The Medici Villa di Cafaggiolo was built as a fortress, with a watchtower similar to that of the nearby Villa del Trebbio. It was Cosimo the Elder who wanted to transform the villa using the work of the architect Michelozzo, who had already worked on the Trebbio Villa as well. An impressive fortified building with strategically articulated spaces was created, equipped with towers, walls with openings for crossbows and arquebuses and a drawbridge with attached moats for the defence and military control of the territory.
Cosimo the Elder devoted himself to organising the large area surrounding the house, used as a hunting lodge, structuring the lands, the roads, the gardens and the woods around it, where even rare animals were found in their wild state.
With Lorenzo the Magnificent, the Mugello residence later became a true holiday location one and industrious study, hosting illustrious writers such as Pico della Mirandola, Marsilio Ficino and Agnolo Poliziano, tutor of Giovanni de' Medici, the future Pope Leo X.
After the unification of Italy, in 1865 the villa was sold by the Italian state to the Borghese family Princes, who carried radical Renaissance-style renovation works. The English-style landscape garden built in the nineteenth century at the back of the villa, with a large lawn in front, is characterized by two large Lebanon cedars, which are often found in Medici gardens.