Report - Villa Sgaravatti, Albano Terme, North Italy

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28DL Regular User
Regular User
Jan 15, 2013
1. The History:
Situated in the countryside close to Giarre di Albano Terme, the Venitian Villa of Sgaravatti was built circa 1552, according to the façade of the villa. The courtyard complex is formed by the main building, the arches, the tower and the little oratory. The tiny church at the rear and the stables were added at the end of the 18th century. The tower is arguably the most impressive feature of the complex, was built in different periods, evident from its different architectural styles; the part containing the interior staircase ends with a cornice indicating eighteenth-century construction, while the upper section with exterior stairs, railings and a belvedere hints at nineteenth century Romanesque stylings.

It was owned by the Dondi dell'Orologio family and later by the Wollemborgs, a rich Jewish Paduan family of German origin until the 1920s. Most of the present Giarre was subsequently purchased by the Sgaravatti family of Padua, who used part of the land in front of Villa as a nursery.

The interior of the villa underwent major renovations in the early 1900s with the addition of bathrooms and service rooms while the east staircase was constructed and some windows were modified. The villa was inhabited up until the 1950s and, from 1988, a series of three fires have sadly destroyed the interiors. Now no ceilings remain and a number of trees grow inside the ruins.

2. The Explore:
This was the one place on my to-do list to visit prior to my trip. I’d done some research into sites around where we were staying and came across the excellent blog by Giulia Blocal (see HERE)
The only location in striking distance and without any logistical issues was Sgaravatti (would have loved to have seen the Venitian isolation colony of Poveglia Island!). So on a perfect April morning I set off on the 40-minute drive to the villa. It was easy enough to find and was a walk-in from the road. It’s in a poor way but as you can see – it is really photogenic – possibly more so for its exterior shots rather than the internals.

3. The Photographs:

img9769 by HughieDW, on Flickr

img9772 by HughieDW, on Flickr

Ah…that tower!

img9773 by HughieDW, on Flickr

Gates are open:

img9802 by HughieDW, on Flickr

And we’re in!

img9775 by HughieDW, on Flickr

View from the courtyard:

img9776 by HughieDW, on Flickr

img9790 by HughieDW, on Flickr

And from the stable block:

img9793 by HughieDW, on Flickr

Inside it’s just a shell:

img9778 by HughieDW, on Flickr

Didn’t go on the balcony…

img9779 by HughieDW, on Flickr

And went so far up the tower…

img9781 by HughieDW, on Flickr

img9782 by HughieDW, on Flickr

and then bottled it. Interior tree:

img9783 by HughieDW, on Flickr

And another:

img9801 by HughieDW, on Flickr

About the only bit of floor left!

img9800 by HughieDW, on Flickr

Looking back to the stables:

img9784 by HughieDW, on Flickr

img9786 by HughieDW, on Flickr

And then there is the gem of the chapel at the back:

img9811 by HughieDW, on Flickr

img9788 by HughieDW, on Flickr

Back to the stable block:

img9791 by HughieDW, on Flickr

img9792 by HughieDW, on Flickr

img9794 by HughieDW, on Flickr

Looks like someone was living here until recently:

img9795 by HughieDW, on Flickr

But probably not cooking using this:

img9797 by HughieDW, on Flickr

Full-frontal from the road:

img9812 by HughieDW, on Flickr

img9808 by HughieDW, on Flickr

And back round the side for a bit more tower porn:

img9803 by HughieDW, on Flickr

img9810 by HughieDW, on Flickr

Spot here why I didn’t make it to the top of the tower:

img9813 by HughieDW, on Flickr

Bye-bye Villa Sgaravatti:

img9806 by HughieDW, on Flickr
Likes: The_Raw