Russian prince Nicolai Demidoff donated a hospital to Bagni di Lucca to enable the people of the town to benefit from the thermal waters. It was built in 1825.
He also commissioned the tiny chapel across the stream from the hospital. The Demidoff chapel was designed by Giacomo Marrucci and was inspired by the Pantheon in Rome.
There was originally a wooden bridge across to the chapel, but it was destroyed by a flood in 1836. The current stone bridge was built soon after by the son of the prince and designed by Giuseppe Pardini.
The little chapel looks stunning in any season, but particularly when covered with snow.
Here is an early photo of the chapel, before the surrounding trees had grown.
The hospital is now Villagio Globale, a popular place for those wishing to enjoy the thermal waters. You will find Villagio Globale and the chapel in Ponte a Serraglio, on the road towards Granaiola.
It is a little jewel. A magnificent gift from Prince Demidoff, a great benefactor. Bagni di Lucca needs more like him.
It is a delightful little jewel. I wonder how many visitors find it tucked away in its little corner.
Great bit of history Debra
There is much history in Bagni di Lucca…one of the reasons we love it.
Definitely a subtle gem nestled in the scenery. I imagine many people see it and wonder about it, yet know nothing of its past.
I’m sure they have no idea about the chapel. Perhaps there could be a sign telling its history.
Just beautiful. I have visited Bagni di Lucca, but didn’t see this gem. Thanks for sharing.
It is tucked in a little corner and can be easily missed.
Looking forward to exploring it in February
It is about 5 minutes walk from your house.
We wondered around the little chapel…is it ever opened on special occasions for visitors to enjoy?
The little chapel in the snow is so pretty!