Inside the abandoned castle which used to be Europe's largest drug lab

Take a peek inside the abandoned 17th-century castle that looks like something out of a fairy tale and was once home to Europe’s largest drug lab after it got into disarray.

The impressive palace called Castello di Sammezzano is located in Tuscany and covers more than 170,000 square meters, including more than 150 rooms, caves, fountains and even artificial caves.

However, the impressive castle, built in the 17th century by Spanish nobles, was abandoned about 20 years ago after it was taken over by an international drug ring in the 1980s and expanded to become the largest heroin laboratory on the continent.

In one of the reception rooms in the castle

In one of the guest houses and in one of the towers, the group installed two workshops that they used as laboratories for the manufacture of the drug.

When the police finally searched the lock, they found four local pharmacists behind armored doors and arrested them all and the owner immediately. To date, it is the largest illegal drug laboratory ever discovered in Europe.

Prior to the drug scandal, the palace belonged to several different owners after the former owner was found guilty of fraudulent bankruptcy in the 1930s.

The hallway of the palace

The hallway of the palace

After World War II, the castle was converted into a hotel-restaurant where some famous faces stayed, including a visit from Emperor Charlemagne – also known as Charlemagne.

The Castello di Sammezzano has been abandoned over the past two decades, but has remained in near-pristine condition and looks just as incredible today as it did when construction began.

Although built by the Spaniards, the castle has clear influences from both Italy and Morocco thanks to its vibrant colors, lush decor and ceramic tile mosaics.

In fact, the stunning building is so beautiful that it has shown a number of famous films, including 2012’s The Tale of Tales, starring Salma Hayek and Vincent Cassel.

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