Background Information


Description of place

 The place a private villa made of local irregular stonework and vaulted ceilings. The property includes the terraced garden and four levels of a private residence, (terra, primo, secondo, terrazzo) – translated from Italian meaning ground, first, second, and rooftop levels) with a loggia (balcony) on the second level. The plans, which illustrate this configuration, are available on request.

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This property also includes a second block of land that is an orto (vegetable garden). Villa Fiume is a significant historic component of the four original village settlements (Coletta, Oresine,Veravo, Vasallo) are at the gateway of the Val Pennevaire (Pennevaire Valley) which is widely utilised for bushwalkers, rock climbers and outdoor activities connected to nature. There is no connected electricity, water or sewerage to this property at present. The components of this place will be referred to as buildings and the grounds for the purpose of this management plan.

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This property dates back to around the mid 17th century. The fabric of this place also includes wine making artefacts on the piano primo (first floor plan), a livestock stable on the piano terra (ground floor plan), wood doors and lentils, rendering finishes externally and internally, self supporting stone stairway to terrazzo’s (rooftop balconies), agricultural artefacts, and wooden gates. The terraced garden and orto have plants that are symbolic of traditional agricultural practices; species such as the cherries, olives and vegetables were used in traditional food preparation. The cucina (kitchen) on the piano secondo (second floor plan) and cameras on the piano secondo (second floor plan), still have artefacts, indicative of traditional activities. The nature trails that pass through the village via the ancient road running under Villa Fiume connects it to a wider historic natural heritage of traditions like foraging for mushrooms, fishing in streams, and other buildings along these trails.

This place was built in the period of the late renaissance, a cultural movement originating in Italy, and exhibits architectural characteristics such as a loggia (an open arched balcony), which was popular in this period. This property provides a valuable insight into the transition from the Middle Ages towards Modernity. From the high renaissance, nearly every Italian commune had an open arched loggia in its main square, which served as a symbol of communal justice and government and as a stage for civic ceremony. In Italian architecture, a loggia often takes the form of a small, often ornate balcony arch, typical of summerhouses built on the higher levels of a residence to enjoy cooling winds and the view. They were especially popular in the 17th century.

The earliest documents mentioning Castelbianco date back to 1202, where one of the closest villages to Veravo, Colletta, is known to have been built in the 13th century as a form of defence established as a defence against the Saracens in the 13th century. The parish of Our Lady of the Assumption is located on the crest of the hill, on the west side of Veravo. It was built in 1689 by the villagers residing in Veravo. This surrounding area includes the Baroque domes of churches, as well as the typical Ligurian houses of the hamlets made of stonewalls and featuring doors and windows with white-plastered frames.

 

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