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Villa Simonetti


Area: Piana di Lucca
Place: Lucca
District/Locality: The building is a private property and cannot be visited inside.
Building dating: 1909

The compound based villa consists of three floors in addition to the cellar and has a pavilion roof surfaced with Marseillais roof tiling. It is situated in a garden which surrounds it on three sides. The main north facing façade looks directly onto the street and hosts the entrance which constitutes a door surmounted by an important cantilever roof in glass and iron, richly adorned with spiral and plant motifs. On the north façade there is a marble fascia reaching half way up to the windows on the ground floor that are simply squared just like the ones on the first floor. Above the latter, a light cornice with intervals of studs in plaster runs along all the façades of the building. On the first floor, a terrace with a parapet in wrought iron and little squared columns, adorns the north façade and part of the eastern one. The terrace is supported by corbels still in iron, which form motifs of spirals and leaves similar to those on the cantilever roof.
On the second floor there is another terrace whose railings in wrought iron have similar decoration as the earlier ones described. A light cornice with intervals of studs in plaster runs between the windows on the second floor which are smaller than the ones below. The cornices project above the window.
The characteristic feature of the west façade is its semi circular shaped body which contains the staircase and presents two large depressed arch openings divided into three coloured glass windows.
The two wrought iron gates enclosing the property are also of great interest.
The building is a private property and cannot be visited inside.
Historycal news

Villa Simonetti was projected in 1909 by an architect called Gaetano Orzali (1873-1954), who, despite having being transferred from Lucca to Genova in 1902, still continued carrying out intense professional activities in Lucca and Viareggio. Since the construction of the building until present, no relevant changes have been made to its external appearance or in its interior apart from the installation of a lift and the division in three separate flats.
(text by Lorenza Caprotti - Centro Studi Cultura Liberty e Déco)
How to reach

by car: A11 motorway exit "Lucca Centro". Follow the signs for the town centre until you reach the ring road along the walls. Turn right in Viale Carducci and continue along the ring road until Viale Giusti where you will find the villa at numbers 375/379.
Bibliography

- Archivio Storico del Comune di Lucca
- Archivio Soprintendenza B.A.A.A.S. delle province di Pisa, Lucca, Massa Carrara, Livorno (schedatori: Gilberto Bedini e Giorgio Marchetti)
- A. Cambetti, Lucca nel 1913, Lucca 1914
- C. Cresti, Per una schedatura del liberty a Lucca, in Bollettino degli ingegneri n.4, 1973
- C. Cresti, Lucca oltre le Mura , in Toscana qui , n.2, 1982, Firenze
- R. Bossaglia (a cura di), Toscana in Archivi del Liberty italiano, Milano, 1987
- Fatti e misfatti di stili architettonici fra spiagge, darsene e l'Alpe di Versilia, in "Fra il Tirreno e le Apuane. Arte e cultura tra otto e novecento", catalogo della mostra, Firenze 1990
- M. C. Poggi, Gli Orzali, una famiglia di Ingegneri, Architetti, Costruttori, tesi di Laurea 1996, Facoltà di Architettura, Firenze
- M. A. Giusti (a cura di), Le età del Liberty in Toscana, Octavo Franco Cantini editore, 1996
- G. Bedini, L'arredo urbano e i villini di Lucca, in M.A. Giusti (a cura di), Le età del Liberty in Toscana, Atti del Convegno di Studi, Firenze 1995
- N. Nicoletti, Le residenze fuori dalle mura, in Il Museo per conoscere. Esperienze e proposte , a cura della Soprintendenza B.A.A.A.S. delle province di Pisa, Lucca, Massa Carrara, Livorno, Sezione Didattica dei Musei Nazionali di Lucca, anno II, n.3-4, Maria Pacini Fazzi Editore, Lucca 1995
- N. Nicoletti, I protagonisti: la famiglia Orzali, in Il Museo per conoscere. Esperienze e proposte , a cura della Soprintendenza B.A.A.A.S. delle province di Pisa, Lucca, Massa Carrara, Livorno, Sezione Didattica dei Musei Nazionali di Lucca, anno II, n.3-4, Maria Pacini Fazzi Editore, Lucca 1995
- E. Godoli (a cura di), Architetture del Novecento. La Toscana - Fondazione Michelucci, Edizioni Polistampa, Firenze 2001

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