The Neapolitan nobles liked the natural beauties of the landscape, so followed the King and built along the coast of the bay of Naples at the shadow of Vesuvius some beautiful houses, where they spent their summer holidays. Along the way of The Golden Mile between the sea and the volcano, some of the most famous architects of the 18th century worked, just like Vanvitelli and Fuga. The Vesuvian Villas are in Neoclassical Style, they have wonderful gardens with fountains, and statues. The Halls and the interiors are in Baroque and Rococò Style. In Portici there are about 30 Vesuvian Villas, but only a few have been restored and open to public. We are visiting: The Royal Palace and Villa Savonarola.
Nearby San Ciro Square, going along Via Università, towards Ercolano, there is the Royal Palace of Portici. It was commissioned by King Charles III in 1738, as his summer residence and some of the finest architects of the period worked on it. In 1755 King Charles opened the Museum of Herculaneum to house the old objects from the site of Herculaneum. During the Napoleonic occupation, General Murat enriched the palace with French furniture. Today the palace is the home of the Agriculture Faculty of University of Naples “Federico II”, that operates the botanical gardens in the royal park. The centre of the palace has a quadrangle square crossed by Via Università, once called Strada delle Calabrie. In the side courtyards there are old tractors and agricultural displays. In the entrance hall, a magnificent staircase in marble with statues from Herculaneum and precious frescoes at the walls, goes to the first floor. Here, there are royal Halls with original decorations in rococò style, the Chinese room and the porcelain drawing room of Queen Maria Amalia. The palace has two parks: one looking at the sea, with spacious avenues in the English gardens, and another one looking towards Vesuvius with statues, fountains and an amphitheatre.
Villa Savonarola is placed in Corso Garibaldi. It was built in 1850 by Luigi Corsi, director of “Opificio di Pietrarsa” It has changed owners and name throughout the years, as long as in 1949 the Evangelical Biblical Institute of Italy gave it the current name in honor of the Dominican monk, Girolamo Savonarola, who was burned at the stake. Today the villa is part of the heritage of the Municipality of Portici, and its large restored garden is used for shows and events. The villa is in neoclassical style, in grey and yellow, it has a façade with a portico with columns, pillars, and a large terrace. It is composed by two floors: on the ground floor there is a big hall, a Picture Gallery, and the Chapel with ancient frescoes. On the first floor, there are the rooms of the City library, with over 13000 volumes, among them there are some books of the ‘700 about the history of Herculaneum, Pompeii and Bourbons.
See you soon in Portici we hope you enjoyed our beauties of The Golden Mile
About the source: izi.TRAVEL
Izi aims to connect cities, museums, and their stories with travellers who want to explore the world in a brand new, innovative way: via a global, open and free platform.