There’s nothing more romantic than having a castle wedding; after all it is what fairy tales are made of. Accompany it with evocative Italian scenery, warm nights, great food and wine and you have the perfect wedding day recipe. Internationally renowned wedding planner and Envy Italy editor Rosie Meleady selects her top 10 Italian castles for destination weddings in 2021.
Antica Torre di Via Tornabuoni (Florence)
If you are planning an elopement or small wedding in Italy (less than 30 people), then this may be the perfect castle for you! The ancient castellated tower is right in the heart of Florence, sandwiched between designer stores on one of the most exclusive shopping streets in the city. The rooftop terraces overlook the Arno river and the bigger terrace has a view of the Duomo. It has 25 luxury rooms and suites and inhouse catering, so it is a wonderful little gem for those looking for an exclusive, intimate and sophisticated wedding in Florence. (Click here for information about this castle wedding venue in Florence).
Castello Scaligero of Malcesine (Lake Garda)
While it is only possible to have your legal civil ceremony at Castello Scaligero, I felt it an important castle to include as it is such a wonderful unique backdrop for a wedding ceremony and photos. The castle is a landmark of Lake Garda – standing tall in the centre of Malcesine, it is an easy walk to restaurants and hotels for your wedding reception. You can have an outdoor civil ceremony in the crenellated ramparts overlooking the town and lake. Be sure to get a photo on the castle wall balcony that protrudes over the lake 24 metres below.
With a history of over 2,000 years, CastelBrando is one of the largest and oldest castles in Europe. It stands in the heart of the Prosecco Veneto Hills, between Venice and the Dolomites.
Throughout its history it was home to emperors, queens, counts, warlords and warriors. The castle is surrounded by a park and has a hotel with 80 rooms, suites and apartments; a spa; restaurants; wine cellars; and wine bars. The castle has function rooms which can host weddings for up to 300 guests. Alternatively, on the great courtyard of the castle, with sweeping views over the valley and the village, there is a modern marquee which can host up to 600 people.
Castello Monaci (Puglia)
The castle started out in the 1500s as a settlement of a group of monks who used it as a place of worship, meditation and refuge for the needy. Over time it became the home of noble families who still own it today. Surrounded by vines and ancient olive trees, the white stone of Castello Monaci with massive towers covered with ivy, palm trees and green gardens has beautiful locations for outdoor ceremonies and receptions. The indoor reception areas can seat up to 400 guests and the venue can sleep up to 19 guests.
Castello di Rossino (Lake Como)
Set in the beautiful natural landscape of Lake Como, near Lecco, Castello di Rossino is one of the most antique homes of the Lombardy region. Your wedding reception can be held outside with the fantastic view of Lake Como in the background. The castle has its own catering and can host 120 guests indoors seated for dinner. You can have a civil or symbolic ceremony onsite. While there is no guest accommodation at the castle, it is possible for the bride and groom to stay in the tower suite.
Tabiano Castle (Parma)
Perched among the beautiful hills surrounding Parma is the Castle of Tabiano, this is a stunning castle with gardens, terraces, frescoed halls and ancient cellars. Combined, the estate can accommodate up to 140 people, while the castle can host receptions for up to 400 guests. Nestled among the trees beside the castle is a pretty picturesque Catholic church where couples can exchange their vows and walk the scenic path followed by their guests to their wedding reception at the castle. (Click here to read more about this Castle Wedding venue in Italy).
Castello Odescalchi (Rome)
The majestic Odescalchi Castle, one of the most beautiful and imposing Renaissance castles in Europe, is over 500 years old. While there is no accommodation on site, the castle lies a few kilometres north of Rome where there are plenty of accommodation options. The castle has numerous beautiful locations for your wedding ceremony and reception both indoors and outdoors for up to 1,000 guests. An intriguing tunnel runs between the castle and the Catholic cathedral of St Stephen’s, with its medieval exterior and Baroque-inspired interior, embellished with priceless paintings. The bride can use it to arrive at the church while all the other guests reach their seats in the nave by walking through the medieval hamlet.
Castello di Meleto (Siena)
The history of the castle dates back to the eleventh century. Surrounded by 160 hectares of vineyards, the castle produces its own prestigious wines which are distributed internationally.
At Castello di Meleto the entire noble Piano del Castello (a series of furnished and frescoed rooms), the garden, the splendid terrace overlooking the Chianti hills, and the Stable (for dancing) can be hired for your wedding. By booking its six guest rooms, you have exclusivity of the castle for your wedding.
Castello dal Pozzo (Lake Maggiore)
Originally built by the Visconti d’Aragona family, the elegant ballroom on the ground floor of the Palazzo, decorated with Murano glass chandeliers, marble floors and antique mirrors, offers an elegant venue for a wedding reception. For wedding drink reception options, the castle has a panoramic terrace with a view over Lake Maggiore and surrounding lawns. The wedding castle can host up to 250 guests in a single location. There are rooms onsite offering guests all the modern comforts of a 5 star luxury hotel. Civil, symbolic and religious ceremonies (blessings) can be held onsite.
Xirumi Castle (Sicily)
In Sicily amongst, one of the largest orange and lemon citrus groves in eastern Sicily, stands the Xirumi Castle, a sixteenth-century building owned by the Barons Grimaldi di Serravalle. It has an internal neo-Gothic courtyard, which overlooks the olive oil mill and the millstone. It has a small stone church where it is possible to have a wedding ceremony. The castle recently added an Arab garden focusing on water and light, adding an oriental flavour of enchantment, a beautiful castle for your wedding in Italy!
Main Picture: Wedding at Castello di Vincigliata – while this castle overlooking Florence would normally be in my top 10, it is unfortunately closed for weddings in 2019 and for the foreseeable future.