost fell to ruin. The church and abbey were turned over to the Brothers of Mercy in 1923, who took care of its maintenance. The building was used as a hospital during World War II. It was damaged by bombs in 1944 and later restored.
The Cajetan Church is a typical product of the Italian Baroque in Salzburg. The broad, palatial façade connects the church and abbey to form a single unit. It has a mighty tambour dome, giving the building its sacred character. The stuccowork inside the church lends a festive, elegant and distinct atmosphere. The dome, designed to allow light to flood in, dominates the room. The fresco in the mighty dome depicts the 'Glory of St. Cajetan'. The high altar has a painting of 'The Martyrdom of St. Maximilian'. The oldest preserved organ in Salzburg, built around 1700 by Christoph Egedacher, is installed above the vestibule in the gallery parapet. The Sacred Stairway, built in 1712, is a special feature of the Cajetan Church and should only be ascended on one's knees. It is still reminiscent of the baroque forms of piety.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.