Villa Oliva - Lucca

Villa Oliva San Pancrazio – Lucca
The villa features an imposing portico with five arches and it is said to have been built in the 16th century by the celebrated architect,, Matteo Civitali. It was ordered by Ludovico Buonvisi, a leading member of one of the most important Lucca families, but the first definite information there is of its existence is found in a 17th century land map.
The front, more sober facade is characterised by the uniform position of the windows. The farm building, the stables, the building next to the villa and the side gate in the west part of the enclosure, date back to the end of the 1600s and the beginning of the 1700s. On the opposite east side there is an oratory and more farm buildings.
The late Renaissance style of the park is interesting because of the way the area is organised, the presence of numerous architectural and furnishing elements and the composition of the garden areas. It also features and interesting system of fountains which includes a fountain with a winged Siren.
A Nymphaeum, also called “the grotta” is situated in front of a high, semicircle of evergreen hedges and marks the end of the garden behind the villa; it faces a large lawn which can be admired from the portico.
The park to the south of the villa is on three levels; the middle level corresponds to the central path and here there is a fountain, known as the waterfall, complete with terracotta bas-reliefs and statues. The gates in the enclosure wall are interesting because of their elaborate construction and decoration.

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