VILLA DELLA REGINA
The complex of vineyards and gardens was built on the Turin hill on the model of Roman villas by Prince Cardinal Maurizio di Savoia, son of Duke Carlo Emanuele I at the beginning of the seventeenth century (documentation from 1615, 1618-1619), entrusting the project to the architect in 1615 Ascanio Vitozzi and, after the latter's death, to Carlo and Amedeo di Castellamonte. According to the original project, the villa should have taken on the appearance of a sumptuous country residence, complete with vineyards.
The first name of the villa was “Villa Ludovica”, precisely because it became the personal residence of Ludovica di Savoia. In the villa, Maurizio di Savoia used to organize meetings of academics and intellectuals, during which art, science, philosophy and mathematics were discussed in the many lounges in the building. In 1657 his wife Lodovica expanded its buildings and gardens, updating decorations and furnishings.
In 1692 the vineyard passed to Anna d’Orleans, wife of Vittorio Amedeo II, who arranged important interventions in what will now be called Villa della Regina.
With the guidance of Filippo Juvarra, and then of Giovanni Pietro Baroni of Tavigliano, spaces and relationships with the garden, the furniture and the seventeenth-century decorations (D. Seyter and team of P. Somasso) are redefined with the involvement of the great artists 'works in the royal shipyards of the capital of the kingdom (G.B. Crosato and C. Giaquinto, G. Dallamano).
The unity, maintained since the initial project, of the vineyard, then the villa with the courtly pavilions, the caves, the water features in the gardens and in the park and the service and agricultural areas, was preserved even with the loss of function and the passage in 1868 to the Institute for the Daughters of the Military (body suppressed in 1975). The lack of maintenance of the delicate balance between buildings and gardens, followed by gradual abandonment, partial dismemberments, war damage and improper interventions, in the twentieth century compromised the extraordinary complex with a deterioration close to collapse.
From the moment of delivery to the then Superintendence for the Artistic and Historical Heritage of Piedmont in 1994, the restorations carried out with state funds, organizations and individuals, have re-established the conservation situation and the close connection of the Compendium of Villa della Regina with the city, which, from the beginning of the seventeenth century, constitutes the scenographic backdrop beyond the Po.
Today the villa complex can be visited and, inside the charming seventeenth-century building in Baroque style, numerous paintings by artists such as Daniel Seiter and Giovanni Battista Crost can be admired. Of particular beauty are the splendid Chinese cabinets in lacquered and gilded wood that are found inside.
On the back of the building there is an Italian garden, in the shape of an amphitheater, in which the Solinghi pavilion is located, a two-storey construction in the shape of a pagoda where the Accademia dei Solinghi, a circle of intellectuals founded precisely from Maurizio of Savoy.