Founded between 1122 and 1138 on the territory of the ancient Marquisate of Saluzzo, the Benedictine Cistercian Abbey had reached in a few decades a considerable economic importance as a place of collection, transformation and exchange of the products of the surrounding countryside, made fertile by the monks with extensive and complex remediation works. The economic importance had brought civil and ecclesiastical privileges to the abbey which made it the reference point for the political and social life of the area.
In 1690 the French, led by General Catinat, invaded the Abbey, destroying the archive, the library, part of the cloister and the refectory; from 1715 to 1734, with the financial help of Vittorio Amedeo II, restoration work was carried out which partially altered the original Gothic forms of the architecture.
With the Papal Bull of Pope Benedict XIV, in 1750, the Abbey and its assets became the property of the Order of Sts. Maurizio and Lazzaro, and erected in the Commenda.
Of the abbey complex, the Church is particularly appreciated, with the Polyptych by Pascale Oddone and the sixteenth-century wooden group of the Crucifixion, the Cloister, the Refectory, with traces of a painting depicting "The Last Supper", the Chapter Room, the Guest House; the other buildings make up the so-called "concentric" of Staffarda, that is the village, which still retains the historic architectural structures functional to agricultural activity, such as the covered market on the square in front of the Abbey and the farmhouses.
The cloister, partly surrounded by a colorful portico with columns, represents the center of monastic life and the connection to most of the convent buildings such as the chapter house, the refectory, and still retains the structure of the ancient wash house for the ablutions of the monks. .
Outside the conventual part there is instead the guesthouse, a room where pilgrims were hosted, the covered market, where trade took place and to the west, as if to constitute a fence, a long series of buildings that make up the real agricultural part. and own of Staffarda, for the most part still in business with cattle breeding and cereal crops typical of the area.