Bereguardo Castle, also called the Castello Visconteo of Bereguardo, was built in the first half of the 14th century, commissioned by Luchino Visconti to present a defense to the western borders of the Milan. It was also used as a winter residence and hunting lodge by Galeazzo II Visconti.
By the 15th century some refurbishment was pursued by Filippo Maria Visconti, who also constructed the Naviglio di Bereguardo, a canal linking to the Naviglio Grande.
The Duke Francesco I Sforza granted the castle to then Lord of Bereguardo, Giovanni Maruzzi da Tolentino, a captain and counselor to the Duke. In 1648, and it remained in this family's possession till the 18th century. After passing through a number of owners, it was donated in 1897 to the commune by the engineer Giulio Pisa. Presently, it houses city hall and the town library.
Originally, the castle was a square, made of brick, but the northern wing was razed. The southern end maintains a moated bridge and shows the original crenellations. The Eastern end has a bifore or single mullioned window. The castle lost a surrounding wall and the interiors are highly modified.References:
Craigmillar is one of Scotland’s most perfectly preserved castles. It began as a simple tower-house residence. Gradually, over time, it developed into a complex of structures and spaces, as subsequent owners attempted to improve its comfort and amenity. As a result, there are many nooks and crannies to explore.
The surrounding gardens and parkland were also important. The present-day Craigmillar Castle Park has fascinating reminders of the castle’s days as a rural retreat on the edge of Scotland’s capital city.
At the core lies the original, late-14th-century tower house, among the first of this form of castle built in Scotland. It stands 17m high to the battlements, has walls almost 3m thick, and holds a warren of rooms, including a fine great hall on the first floor.
‘Queen Mary’s Room’, also on the first floor, is where Mary is said to have slept when staying at Craigmillar. However, it is more likely she occupied a multi-roomed apartment elsewhere in the courtyard, probably in the east range.
Sir Simon Preston was a loyal supporter of Queen Mary, whom she appointed as Provost of Edinburgh. In this capacity, he was her host for her first night as a prisoner, at his townhouse in the High Street, on 15 June 1567. She was taken to Lochleven Castle the following day.
The west range was rebuilt after 1660 as a family residence for the Gilmour family.
The 15th-century courtyard wall is well preserved, complete with gunholes shaped like inverted keyholes. Ancillary buildings lie within it, including a private family chapel.