Interest in the Marche region is on the rise – and this is no surprise. A combination for history, influence, nature and experience makes the Marche one of the most culturally interesting regions in Italy. Just to mention a few figures: there are approximately 100 cities of art, about 500 squares, more than 1000 monuments, 37 fortresses, 106 castles, thousands of Churches (200 of which in Romanesque style), 96 well-preserved abbeys, 183 sanctuaries, 34 archeological sites and 72 historically important theaters. And if these are not enough, it has the highest density of museums and art galleries in Italy! [Official data from the Marche region].
Thanks to such a prestigious heritage, the Marche is the ideal region for a number of special events, and today we want to explore the idea of Corporate Team Building through an artistic treasure hunt!
A scavenger hunt is not only fun, it also allows team members to communicate, create strategies and bond. The essential ingredients are: a mission, a period of time during which to achieve the goals, clues and… the playing field! In a beautiful and rich region like the Marche, participants would have to follow clues in order to solve puzzles regarding the architecture and historic protagonists that shaped the surroundings.
The itinerary of the team-building adventure includes some the most iconic cities of art in central Italy, although they are still relatively unknown abroad.
The treasure hunt can start under the amazing sunrise or sunset lights of the seaside town of Ancona, which is the capital city of the region. It was founded by the Dorians in the 4th century BC. Among its most important monuments are the Cathedral of St. Cyriacus – an extraordinary Romanesque monument that soars over the harbor; the Arch of Trajan; and the Lazzaretto, an 18th-century lighthouse designed by architect Luigi Vanvitelli on an artificial island as quarantine station for people with leprosy.
Next, we move on to charming Urbino, where the cultures of Humanism and the Renaissance combine. It became the privileged place of the refined society of the 16th century, described by Baldassarre Castiglione in “The Book of the Courtier”. This walled city is a World Heritage Site for its remarkable historical legacy, especially under the patronage of Federico da Montefeltro, duke of Urbino in the 1400s. It hosts the University of Urbino, founded in 1506, and features the majestic Ducal Palace, home to the National Gallery of the Marche offering some of the most important collections of Renaissance art in the world.
Nearby is Pesaro, where the treasure hunt follows the musical notes of its most illustrious citizen, composer Gioachino Rossini. During the Renaissance, the town was ruled by the houses of Malatesta, Sforza and Della Rovere. Under the latter family, Pesaro saw its most flourishing age, with the construction of numerous palaces and the erection of a new line of walls (the Mura Roveresche). The city hots the annual Rossini opera Festival and the International Festival of the New Cinema.
Another popular festival – the Sferisterio Opera Festival – takes place in Macerata, a town surrounded by its sixteenth-century bastions. The old city center features a number of striking places, including the Loggia dei Mercanti with its two-tier arcades from the Renaissance, and Palazzo Ricci and its modern art gallery.
The treasure hunt will take participants to the amazing Eneide Hall (Palazzo Buonaccorsi) with paintings and frescoes from the 18th century. The itinerary would not be complete without a visit to the Carriages Museum and to the Neoclassical-style Cathedral.
From the top of Girfalco hill in the town of Fermo, you can enjoy spectacular views stretching from the sea to the peaks of the Sibillini Mountains. The medieval town, once an ancient Roman Colony, hosts a historic library and civic gallery in Piazza del Popolo. It is also home to Teatro dell’Aquila, one of the most beautiful – among the about 70 – historical theatres in The Marche.
Finally, we reach the southern part of the Marche. Bordering Abruzzo is Ascoli Piceno – or the city of the hundred towers: according to traditional accounts, it was home to more than two hundred towers in the Middle Ages, while today there are about 50 to be seen. The old city center is built in Travertino marble, a grey-hued stone extracted from the surrounding mountains. Its central Renaissance square, Piazza del Popolo is considered one of the most beautiful in Italy, and stands between superb examples of Romanesque and Gothic styles.
Are you planning a corporate retreat and team-building trip in Italy? Contact Italian Special Occasions DMC now for a customized quotation!
Il Lazzaretto, Ancona – image from ilmarchigianodoc.com
Urbino, image from marchetravelling.com
Pesaro, image by Florian Prischl
Eneide Hall, Macerata – image from musei.marche.it