Corso Vittorio Emanuele, 166, Napoli, 80121 NA, Italia
Every time you look at Naples from the sea on the ferry going to Capri, or you walk towards Piazza Amedeo to have a drink with your buddies, besides the parking restrictions, keep your eyes peeled and spot – in between the many buildings on the hill – that building with a castle shape, which has nothing to do with the ones around it. If you look at it carefully, Aselmeyer castle, or it would be better to say Grifeo castle, is very clear it has nothing to do with the classic architectural style of Neapolitan aristocratic residencies. As it’s written on the plaque at its entrance, Lamont Young built this unusual building in 1902. The Anglo-Neapolitan architect, with his visionary personality, planned it to be a hotel for English tourists as well as his private residence. After he moved to Gaiola isle, he sold it to the rich banker Carlo Aselmeyer, of which it keeps its current name.
Today the building, developed on different blocks spread on different levels, is divided in private apartments, to which you can access through a solid wood front door, exactly as in old castles, and you will be wondering where the ditches with crocodiles are.
This curious building represents one of the greatest examples of a Neo-medieval architecture, and it shows visible references to England, with its classic gothic atmosphere, mysterious and a little bit “rainy”, but also its liberty style, which makes everything so unique.
This castle has many peculiarities, and its location is one of those: basically it grabs on to the tuff batch of the Neapolitan hill and it looks like almost it wants to fly away.
You will be surprised not just by its outside. If you are lucky enough to enter it, after its huge entrance, you can have access to its upper levels, where you will be able to find polished and richly decorated spaces, but mostly you will be enraptured by its incredible suspended gardens in Babylonian style, which greet each visitor to its final treat: the breath taking panorama on the Gulf of Naples. This view will make you remember to be in a city with a thousand sides and so many beautiful things to be discovered.
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