"Villa Torlonia - Mussolini's home - a dark history" Top 5 Page for this destination Villa Torlonia Tip by icunme
Villa Torlonia, Rome: 5 reviews and 19 photos
Begun by Giuseppe Valadier in 1802, this was the home of Mussolini in the twenties. It became a part of the public park system in 1978. It deteriorated extensively due to vandalism.
In the second half of the XVIIIth century Giovanni Raimondo Torlonia, son of a French merchant, founded his bank, and became one of the wealthiest Roman families. Riches brought nobility and the need for appropriate villas and adornments. In 1802 they commissioned Luigi Valadier. Numerous structures emerged including a Swiss Chalet that was to become a medievel building and the Tempio Saturno. Numerous works of classic art, in great part scultoree, were acquired in order to furnish the Villa. One small part of these is still visible inside of the Museum of the Casino of the Principles (the main Villa structure). Painstaking restoration is underway in the interior.
When I was there today (July 26, 2006) the entire property showed the renovation and restoration efforts in progress. Now beautifully restored (May 2007) the building holds period sculpture, furnishings, and paintings as well as an anti air-gas shelter and an anti air-raid bunker!
"Limonata" is a quaint cafè found in the park, 20 meters from the Villa.
Photo 2 - In 1842 Prince Alessandro Torlonia embellished the gardens with two brand new obelisks, cut in a marble quarry near Lago Maggiore in northern Italy and brought to Rome by ship, in a sort of repetition of the transportation of the Egyptian obelisks carried by the Roman emperors.
Photo 3 - Another structure being rennovated on the grounds.
Photo 4 - Remains of the original Tempio Saturno.
Phtoo 5 - View from main Villa Torlonia toward street.
Beneath the park there are Jewish catacombs, made up of two cemeteries dating back to the 3rd and 4th centuries AD. The walls are decorated with ornate Hebraic paintings and symbols.
Location: via Nomentana 70, via Siracusa, via L.Spallanzani
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