Taormina Palazzo Ciampoli, is the most recent of the mediaeval mansions in Taormina, since its origin dates back to the beginning of the 15th century. The year in which this splendid mansion was built was 1412 and the coat-of-arms above its main entrance portal bears this date.
In 1926 the “Palazzo Vecchio” Hotel was built in the gardens of Palazzo Ciampoli and architecturally the hotel vaguely recalled the famous “Palazzo Vecchio” or “Palazzo della Signoria” in Florence.
Until a few years ago, Palazzo Ciampoli housed one of Taormina’s most famous night clubs, “Sesto Acuto”, named after the ogival arches which ornate the building according to the Gothic style that it recalls.
Since two coats-of-arms, one with a shield and a flag, the other with a shield and three stars, can be found in both Palazzo Ciampoli and Palazzo Corvaja, the former is thought to have been owned by the Corvaja family before being passed on to the Ciampoli family.
The only noticeable part of Palazzo Ciampoli is its front prospect resting on a set of wide and steep steps which act as its natural base. Originally there was a large open courtyard in front of the building but all that remains of it today is a round-arched portal with its base in Taormina marble and two bas-reliefs of the heads of roman emperors in the corners above the arch.
The mansion was hit and destroyed by bombings in 1943. The above-mentioned portal, however, was later reconstructed with the same marble slabs that had collapsed. The Catalan architecture in Palazzo Ciampoli is easily recognized.
Taormina Palazzo Ciampoli, the structure of the building has Spanish characteristics: in its short northern prospect there is a single window whose arch is outlined by an architrave-panel with lobes connected to form festoons sculptured all along it. The top of its main prospect is ornated with small triangular merlons which, however, are not as majestic as the swallow-tailed merlons to be found on the other mediaeval constructions in Taormina.