What It’s Like to Live in a Medieval Italian Castle

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Castle living seems pretty glamorous until you realize all the things that can go wrong. The upkeep is tremendous. The WiFi doesn’t travel reliably through those thick stone walls. Misplaced something? You may never find it again.

The highs and lows of medieval castle living is the premise behind The Castle Diary, a breakthrough TikTok account run by Ludovica Sannazzaro. Ludovica lives with her family in their ancestral 12th-century castle in Giarole, Piemonte, where she has spent the months of quarantine chronicling the perceptions and realities of living in a house with a turret, a ballroom, and a dungeon.


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CBS Sunday Morning recently profiled Ludovica and her father Count Giuseppe Sannazzaro, who reveals another difficult side to castle living—trying to make it work as a bed and breakfast. The pandemic has been tough for everyone in the hospitality business. So, his daughter’s TikTok account has been a fun distraction (and marketing vehicle) during these unusual times.

Now that Italy has reopened to tourism, Castello Sannazzaro has resumed guided visits of the castle and grounds. However, it has yet to announce when it will reopen as a bed and breakfast (see reviews). Follow Castello Sannazzaro on Facebook or Twitter for updates.

The Sannazzaro’s castle in Giarole is a member of the Piemontese Castle Association, where you can find more information about castles that are open for visits, special events, or accommodations.

Photo via Castello Sannazzaro

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