Artimino is well-known for the Medici-Villa La Ferdinanda. The village is nestling among the beautiful tuscan hills, in the wine-growing area Vino di Carmignano, an area that already Cosimo de' Medici appreciated.
The most beautiful villa of the Medici-family is only a few minutes away, at Poggio a Caiano. In only 15 minutes by car one can reach Prato the capital of the province, Montelupo Fiorentino, Empoli or Vinci. Florence the town of art and culture is only 20 minutes away.
The Etruscan origins
Artimino, or Artumena as the Etruscans called the place, was already in the 8th century before Christ of great importance. This is also generated by the numerous Etruscan burial chambers that were found in the area around Comeano, Poggio a Caiano and Artimino.
After the decline of the Etruscan reign followed the Romans. Already under the domination of the Romans, were cultivated wine and olives. Even today, the high presence of the Romans of one time is still visible in the names of the villages or the farmhouses.
The Middle Ages
The castle of Artimino was erected in the 10th century. Because of its strategic position, half way between Florence and Pistoia, it was always distputed by these two towns. In the middle of the 14th century Artimino fell under the Florentine domination.
Cosimo I. de' Medici purchased in the middle of the 16th century the whole hilly area and the woods around Artimino. There, he wanted to create the royal shoot, the Parco Reale (engl. royal park), at that time called Barco. The park was extending from the feet of the hills around Artimino until Vinci and should be enclosed by a wall to prevent the game to escape or to be protected from poaches.
In the middle of the 15th century hunting was quite lucrative, because it didn't only bring in meat, but also valuable leather and skin.
Then, Ferdinando I. bought the cultivable area and the houses of Artimino, to accommodate the royal "Fattoria" (engl. estate).
Grand duke Ferdinando I. didn't love Artimino only because of the hunt, but also for its mild climate, as he wrote in one of his letters to his wife Christina of Lorraine, the 3rd of January 1596: "My Royal Highness, today I was at Artimino and believe me, it was as if I had found the spring."
One day as Ferdinando I. was on the top of the hill, he called the architect Bernardo Buontalenti and said: "Exactly around this place, where you can see me now, I would like to have a palace big enough for me and the whole court; I ask you to take care of it, but move on."
In 1594 the Grand Duke with his court could move to the Villa "La Ferdinanda".
The Medici-Villa "La Ferdinanda"
The Medici-Villa La Ferdinanda has a rectangular form with towers on both sides, similar to the ones of a fortified castle. The villa is named because of the numerous chimneys Villa dei cento camini (engl. Villa of the hundred chimneys). In total there are 56 rooms. Part of the rooms are elegant ballrooms, function suites that can be rented for important conferences or celebrations and furthermore small chapels, wine cellars and the Etruscan museum.
Part of the villa are also two adjacent buildings of the same time as the villa. The nearest building was called once, because of its structure, Corridoio (corridor) and is known today under Paggeria. This building was one time the accommodation of pages, grooms and servants and is today the Hotel Paggeria Medicea. The second building the "Palazzo del Sig. Biagio Pignatta" has the same architectonic style as the Paggeria. The name derives from the butler of Grand Duke Ferdinando I. that was living there on the first floor. On the ground floor were located the riding-stables of the court. Today, there is the Restaurant Biagio Pignatta , where one can taste the delicious local and the international cuisine, accompanied by the fantastic Artimino-wine.
The wine and olive oil production takes place at the Fattoria in the medieval village that is 400 m from the villa away.
In the village are also located, in antique stone buildings, the exclusive holiday apartments of Artimino.
Artimino has a total of 732 hectars, of which
70 hectars exposed towards South are employed for wine-growing with vines such as Sangiovese, Canaiolo, Cabernet Sauvignon, Trebbiano, San Colombana, Mammolo, Occhio di Pernice. Here are created famous wines like the Barco Reale or the famous Vin Santo.
Over about 180 ha land are spread out the olive groves. The cold pressed oil has a superb quality. All these farm products can be tasted with delicious snacks in the Cantina del Redi and in the Salone di Bacco at the Artimino village. It is also possible to purchase the products in our farm shop.