Villa Torrigiani

Villa Torrigiani stairs

HISTORY.Villa Torrigiani, which dates back to the 16th century, is one of the most spectacular estates in the Lucca area. The villa originally belonged to the Buonvisi family. Early 17th century it became the property of the Santini family. The Torrigiani family acquired the villa in 1816, when Vittoria Santini married Pietro Guadagni, who had taken his mother‘s name in order to inherit her patrimony.

Villa Torrigiani 18th century site plan

THE VILLA. The architect is unknown, but in the 17th century the villa was refurbished by Maurizio Oddi. The long cypress avenue leads to ornate gates from where the villa can be seen across a large expanse of lawn. Its front façade has impressive Mannerist features. Steps are leading to the central arched portico flanked by statues, a theme that has been repeated on the first floor. The two upper floors and the roof have balustrades decorated with statues. Larger statues are placed in arched niches.

Villa Torrigiani gate and facade


The saloon, one of the lavishly decorated rooms.

The interior of the villa is grandiose. Rooms on the ground and first floor are lavishly decorated and contain a wealth of exquisite furniture, including divans, pianos and harpsichords. The original large collection of paintings was further extended in the 17th century with paintings by Pontormo, Guercino, Domenichino and other famous painters. There is a library, containing old volumes of architectural plans and a display of 17th century French engravings on the walls.



Secret Garden of Flora, facing the entrance to the grottoTHE GARDENS. Originally the gardens were laid out in French inspired parterres (designed by Le Nôtre), which were later replaced by English style gardens. A 17th century Italian style secret garden or ‘Garden of Flora’ remains.



At one end of the secret garden is a fanciful grotto decorated with rocky  sculptures places in niches in the walls. At the other end are double staircases with  the Nymphaeum of Winds underneath. Visitors to this garden are likely to be sprayed by hidden springs that spout water from the dome of the grotto and the pathways The double stairs lead to a lemon garden and a large pond.


Garden behind the villa, showing the Tower of Baccani

Other interesting features are a small temple of Arcadia and the Tower of Baccani, built in 1821. The tower acts as an observatory for one of the Torrigiani’s with an interest in astronomy.

Today the gardens contain huge hothouses filled with a wide variety of exotic house plants which are the hobby and business enterprise of the Marquis Vieri Torrigiani Malaspina.

Villa Torrigiani.
Via del Gomberaio 355100
Camigliano Santa Gemma
Tel: 0583/928-041 or 339/692-9254.

Write to the above address for permission to visit these magnificent ornamental gardens owned by the Marquis Vieri Torrigiani Malaspina. This knowledgeable owner is known to conduct groups of keen gardeners around these gardens. Unfortunately, the villa’s interior is usually not open for public viewing.