The Hotel Cavalieri del Mare lies on the ancient road del Sale which connected the Duchy of Massa Carrara with the Duchy of Modena Parma, at Km.1. The Road of Salt (del Sale) was covered by merchants and pilgrims and it was named “road of salt” because of the trade of this precious material.
The Hotel was originally a noble family villa, a hunting summer residence belonging to the Sforza family. This family was among the most important families in Italy for long time holding the Duchy of Milan. In the Hotel you can still see the features of the 17C. villa originally devoid of the lateral wings.You can admire the inscription on the ancient sundial : “ horas non numero nisi serenas” “I keep count only of the serene hours”.The present dependance, as you can see from the broad arches masterly brought back on view, was used as stable for the horses. In the rooms are still well kept several attics with middle beams dating back to 1700. Particularly valuable and elegant is the staircase which was handmade on blocks of marble cipollino also dating back to 1700.
Among famous guests we can mention Gabriele D’Annunzio, Micheloni whose verses inscribed on marble are visible on the facade of the Hotel:
“e tutta la Versilia, ecco s’indora d’una soavità
che il cor dilania. Mai fosti bella, ahimè,
come in quest’ora ultima, o Pania!”
“Salve Alpi della mia terra
dove arriva il profumo del mare,
bianchi di marmi e neve,
rosse di sole che muore.”
In the park you can admire holmoaks and maritime pines, in the front garden you can find a well of white marble of Carrara dating back to 1600 and a dome shaped well made with bricks dating back to 1000.