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Located in a magnificent position, Imperia owes its name to the river Impero, that separates Oneglia from Porto Maurizio, which once were rival villages but are today merged in a sole municipality. Porto Maurizio, clung to the Parasio promontory, already in the Middle Ages a vital economic and trade center, owned by the Benedictine monks, was in the past a free commune. Oneglia, instead, founded after the year one thousand, feud of the bishop of Albenga, subsequently sold to the Genoese family of the Dorias, in 1576 was assigned to the Savoias.
Through the centuries, the rivalry between these two centers was expressed through a highly commercial competition, the rights of feud between the families, the different administrative organization, due to the loyalty of Porto Maurizio to the Genoese and Oneglia to the Savoias. The overcoming of this rivalry dates back to 1923 and finds evidence in the municipality palace that was built on an equidistant location on the road that unites the two centers.
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