The construction of the villas in the Conca d'Oro of Palermo has a significant increase in the second half of the seventeenth century. Before that period, the area around Palermo was punctuated by towers, beams, rural chapels and rare suburban architectures for seasonal residence. The directions of the holiday culture are represented to the east of Palermo by Bagheria and Santa Flavia, and to the west by Mezzo Monreale, Pallavicino and S. Lorenzo. Even in the "Bagaria", a district belonging to Palermo until 1826, when it became an independent municipality, numerous villas began to be added to the numerous towers, fortified beams and rural chapels, already in the mid-seventeenth century, which constituted articulated architectures, including very high formal quality. It was the Branciforti, princes of Butera who wanted to build a fortified villa in Bagheria, in 1658, a few miles from Palermo, for their spring and autumn stay. The castle - villa that they built was in fact a microcosm, consisting of the residence of the dominus in the center and with the nearby court church, the low bodies for various service activities such as kitchens, stables, warehouses and the theater. In the Branciforte villa there was also an Italian park formed by fruit and ornamental plants, and also furnished with sculptures and seats for rest. There were also in the park animals such as peacocks and a lioness. In 1797, a pavilion was built at the end of the park to host one of the first wax museums in Europe and some accommodations to welcome the many guests of the Branciforte family. In 1715, Francesco F. Gravina and Cruillas, prince of Palagonia, began to have his villa built in Bagheria, according to a project attributed to the Dominican friar architect Tommaso M. Napoli. The Palagonia villa complex has an extraordinary shape. It was made up of triumphal arches (of which only one remains today and denominated of the Holy Trinity or of the Eternal Father) which led into a long avenue (today via Palagonia), once richly decorated, circular low bodies and with the central building formed by an elliptical compartment from which the "enfilade" with the rooms depart. In the middle of the century. XVIII, Francesco F. Gravina and Alliata had the villa decorated in Bagheria with statuary groups called "monsters". In fact, Villa Palagonia represents one of the most extraordinary architectures that exist in the world and is an asset to be protected and passed on to future generations.
|Title of host publication||Rotary 2110 Sicilia e Malta isole d’incanto|
|Number of pages||2|
|Publication status||Published - 2020|