The Corveglia Castle - Agriturismo Daij Gépolìn - is located on the current territory of Villanova d’Asti in the beautiful countryside of the Poirino plateau. After a skilful restoration work, it has now become a restaurant where you can taste typical local specialties and host events and ceremonies between fourteenth-century capitals and fifteenth-century ceilings
Castello di Corveglia History
In 1001, the emperor Otto III donated Curtis Vetula to the Benedictines of San Felice di Pavia: a estate that corresponds to the current territory of Villanova d'Asti. Probably the toponym derived from a Roman court, at the time already disappeared, and so far never located. The nuns founded Villa "Nova", and erected the monastery of San Felice, where they settled.
Towards 1150, the noble Ruffino di Ferrere, recognizing a nod to the nuns, founded a hospital named after St. James in the west of Villanova, run by Augustinian canons, endowing it with a huge patrimony. The medieval "hospitali" did not serve the care of the sick, but to house, at a preferential price, the Christian pilgrims qualified by a safe-conduct. In a time when the territories were also controlled through religious foundations, the Marquis of Saluzzo, not far away, had established the Cistercian Abbey of Casanova. The lords of Ferrere, vassals of the Municipality of Asti, founding Corveglia and submitting it to the Bishop of that city, perhaps they wanted to counter the influence.
The Marquis Manfredo di Romagnano, who despite the title resided in Pancalieri, threatened by the surrounding potentates, also used Corveglia to protect himself. In 1153 it gave the hospital numerous dependencies in its lands and moved its interests beyond the Po. Thus favored, intercepting numerous pilgrims between Rome and France, Corveglia equipped itself with a large church with a bell tower, enlarged the hospital and increased the heritage. However, the spread of an institution subject to another diocese irritated the Bishop of Turin. The Romagnanis, then, in 1173 founded Santa Maria di Lombriasco in the image of San Giacomo, on which it initially depended. By submitting it to the bishop of Turin instead of Asti and making it autonomous at the price of a census in Corveglia, the conflicts resolved. San Giacomo, however, even without the Romagnanos, grew throughout the thirteenth century, coming to rival Sant'Antonio di Ranverso.
In 1215 the nuns, in liquidity crisis, ceded Villanova to the Municipality of Asti. Corveglia, by now had its own territory, perhaps redeemed previously. The census due to the Benedictines was however also recognized to the people of Asti.
In the 14th century Corveglia was involved in the disputes between the Solaro Guelphs and the De Castello Ghibellines, who fought over Asti. Faithful to the Solaros, it suffered the insults of the neighboring Saluzzo, pro-Ghibelline, and Acaja, passed to that faction after having opposed it. The climate of confrontation and, in 1316, the Pope's transfer to Avignon, compromised the hospital's activity. In 1340, moreover, the fall of the Solaros opened the doors to the Visconti of Milan, bringing new war to Corveglia, where the territories in the Visconti sphere bordered those of the Savoy who, subdued by the Acaja, headed the anti-Milanese league.