HISTORY

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Laura Biagiotti and Romero the winner of the 1994 Italian Open  at Golf Marco Simone

THE HISTORY

At the end of the 70’s Laura Biagiotti and her husband Gianni Cigna fell in love with an old castle in the green countryside of Rome. In the third century AC, it was originally a Roman fortified manor farm, enriched by a tower approximately built in the year 1000 and then completed in the Middle Ages with additional buildings surrounding it, which maintain the same layout of today. When Laura Biagiotti discovered this beauty, it appeared as an abandoned castle. The manor house was initially owned by the Tebaldi family, then by the Cesis. In 1700, the whole property became part of the lineage of the Borghese Princes, and a century later it was sold to the Prince Brancaccio. Laura Biagiotti and Gianni Cigna’s project with Marco Simone couldn’t stop within the Castle’s walls, therefore the whole countryside, over 150 hectares, became a new love for Golf. Laura Biagiotti meant to create a Country Club keeping the gentle and delicate style of the Roman countryside. To this extent, we can find the residences designed with “cotto” bricks and chestnut beams and a golf course of 27 holes fitted for international tournaments, skillfully designed by the American golf architect Jim Fazio. Next to fashion designers and tailors, now proudly stand architects, landscape architects, golf designers, experts of plants and essences. The golf course, the residences, the Club House were born. The nature was exalted, the landscape was preserved and adorned, everything with a “Biagiotti touch”. The 18 holes of the Championship Course flow on the undulated ground “like models on the catwalk”.

Marco Simone Golf & Country Club is a paradise for both adults and children. While walking through the holes, it is not rare to encounter animals enjoying an uncontaminated area. Porcupines, foxes, pheasant and herons are just some of the creatures living in the Marco Simone’s natural oasis. Thousands of plant species, make the flora and landscape unique just as the several views from the holes on St Peter’s Dome, offering an experience that adds excitement to the game.

“An act of love born in the thoughts of my husband Gianni Cigna and I around the Mid 90’s: this is the way I define the Marco Simone Golf & Country Club”

Laura Biagiotti.

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THE CASTLE

The Castle of Marco Simone rises a few kilometers from Rome and was built approximately in the year 1000. Some sections, such as the tower, were even constructed previously. Only in 1547 Simon de’ Baldi and his son Marco Simone transformed it, giving it its name: Marco Simone Castle. To discover the real origins we still should go further back in time where Cardinal Federico Cesi converted the castle into his summer residence. Then followed his great nephew, Duke of Acquasparta (founder of the Accademia dei Lincei) which embellished it with frescos and placed marble letters, as a sign of his presence, on the top of the tower. When Laura Biagiotti and her husband Gianni Cigna bought it, there were mainly ruins. Laura Biagiotti loves to say “The house was waiting for me and perhaps destiny made me accomplish the big step, in the late 1970s. I always had noticed the house, every single time I was nearby for work (meaning very often). That abandoned place was not insignificant to me. I firmly believe that, the “genius loci” of this ancient castle intensively involve me, because I couldn’t bear to see that castle in ruins”. In fact, the hard work which involved Laura and Piero Pinto, who supervised the restructuring, resulted in a considerable success. Marco Simone Castle is now a national monument and the restoration was carried out in association with the Italian Government’s Fine Arts Service.

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ROMAN VILLA

In Marco Simone Golf & Country Club stands a Roman villa with polychrome mosaics just next to the Marco Simone Castle. The living spaces and the baths of the ancient residence have luxurious black and white and polychrome mosaics with geometric patterns and plant motifs. The villa also has a burial site with the remains of a square mausoleum at its center. The oldest part of the villa dates back to the late Republican epoch, while the newer addition, embellished with mosaics and marble, is from the Hadrian Era.