Culture Village

Growing up with a famous sibling…

What is it like when you grown up with a famous sibling? This is what happened to Spello, the little sister of Assisi. All the attention went to Assisi, and still does. However, this has been a blessing in disguise for Spello. For this reason Spello is one of the best-preserved medieval towns in Umbria, famous for its flowers, cuisine, fine wines and olive oil. Spello is officially classified as one of the most beautiful villages in Italy. As well as the village itself and the Roman and medieval monuments, there are many important artworks, o.a. a fresco by Pinturicchio in the Church of Santa Maria Maggiore which is the most important sight in the village. However, much of the pleasure of staying in Spello is simply wandering through the narrow streets of the old town, taking in the atmosphere

Places to visit

Porta Consolare (Consular Gate). This ancient gate dates to Roman times and is beautiful and imposing.

Porta Venere is another ancient gate in Spello with the imposing towers called Torri di Properzio. The gate and towers are open at the weekend in the summer season only, usually morning and evening. 

Villa of the Mosaics 

The Villa of the Mosaics in Spello is one of the most extraordinary archaeological discoveries in Umbria. The nearly 500 square metres recovered site include 10 rooms with amazing mosaic floors of geometric decorations, wild and fantastic animals, human figures and scenes of life. Stone ‘carpets’ of rare beauty.

Civic and Diocesan Art Gallery 

The art collection is located in the rooms of the Palazzo dei Canonici. The works on display include some magnificent examples of Gothic and Baroque jewellery, an interesting section of Medieval and Renaissance wooden sculpture and paintings ranging from the late 13th to the 18th Century with some superb examples: a triptych by the Master of the Assumption of Amelia, a diptych by Cola Petruccioli, some panels of the choir by Zaccaria di Filippo Mazzola, brother of the more famous Mannerist painter Parmigianino, and a splendid fresco by Andrea d'Assisi called Ingegno.

The many churches of Spello:

Capella Tega; a small chapel with frescoes from the XIV century

Collegiata di Santa Maria Maggiore, a wonderful church from the 1200s especially famous for stunning paintings by Pinturicchio, Perugino and some Deruta ceramics.. 

Cappella Baglioni, Spello’s most significant chapel which is known for its Renaissance frescoes by Pinturicchio  (1500). Also worth seeing is the little Hortus, the garden beside the church.

Sant’Andrea, which has a stunning frescoed chapel with beautiful blue vaults.

Church of San Lorenzo has interesting woodwork and outside the city walls visitors can admire the Romanesque church of San Claudio and Villa Fidelia.

Finestre, balconi e vicoli fioriti 

Spello has a long-lasting tradition taking place each summer between May and mid-August: a flower competition that sees the town’s alley compete with one another for the most beautiful flower display. The facades, steps and courtyards are decorated with flowers of all colors.  The result is an extravaganza of colors and smells that make the town an absolute delight. 

Infiorata di Spello (June)

Infiorata is a very ancient tradition; the streets get covered in flower art and turn into real canvases colored by flowers of all types!

Shops

The best things to buy in Spello is food, Deruta ceramics and Acqua di Spello (which is a local production). 

Accommodation

Limone: 1 bedroom apartment (2 pax) 

La Casetta: 2 bedroom Cottage  (3 pax)

il Cortille : 1 bedroom Town house : young family (two adults and two small children).

Casa Giardino: 3 bedroom house (6 pax)

Villa Buonanotte Barbanera: 3 bedrooms villa (6 pax)

Secret Option No, 6: Rent them all together for a group of 20 people! 

Restaurants

La Cantina - Bursting with the joy of great food in a beautiful ambiance.

Via Cavour, 2 – Tel. 0742 651775 – closed on Monday, open for lunch & dinner 

Vinosofia - A cosy place to taste and to buy local and organic wine. Brenda also serves tea, coffee and juices, all organic and from local producers. Here you will also find some interesting cook books and souvenirs from Umbria

Via Maddalena 1/A

Il Pinturicchio - Mirko and his wife have created an authentic Umbrian restaurant featuring fresh and healthy food.

Largo G. Mazzini, 8 – tel. 0742 301784 – closed on Sunday evening and Tuesday, open for lunch & dinner

Bar Tullia - “Gelato tastes a lot like ice cream, but it’s just better for some reason.” – Winston Churchill –
My favourite is the home made gelato of Assunta.

Largo Mazzini, closed on Monday

For more information check out the Spello Travel Guide (coming soon!) 

 


Olivia Green