Brief history

Palazzo Guglielmo is just one of the many aristocratic medieval palaces located in the Terra d’Otranto area, all witnessing the economic power of this land during the historical period from the late 17th century to the birth of the Kingdom of Italy.
history 17-06
There are no clear evidences of when Palazzo Guglielmo was built. It seems that the first owners were the Rossi barons, the last feudal lords before the abolition of the feudal regime in 1806. During the XVIII century the ownership of the Palazzo reverted to the Guglielmo’s family who kept the property till the first years of XXI century. Don Pippi Guglielmo inherited from his father a huge amount of properties, scattered all over the Salento area, including fields and many kinds of cattle and flock. Thank to his wisely administration of the legacy, the Palazzo became the economic and social centre of the village.
In the courtyard of the Palazzo arrived the harvests from all the properties; at the beginning they were mainly corn, oil and wine. The ground floor was used for the offices and the warehouses to put the olive oil, the wine and the food coming from the fields. The rooms where our guests stay, used to be the kitchen and the laundry. Here the housekeepers washed the laundry with hot water and ashes or prepared the cheese using fresh milk. This floor was crowded by housekeepers, workers and farmers that from the early morning worked in the garden or in the lounge.
Men and women were involved in different activities, among which the maintenance of the palace and of the warehouses. The present breakfast room was originally a horse stable, while the swimming pool area was full of chickens and rabbits. Granaries and storerooms were located in the cellar under the courtyard and all the rooms.
history 17-01
The importance of Palazzo grew during the years, especially after II World War, when the family started to deal with politics and administration. In 1948 Don Pippi became mayor of the town. During the 50’s the tobacco was introduced so that the Palace was enlarged in order to work the new product until reaching the present shape. Some new rooms were built on the eastern side of the building including the tobacco warehouse (Via Napoli), where for many years the local women worked During the same period the bridge on Via Napoli was built. This bridge was a private passage between the palace and the tobacco and wine warehouses.