Ville & Casali
A villa with sails on the island of Ortigia
On the promontory of Plemmirio mentioned by the ancient Roman poet Virgil in his Aeneid, the architect Mario Rizza has designed a modern project that blends into the horizon of Cape Passaro
On the promontory of Plemmirio, the nature reserve mentioned by Virgil in his Aeneid that overlooks the island of Ortigia and an international tourist hub that is also on the shortlist for Italian capital of culture 2024, some of the most modern and panoramic villas of the former
Greek colony have been built in recent years. One such construction, villa Serena, has benefitted from a profound architectural reinterpretation by the Mario Rizza architectural studio, professionally assisted by the Syracuse-based company Teamnetwork.
“The aim of the project was to exploit the beautiful location by taking advantage of the charm of the surrounding landscape of the Plemmirio marine reserve and to reflect this in the shape of the house, trying to fully capture the changing light and atmosphere of the four seasons,” explained the architect Mario Rizza in an interview with Ville&Casali.
A landscape characterised by steep and rocky slopes was the starting point for planning this project of a house built in the seventies. The building emerges out of the ground with two structures that blend into one, in perfect harmony with the topography of the area.
The pitches of the two components were designed with the edges of each of the structures mutually aligned and interlocked. This creates sails that produce shadows, giving depth to the façade.
The main spaces of the house - the lounge, dining room, kitchen, toilet, two double bedrooms and bathrooms - are located on the ground floor. All benefit from views of the outdoors and the pool.
The main part of the house is divided into multiple areas, but the play of colours and materials and the way the inside connects with the outside makes the space a cohesive whole. The pure white building emerges from the rocks, while the roof is fitted with a series of opaque, black, aesthetic, integrated, non-reflective solar panels, which make this villa one-of-a-kind. The property is beautifully summed up by its owners: “It’s a home that welcomes and embraces you without suffocating you. It cradles you, taking you on a wonderful journey of the senses.”