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Poggio a Caiano

Villa Medicea/Medici's Villa

Villa Medicea/Medici's Villa

Description

The town of Poggio a Caiano is an authentic crossroads between Florence and Pistoia, on one side, and the Montalbano, on the other. The village developed during the Early Middle Age and thanks to its strategic position, became an important centre for the river trading of the products coming from Prato. In 1420 the Castle of Poggio a Caiano was under the jurisdiction of the Cancellieri's family, who added to the building a garden. Later the Cancellieri gave the castle, by the time transformed in a villa, to the Strozzi's family. At the end of the XV century the Medici's family got the possession of the Villa, established by Lorenzo de' Medici and entrusted to the architect Giovanni da Sangallo. It became the summer residence of the Florentine family and was also the protagonist of the Medici's history.
The Medici Stables, situated next to the road that leads from Poggio a Caiano to Prato, were built according to a design by Niccolò Tribolo and completed around 1548. On the ground floor, the building is organized around vaulted naves, which were used to stable the horses, while the second floor has a central gallery with side rooms where the knights were boarded. The impressive dimensions of the central hall make it seem to be a kind of secular basilica which transcends the function for which it was built.
Among the religious monuments, we have to mention the Church of Santa Maria del Rosario, with a beautiful painting by Alessandro Allori, "L'Incoronazione della vergine", and the ancient Church of San Francesco (XII century).

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