011AT09150–Converted Palazzo

Lija, Malta
Rental €12,000 - Palazzo
011AT09150 5 Bedrooms 6 Bathrooms

Beautiful Palazzo Situated in the old village core of Lija was built by Giovanni Gourgion as a prestigious country residence in 1709. Giovanni Gourgion who was born in 1645, occupied several prestigious posts in the administration of the island of Malta. Between 1692 and 1698 he was appointed Lieutenant Governor of Malta, a post known as Capitano della Verga, thus becoming the Commander in Chief of the Country Districts, directly next in command to the Grand master of the Knights of Malta. His descendants married into prominent families of nobility including the De Piro family, which considerably increased the family wealth. The heraldic escutcheon’s carved on the exterior facades of the Palazzo demonstrate the noble status enjoyed throughout the last three hundred years. This 18th century Palazzo in the open countryside was architecturally modeled on similar residences in Palermo, Catania and Syracuse in Sicily.
The two storey Villa with its large back garden is a Grade 1 listed building because of its historical status and unique architectural features. Today the grounds are a fraction of the original size of the vast orange groves that surrounded the estate. In the early 20th century a large segment of the grounds were fragmented to become smaller villa residences.
In May 2011 the present owner, who is a direct descendant of the De Piro Gourgion family, started a restoration and conservation project of the property. Permission was obtained from the Environment and Planning Authority to upgrade the infrastructure and services to modern day standards. Professional restorers and experienced tradesmen were engaged for such specialized works. The latest amenities and modern technology have been introduced to combine the comfort of modern luxurious living within an authentic 18th century noble setting.
The villa’s entrance leads through a barrel-vaulted Hallway paved in marble to four main rooms. These being a Library/Study, a formal Sitting room, Dining room, and a family Living/TV room. The hallway vault and the ceilings in three rooms are decorated with painted ceilings featuring large medallions with allegorical figures. The end of the hallway opens onto a wide stone terrace with stairs on either side leading to the garden and swimming pool area.
A corridor on the side of the Family living room leads to a newly built annex. This incorporates a large modern kitchen, a guest toilet, two guest/staff double bedrooms, each with an en suite shower, and access to the internal yard. This yard has a separate services entrance from the road for deliveries or maintenance staff. The large internal yard also serves as a drive-in parking area for two large cars which is accessed from the road by a remote-controlled roll up door.
An imposing wide marble staircase leads to the first floor which is also accessible by a six-passenger lift. A large landing leads to the three double bedrooms. The Main bedroom has a dressing room leading on to a large bath cum shower room. The other two bedrooms have their own shower facilities. A lobby on the left of the main staircase leads to a laundry cum utility room and a pantry. A spiral wrought iron staircase leads to an intermediate level and the roof.
High walls enclose the whole garden area. The wide flagstone pathways in the garden were designed in a symmetrical axis on the style of a Jardin a la Francaise. A central fountain with the original statuary divides the paths. The open sided tea rooms at the back of the garden provide a quiet place for contemplation or reading cum work. The rooms can also provide caterers sufficient space for equipment when entertaining guests. The swimming pool is equipped with Jacuzzi spouts and leads to a sun deck with a barbecue area.
The sub-terranean basement has the same layout and rooms as the upper floors. Access from the ground floor hallway, through a narrow corridor, is reached by a staircase hewn in the limestone rock. It has a historically unique 18th century large kitchen, with original features such as a functional wood oven and several large stone tables. These subterranean rooms have been fully restored and have all amenities to serve as a gym, entertainment area and even a wine cellar. Underground water cisterns provide enough water for the garden irrigation and swimming pool replenishment. A drip irrigation system with timer is installed around the trees and hedges.

Additional Property Details

  • Let Frequency: Monthly
  • Availabality: 16/01/2017
  • Lift: Yes
  • No of Bedrooms: 5
  • Bathrooms: 6
  • Swimming Pool: Private
  • Front Garden: Yes
  • Terrace: Yes
  • Property area (sq mtrs): 1473.00

Highlights