The Reggia of Quisisana, in Castellammare di Stabia, was built in the 13th century by the House of Anjou as a royal summer residence and sanatorium. Its current structure is due to the renovations carried out by Charles III of Bourbon (aka Charles III of Spain) between 1765 and 1790. The complex was built as a “hunting lodge and summer residence” and in the shape of an L, so that on one side it was possible to enjoy a magnificent view over the Gulf, and on the other it was better connected with Castellammare.
During the period that followed, the gardens were extended and renovated on the example of an English landscape garden. Large tree-lined walks, staircases, fountains and jeux d’eau exploited the luxuriant vegetation and the springs on the slopes of Mount Faito to create a spectacular scenery. The Reggia was so famous that it attracted many travellers and foreign personalities to the area. Its magnificence was celebrated by Hackert and Dahl’s watercolours and engravings as well as by the landscapes of the School of Posillipo.
In the early 2000s, after decades of neglect, the building was extensively renovated. The restoration works were ended in 2009 and brought back the palace to its ancient splendour. Today, a major enhancement project run by the Archaeological Park of Pompeii is aimed at turning the Reggia into a museum devoted to the rich Roman villas in Castellammare di Stabia. The museum should house the magnificent frescoes and findings currently kept at the Antiquarium.
Visitors will also have access to the “heart” of the museum: the collections kept in the large storage of the palace, which will also host the new findings of the scientific researches carried out in the area.
The site is currently closed and is property of the Comune of Castellammare di Stabia; the duties of conservation and safeguarding lies with the Archaeological Park of Pompeii.