Hotel Villa Signorini Ercolano (NA)

In the magical setting between the wonderful Palace of Portici, the arcane Villa dei Papiri and the sea, stands Villa Signorini, an authentic jewel of eighteenth-century architecture. 18th century building included in the list of Vesuvian Villas.

In the magical setting between the wonderful Palace of Portici, the arcane Villa dei Papiri and the sea, stands Villa Signorini, an authentic jewel of eighteenth-century architecture. 18th century building included in the list of Vesuvian Villas. The attention to detail and the conservative restoration of historical elements such as frescoes, furniture floors and fixtures operated under the strict supervision of the Superintendence for Environmental and Architectural Heritage, that for the Artistic and Historical Heritage and the Authority for the Vesuvian Villas make Villa Signorini one of the most precious and exclusive Vesuvian villas in which it is possible to breathe the history that the same building has lived over the centuries. “Villa Signorini” is located on the border between the towns of Portici and Ercolano along Via Roma, formerly Via Cecere, which once led from the main street, the famous Miglio d’Oro, to the sea. It is surrounded on three sides by a large garden, among the few of the Vesuvian villas to have come to us intact, in extension if not in morphology. The garden is formally divided into three parts: a central, properly decorative and ideal background of the artifact, and two lateral ones, which were the ancient agricultural appurtenances of the villa, as evidenced by notarial sources. The villa has miraculously preserved its environmental prerogatives: behind it, its garden borders the wood of Portici, while on the front the gaze can range up to the horizon on the excavations of Herculaneum, overcoming the restricted area that covers the “Villa dei Papiri” “; downstream, the entire Gulf of Naples is embraced, from Punta Campanella to Capo Posillipo; upstream the view is dominated by the Vesuvius and the palace. The historical investigations on the building were made complex by the fact that, due to the tax exemption that extended from Naples to the centers near Portici, there was no land registry (this privilege was abolished in 18 77 by the unitary state).

In the absence of certain documentary sources, in particular the map of the Duke of Noah and that of the Geri, in which the villa appears and that constitute, therefore, the term ante quem for its construction (mid-18th century). Even the attribution is not certain. In the absence of documentary sources, it is stylistically attributable to the architect Domenico Antonio Vaccaro, who is also very active in the area, adhering to the proposal of Roberto Pane. Of the first owner of the villa, such Don Andrea Alfano there are no certain news. During the French decade, in 1809 the formation of a temporary cadastre made known to Giovanbattista Cirelli the owner of the villa and of the rustic fund annexed to it. The villa passes to Louis Gaetani of the Eagle of Aragon who, in 1856, leaves this property to his children. In 1884, the asset was sold to Carlo Brancia, prince of Apricerna. To his wife and children. In 1911, the widow of the prince d ‘Apricerna who in 1903 had entered into a full possession of the property, the owner of what will become the most important agro-food industry of the south. It was Paolo Signorini himself, transforming the building into his own home to the major changes that we see today, all, however, of modest importance, with the exception of with the garden, strongly marking the postic facade. Yes, they are elements of floral taste that are well set with the rococo rococo charming taste (we refer to the wrought iron closures and glass of the loggia on the garden, the stucco decorations and paper on the main floor and some wooden interior fixtures) .

Paolo Signorini died in the early sixties, leaving the building to his heirs. This was inhabited until 1980. After November 23 this year due to the earthquake, the main floor was evacuated and only the rooms on the ground floor were occupied; the garden, on the other hand, had been entirely occupied by a nurseryman who used it for production and sales. Fortunately, the earthquake did not cause major static damage to the building, at least not as many as it led to the abandonment lasted, a decade. Imposing water infiltrations from the roof damaged, in fact, heavily the decoration of the ceilings of the main floor. At the end of ‘900 the property was alienated by the Signorini heirs and after the restoration work, the company that manages the villa after centuries of jealous closure to the public of the building has made it a public use for cultural events and entertainment, parties and ceremonies that today is also an elegant 4-star Relais with 18 rooms (13 classic and 5 Suites) with a refined restaurant “Le Nuvole” where traditional Neapolitan cuisine is served using typical local products.

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