Riviera del Brenta is a magical territory located between the provinces of Venice and Padua, which along the Naviglio-Brenta river offers Venetian villas, wonderful gardens and works of art. The golden period of Riviera del Brenta goes from the 16th century to the 18th century, since the rich Venetian patricians had chosen this area as their ideal holiday place. There is a large number of villas, all with splendid gardens, many open to the public, where one can admire the architecture and indoor paintings.

Villa Widmann Foscari
The villa spreads over three floors: mezzanine, first and second floors. It is completely furnished with vintage furniture, Murano glass chandeliers and brocade tapestries. The visit on the mezzanine floor and first floor provides for theme cards dedicated to the objects and traditions of the villa and the Venetian nobility. A pretty room is dedicated to the gondola and its related craft trades. The villa keeps one of the few samples of felze (cabin), the traditional cover of Venetian boats. The Porticato della Barchessa which encloses a Venetian style Campiello (small square) and a collection of ancient carriages is very charming. The “Parco monumentale” (park) spreads over 16.000 square meters amongst paths filled with hornbeams, ancient roses and a small romantic lake with water bald cypresses.

Villa Pisani
The “Queen of Venetian villas”, is one of the main tourist attractions in the Veneto region. Situated along the enchanting Rivera del Brenta, 10 minutes away from Padua and 20 from Venice, the majestic villa of Pisani noble family has given hospitality, in its 114 rooms, to doges, kings and emperors, and today it is a national museum which keeps furniture and works of art dating back to the 18th century and the 19th century, amongst which the masterpiece “Gloria della famiglia Pisani” by Gianbattista Tiepolo, frescoed on the ceiling of the majestic Sala da Ballo (dance hall). “Every step is a new sight and a new beauty”: thus described Villa Pisani garden an enthusiastic traveller in the nineteenth century. As in the past, the garden is enchanting with its flamboyant sights, original architecture, from the Coffee House to the Esedra, its famous maze, among the most important ones in Europe, its valuable citrus fruit collection in the Orangerie and its greenhouses with plants and flowers, “everything which gives pleasure to the sight and gratifies our taste”, as boasted Almorò Pisani. Villa Pisani hosts great ancient, modern and contemporary arts exhibitions, which draw over 150.000 visitors every year.

Castello di Stigliano
A medieval fortalice located in the hamlet of Santa Maria di Sala which, under the domination of the Serenissima (Most Serene Republic of Venice), was used as a stately palace taking up the look of a Venetian villa. The origins of the castle date back to Roman times, when it was used as a fortification at the borders between the countrysides of Altino and Padua (traces of the centuriation are still visible in the so-called “Graticolato Romano”, Roman grid). It has been abandoned for a long time, but recently it has undergone further changes and it now offers tourist facilities.

Villa Donà delle Rose
The villa is located in Salzano (VE), on the main road. Once you go past one of the three gates with pillars ornated with 18th century statues, you enter the grass garden facing the building, at the sides of which there are the entrances to the other two areas of the property: on the east side, you can access to a green area with a small hill which once contained an ice house; on the west side there is a large park measuring 48.000 square meters with plenty of canals, drops, caves, paths and a thick vegetation, which was attached to the property; designed by Luigi Garzoni in 1854. Where previously the colonnades and chapel once were, which were situated in the north, was built a spinning mill in 1872, remarkable for its avant-guard architectonic and plant-engineering elements.

Villa e Barchessa Giustinian Morosini
Close to the town centre of Mirano you can find the public parks of Belvedere and Morosini “XXV aprile” villas and the private park of Villa Errera. Opposite Villa Belvedere stands the architectural complex of Castelletto and Grotte del Belvedere, built in the second half of the 19th century by the noble Venetian Vincenzo Paolo Barzizza according to the late romantic taste for fake ruins.

Article liberally inspired by

Villa Widmann Foscari • Via Nazionale, 420 – Mira (VE). Tel: 041424973
Villa Pisani • Via Doge Pisani, 7 – Stra (VE). Tel: 049502074
Castello Di Stigliano • Via Noalese, 7 – Stigliano di Santa Maria di Sala (VE). Tel: 0415780666
Villa Donà delle Rose • Via Miranese, 36 – Mirano (VE). Tel: 0415728366
Villa Morosini • Via Mariutto, 1 – Mirano (VE). Tel: 041 5798379

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