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Villa Medici o Villa Belcanto

Giardini Storici Fiesolani

This is one of the first examples of a Renaissance country residence as well as being one of the most renowned of the Medici villas. It was designed by Michelozzo in 1458 for Giovanni de’ Medici, son of Cosimo the Elder. According to Vasari, Michelozzo not only planned the actual villa, but also the three terraces, retained by strong upright walls, that form the garden. Lorenzo the Magnificent, who became owner of the property in 1469, spent many pleasant periods here in the company of poets and men of letters like Filarete, Marsilio Ficino, Pico della Mirandola and Agnolo Poliziano, who were all members of the Neo-Platonic Academy. Inventories of the period mention the presence of cypress trees, fruit trees, shrubs and roses in the garden and, above all, the Seville orange trees, brought here expressly from the Kingdom of Naples, that were planted along the south facing walls. On the death of Lorenzo the Magnificent, the villa passed into the hands of the Del Sera family, then to the Durazzini family and later to Albergotto Albergotti. He sold it in 1772 to Lady Orford who had the building changed around completely by placing the main entrance at the rear. The part of the garden that now stood at the front of the building was therefore adorned with the lemon house, designed by Gaspero Maria Paoletti, while the existing wall was decorated with mosaics. The property later became the property of William Blundell Spence, followed by the Mac Calman family and then Lady Sybil Cutting Lubbock, for whom Geoffrey Scott, who subsequently became her husband, and Cecil Pinsent, restored the garden to recreate it in 15th century style.

Ines Romitti


Villa Medici Fiesole
Indirizzo: Via Beato Angelico, 2,
Comune: Fiesole FI 50014
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