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The Gardens of Palazzo Estense
Palazzo Estense and its gardens are the result of Francesco III D’Este’s passion for the town of Varese.
Legend has it that the Duke of Modena and Governor of the Duchy of Milan was so enchanted with Varese that he begged the Empress Maria Theresa of Austria to entrust it to his rule. His request was granted, Varese was to be his fiefdom although it was not be passed down to his heirs, but would revert to the imperial crown.
And this is where the villa’s history begins: the Duke bought it in 1765 and entrusted architect Giuseppe Bianchi with the renovations necessary to turn it into his summer residence.
The gardens behind the villa were transformed into French formal gardens and Italian gardens inspired by the grounds of the royal residence of Schönbrunn.
One of the park’s main attractions is the parterre, lined with flowerbeds and low growing plants, where the main fountain is located. Together with the grounds of Villa Mirabello, the Palazzo Estense gardens are now open to the public, with hundreds of visitors admiring their beauty daily.
Open: all year
Opening times: variable