The Cathedral of Saint Lawrence
The Cathedral of Saint Lawrence (Cattedrale di San Lorenzo) is a Roman Catholic cathedral. It was founded in the High Middle Ages but rebuilt in the late 15th century, with the facade completed in 1517. It is dedicated to Saint Lawrence of Rome.
The Piazza della Reforma ” The Reform Square”
The Piazza della Reforma is Lugano’s main square and is an inviting place for tourists and locals to relax as they enjoy the many bistros and restaurants.
In 1798, Piazza Grande witnessed a battle between the Cisalpini and the Volontari Luganesi, who won Ticino’s independence from the central government established by Napoleon. One year later, in 1799, Piazza Grande staged another historical event: the massacre of Abbot Vanelli, editor of the Gazzetta di Lugano, a progressive newspaper printed at this square by typographer Agnelli.
Palazzo Civico, the seat of the city hall, was built only later, in the years 1842-1844. Due to its location in Piazza della Riforma, further political events took place here. Around 1870, under the Garini arcades, the conservatives made of the newly opened Caffè Federale their meeting place, where liberals clearly were least welcome.
The Parish Church of Sant’Abbondio
The Parish Church of Sant’Abbondio is set away from the village, in a picturesque location. It can be reached via an avenue flanked by cypress trees.
It was documented from as early as 1372 and became a Parish Church in 1530. In front of the facade, slightly to the south, there is a post-Romanic truncated bell tower. The church is an oriented basilica, with a high gabled facade supported by pillars with side volutes. On the volute, there are illusionistic architectural depictions of very high artistic quality, dating back to 1850, and a painting of Our Lady of the Rosary in a chiaroscuro technique, dated to the 18th century, by Giuseppe Antonio Petrini. In the nearby cemetery, the tombstone of architect Pietro Boffa from Montagnola – mainly active in Russia in 1875 – features the “Prayer” sculpture by Vincenzo Vela. Hermann Hesse is also buried in this cemetery.
Church Santa Maria degli Angeli
Designed by world-famous architect Mario Botta, is a marvel of contemporary architecture and features paintings by Enzo Cucchi.
A visit to the church is a “must”. This impressive edifice built on a spur of the mountain offers a place for meditation as well as a new perspective on the landscape.The chapel, built between 1992 and 1996, is dedicated to Santa Maria degli Angeli (Saint Mary of the Angels), and its innovative design represents a new take on religious architecture.
Built of porphyry, it stands on the edge of a slope opening onto an amazing panorama.
The paintings by Enzo Cucchi occupy two main areas – the vault of the footbridge, where there is a tall cypress tree, and the very heart of the church. The deep-blue apse features hands cupped in offering. Twenty-two panels above the windows also continue the Marian iconography.
Capuchin Father Giovanni Pozzi, a leading expert on forms of prayer and spirituality, composed the twenty-two litanies which Enzo Cucchi has translated into attractive and evocative images.
Guided tours in Italian, German, English and French (only by advance booking)