The charm of a sixteenth-century Venetian Villa
in Palladian style with Veronesian frescoes
immersed in the green of the Treviso countryside.
Villa Chiminelli is a Venetian villa of the late sixteenth century, located in Sant’Andrea beyond the Muson, on the outskirts of Castelfranco Veneto, in the province of Treviso.
Among the Venetian villas it is certainly three the most fascinating even if less known. Recent studies show that the original property, “already attributed to the Corner family,” belonged to Francesco Soranzo, a Venetian noble, parish priest in S. Andrea Oltre il Muson from 1563 to 1595. In 1614 it passed to the noble Piacentini family and, later, in 1852, to the Tiepolo family. During the Second World War, in 1944, the Villa was occupied by the German armed forces, who used it as a military hospital, and later, with the liberation, by the American allied command. It was in this last year of the war that the entire property was purchased by Francesco Chiminelli who began the restoration work.
Today Villa Chiminelli is an agricultural estate
and lends itself as a location for events and weddings.
The villa, a typical example of the so-called “villa civilization”, follows the classic scheme of the Venetian villas of the time with a large central hall, four side rooms and a loggia in the entrance which is accessed by a short staircase adorned with eighteenth-century statues that represent the four seasons. The building is entirely frescoed inside and out. The paintings are attributed to Benedetto Caliari, brother of the more famous Paolo Veronese, and to his school.The external decoration creates a painted architecture, with a Palladian flavor, where a false elevation of columns encloses and emphasizes the triple opening of the loggia and four columns fluted with Corinthian capitals frame the coat of arms of the Soranzo family.
The paintings continue inside where the musical theme frequently dominates with musician angels, notes and various instruments. Then there are allegorical figures, joyful cherubs, flowery festoons, bucolic and religious scenes. The Corner coat of arms is on the north wall.
In addition to the frescoed noble floor, the villa also includes a basement for use as cellars, a mezzanine floor, attics and servants’ rooms. Finally, a chapel with a valuable altar is attached to the villa and overlooks the portico.
Outside there is an Italian garden, enclosed by a frescoed wall, decorated with a central fountain, numerous stone sculptures and two arcaded barchesse on two floors.
Beyond the gate are the agricultural estate and the vineyard, divided by a long tree-lined avenue.
In the cottages adjacent to the villa there is a Conciario Museum (linked to the “Scamosceria del Grappa” once managed by the Chiminelli family), an Agricultural Museum, which collects about 1000 objects representative of the work and daily life of the Venetian countryside (these objects form a collection that perhaps has no equal in Veneto), and finally a Peasant Museum.
Via Lama, 1 – Castelfranco Veneto (TV)