Partinico is a town to the north-west of Sicily, near Palermo. Although the town is relatively recent compared to some in the region it is rich in religious and civil buildings of historical and artistic interest.
Start your visit in Piazza Duomo in the Old Town where there is a fountain in the late Baroque style dating from the early 18th century.
The main church of Partinico is also found here in the Piazza Duomo. It has a single nave and was built in the mid-16th century, then further enlarged and restored in later centuries with the construction of the bell tower in the 18th century and other changes in the early 19th century.
The main altar has fluted columns and Corinthian capitals supporting a triangular pediment of classical style, while the main façade is of Renaissance style. In the church note in particular a picture in the first arch of the right aisle depicting the 'Assunta', by Antonio Spatafora.
Antonio Spatafora is a native painter of Palermo and for this reason known as “The ‘Panormita’” [from Latin “Panormus”=Palermo].
Also worthy of particular attention are two 17th century paintings, probably by the Lombard School and depicting "Saint Mary Magdalene in prayer" and "Santa Rosalia in ecstasy." The paintings of "St. Joseph sleeping" and "Christ among the apostles" are attributed to Vincenzo Manno (1750-1827?).
As you explore Partinico you will discover several other churches:
The Carmelo Church has a single nave and was restored in the early 19th century. In the church there are several works by V. Manno, such as "Our Lady of Carmelo" and the "Holy Family."
The Church of St. Leonardo, built in the first half of the 17th century, stands out for its bell tower with a spire covered with tiles with representations of the lives of the saints. Inside the church there is the "Ascension of St. Augustine," by Pietro Novelli, a native painter of Monreale and therefore called "The Monrealese" (1603 - 1647), influenced by A. van Dyck (1599-1641) and who worked in Palermo between 1622 and 1624.
The small Church of S. Maria degli Angeli, built in 1617, also contains some valuable works of art. Most remarkable is the canvas of "Madonna with Saints Francis and Rosalie” on the main altar and by Giuseppe Salerno, known as “Lo zoppo di Gangi” [The Crippled of Gangi] (1570-1633), a painter of the late-Mannerist style.
After the churches, you can also visit the Museum, the art gallery (with many works by local artists) and the municipal library. The library holds a collection of books comprising over 10,000 volumes and some incunabula (early pamphlets) of the 15th, 16th and 17th century.
Outside partinico itself you can visit the Albachiara Tower, which was one of several defensive towers which once surrounded Partinico but have now largely disappeared.
One distinctive place to visit is the so-called "Bourbon Winery", built by the Bourbons in the early 19th century and which incorporates a very ancient tower, probably dating from the 13th century.
The Bourbon Winery arose as a centre for the collection and sale of agricultural products from the nearby real estate. On this vast piece of land the Bourbons produced wine, wheat, figs, fruit and vegetables, almonds, barley, beans, grapes, lentils, oats, oil and hay. The winery basement has a large courtyard divided into three sections, and in the middle stands a tower-building with windows that recall the Catalan style.
Next to the building, there is a basement of 1000 square meters, with the main façade of the atrium divided into three naves supported by pillars and cross arches.
What better way to honour the "Royal Bourbon Winery" and its vast production than to sample the simple local dishes of Partinico, prepared according to the old traditions of Partinico and its country, such as the so-called "caponata", “Cannoli” with ricotta and other local specialities.
See also Partinico history and etymology