Castello Brown is a house museum located high above the harbour of Portofino. The castle's site is well suited for harbour defence, and appears to have been so used since the 15th century. According to the Record Office of Genoa, cannon batteries were constructed on the site in the early 16th century, and military engineer Giovanni Maria Olgiati drew up plans for a full fortress circa 1554. The resultant castello was completed by 1557, and, in 1575, was instrumental in turning back an attack on the town by Giò Andrea Doria. The structure was enlarged from 1622 to 1624, and survived in this form for a century and a half. The little tower was destroyed in 1798 by an English attack during Napoleon's Ligurian Republic. The castello was abandoned after the Congress of Vienna in 1815.

In 1867, the structure was purchased for 7,000 lire by Montague Yeats-Brown, then English consul in Genoa. He engaged the architect Alfredo D'Andrade, and with advice from his artist friend and fellow-consul James Harris the fort was transformed to a comfortable villa without substantial alteration in its general form. His descendants held the property until 1949, then sold it to an English couple, Colonel and Mrs. John Baber, who restored several ruined sections, until they in turn sold it in 1961 to the City of Portofino.

Elizabeth von Arnim wrote her book The Enchanted April at the castello in 1922. The 1992 movie was also filmed there.

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Founded: 1554
Category: Castles and fortifications in Italy

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en.wikipedia.org

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User Reviews

Fahad Adnan (7 months ago)
heaven on earth. try to up on castle. view is good. but resturants over priced
Troy Brown (9 months ago)
We took a Mediterranean cruise and were blessed to have a day in Portofino. Portofino was the most beautiful village we saw while cruising the Mediterranean. It was extremely clean and the people and merchants were friendly. We were told the citizens don't like the cruise ships and tourist. I didn't feel that at all. Castello Brown sits high above Portofino, watching over and protecting this hidden treasure. Being Browns we took a particular interest in the castle. It is a long walk uphill and up many stairs, but the view from the castle is amazing.
Tarakorn Angpubate (10 months ago)
A must visit to get top scenic view of Portofino. Have a15-20 minutes walk up hill and pay EUR 5/person to get access. It has clean toilet and quite a well maintained rooms, paintings, sculptures of the old castle. Fantastic view.
Roisin Oflaherty (11 months ago)
Stunning views over Portofino. From there you can walk down to the lighthouse and grab a drink in the bar! Thirst quenched and so, so beautiful.
Roberto Carenzi (11 months ago)
While Portofino itself is overestimated, this castle brought my visit a nice turnover. Even tough the path to reach the lighthouse was closed, reaching the castle was a nice idea. 5€ to enter is a bit too much, but the view is worthy, especially from the windows on the sea, than on Portofino where you can see just ships and restaurant.
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