Photos: Ancient Grimaldi strongholds in Calabria welcome Prince Albert with open arms

Less than a year since his last visit to the beautiful Italian region, Prince Albert II of Monaco has headed back to Calabria on a mission to tour the newest members of the Grimaldi Historic Sites network.  

The Prince of Monaco regularly makes trips to the places historically linked to his family as a way of strengthening the cultural and community ties between the more than 125 towns and villages across France and Italy that were once connected to the Grimaldis. 

Prince Albert departed on one such trip from 3rd to 4th October, heading south to Calabria on a visit to three places that have now been welcomed into the fold of the Grimaldi Historic Sites network.  

Taurianova, Terranova Sappo Minulio and Seminara

On the first day of his trip, he visited Taurianova, a place ruled over by Grimaldis in the 15th century. There he met the mayor, Rocco Biasi, and together they unveiled the sign designating the town as part of the network.  

Also on the agenda in Taurianova was a tour of Palazzo Contestabile, ahead of a dinner with Biasi and the mayors of the other two destinations on his list – Terranova Sappo Minulio and Seminara – as well as the three former Grimaldi strongholds of Gerace, Cittanova and Molochio, which were visited by the sovereign on a similar endeavour last year.  

On 4th October, Prince Albert moved on to Terranova Sappo Minulio, where he met with Mayor Ettore Tigani and unveiled the sign making the village a Grimaldi Historic Site. The Prince was treated to a violin and piano concert at the Palazzo della Storia, dell’Arte e della Cultura and took a trip to the local church, the Maria Santissima Assunta. 

He moved onto Seminara in the afternoon, which was a Grimaldi-led town in the 16th century. Giovanni Piccolo, the mayor, joined the Prince as he unveiled the Grimaldi Historic Site sign at the town’s entrance and inaugurated a plaque that was placed at the town hall to celebrate his trip. Piccolo also made Prince Albert an honorary citizen.  

The Basilica Santuario Maria Santissima dei Poveri was the Monegasque Prince’s next stop, a church destroyed by an earthquake in 1908 and rebuilt in 1922. His day ended with a stop at the Calabria Ceramics Museum, “which traces the centuries-old history of this ancient tradition and craftsmanship which has made this village world famous”. 

Click on the images below to see more from his trip: 


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