A profusion of stuccoes, polychrome glass, carved stones, blue, yellow and ocher colored decorations: commissioned in the first half of the 19th century to the architect Giuseppe Jappelli by Prince Alessandro Torlonia, the Serra and the Moresca Tower are one of the many marvels of Villa Torlonia. Following the completion of the restoration work conducted by the Capitoline Superintendency for Cultural Heritage, they are finally open to the public from 8 December..
With its Moorish-style architecture inspired by the Alhambra in Granada, the Serra was a beautiful garden pavilion, intended to accommodate exotic and rare plants but also spectacular events. The Tower was instead reserved for more intimate meetings, for a few participants, invited by the Prince in the lavish dining room on the top floor. Between the Tower and the Serra, Jappelli had then built an artificial grotto, largely demolished in 1908, with ponds and suspended wooden paths, only partially preserved.
The first phase of restoration of the buildings, completed in 2013, involved both the structural and the decorative parts, both compromised by years of neglect and rebuilt also thanks to documents and images of the time. With the latest works, the complex becomes part of the Museums of Villa Torlonia, paying attention to respecting its original vocation.
The splendid structures of the Serra, inside which the existing fountain has been reactivated, frame a series of lush plants of palm trees, agaves, pineapples and aloes. The first floor is intended for workshops and education, whereas the outdoor space is dedicated to events, exhibitions, fairs, shows and environmental education meetings. In this naturalistic-historical scenery, besides the imposing Tower, are the remains of the cave, highlighted by scenographic lighting, with waterfalls and lakes, made even more suggestive by water lilies, oxygenating plants and lotus flowers.
The complex is open to the public until 31 March (10:00-16:00 - from Tuesday to Sunday) and from 1 April to 20 September (10:00- 19:00). It will be closed in July and August for climatic reasons.
More Info: museivillatorlonia.it