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Built at the end of the 19th century, it is a truly fascinating building. Erected by the Marquis Mezzacapo in the town of Maiori, it is placed on a rocky spur overlooking the sea.

by Barbara Iovine

If you choose to visit the city of Maiori and its attractions during your tour on the Amalfi Coast, I am sure you won’t help but raise your head to admire the charming Mezzacapo Castle. It was built at the end of the 19th century, and today it is a truly fascinating building. Today, it is a luxurious accommodation facility that, thanks to its elegance and the beautiful view of the city it offers, is requested by tourists from all over the world. Are you ready to find out several curiosities about its history?

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The Mezzacapo Castle

A castle born from a box of matches

The Mezzacapo Castle, also known as Miramare Castle, is a very particular structure located on a rocky spur, and should not be confused with the palace of the same name. Its light colors, together with its harmonious shapes, give it a fantastic touch that makes you think it jumped out of one of those storybooks we loved so much when we were children.
From its charming position, a few steps away from the sea, it calls everyone’s attention since the moment of docking in the port of Maiori.
But do you know why the Mezzacapo family decided to build it?

During his stay in France, one of the bizarre Mezzacapo marquises was fascinated by a castle he visited on the Loire’s banks. So all of a sudden, while he was admiring it, he decided to clone it in his hometown, Maiori. But how to replicate it in the same details as the original one? Sooner said than done, he bought a box of matches that had the French castle image on its package and, once back home, he showed it to the builders.



As beautiful as the castles of the Loire Valley

At the end of the 19th century, the Miramare Castle was ready: it was the exact image of its French cousin, still unchanged today. It stands close to the ancient Torre Mezzacapo, and not far from the Annunziata cave. It is composed of three floors, with three cylindrical turrets with a conical spire both on the front and on the back and a beautiful garden accessible through the aforementioned picturesque tower.
Currently, the complex has become a beautiful accommodation facility, and it is framed between the sea and the mountains, from where it still possible to admire one of the best panoramas in the world.

The Mezzacapo family wanted this castle to be as beautiful and majestic as the one in the Loire. They wanted the people not to be able to take their eyes off the enchanted castle’s shapes, just as it happened to the Marquis during his stay in France.
We can say that the goal has certainly been achieved and that looking at it from below, with a clear sky as a background, makes you dream of living in a fairy world, just like you did as a child. 


  • In the 60s the Castle was used as a restaurant and dance hall: it was famous throughout the Amalfi Coast and was frequented by the celebrities of the time.
  • According to historians, the name of the family comes from an episode in which the founder of the Mezzacapo cut in half the head of a Saracen. He earned for this a nickname, that with time evolved into Mezzacapo (half-head).

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