The Rocca Borromeo di Angera, also called Borromeo Castle, is a castle that stands on a lakeside hilltop in the limits of the town of Angera on the shores of Lago Maggiore. It is visible from across the lake from Arona, where originally stood another castle formerly owned by the Borromeo family.
Before 1227, the castle belonged to the Della Torre family, who lost the possession to the Visconti after the Battle of Desio (1277). In 1449, it passed into the ownership of the Borromeo family. It once belonged to the Visconti family, beginning with Bernabò Visconti and his wife, Beatrice della Scala. but it was purchased by the Borromeo family who expanded and refurbished the castle over the centuries. It still belongs to the Borromeo family. It is best known for it Hall of Justice (Sala di Giustizia) which still contains its original late 13th century depicting the victory of Ottone Visconti, archbishop of Milan, at the Battle of Desio. The castle suffered damage during bombardment in the second world war.
The castle also contains a Museo della Bambola (Doll Museum), founded in 1988 by the wish of Princess Bona Borromeo Arese, and displays over a thousand dolls made between the 18th century and the present day.References:
Heidelberg Castle is a famous ruin and one of the the most important Renaissance structures north of the Alps. The rich and eventful history of Heidelberg Palace began when the counts palatine of the Rhine, – later prince electors – established their residence at Heidelberg. The earliest castle structure was built before 1214 and later expanded into two castles circa 1294; however, in 1537, a lightning-bolt destroyed the upper castle. Until the Thirty Years’ War, Heidelberg Palace boasted one of the most notable ensembles of buildings in the Holy Roman Empire. The present structures had been expanded by 1650, before damage by later wars and fires. In 1764, another lightning-bolt caused a fire which destroyed some rebuilt sections.
The 19th century brought a new wave of admiration: a sight both terrible and beautiful, the ruins epitomised the spirit of the Romantic movement. Heidelberg Palace was elevated to a national monument. The imposing edifice and its famous garden, the Hortus Palatinus, became shrouded in myth. The garden, the last work commissioned by the prince electors, was never completed. Some remaining landscaped terraces and other vestiges hint at the awe-inspiring scale of this ambitious project. In the 17th century, it was celebrated as the “eighth wonder of the world”. While time has taken its toll, Heidelberg Palace’s fame lives on to this day.
Heidelberg Castle is located 80 metres up the northern part of the Königstuhl hillside, and thereby dominates the view of the old downtown. Set against the deep green forests on the north flank of Königstuhl hill, the red sandstone ruins tower majestically over the Neckar valley.