Directly overlooking the waters of Lake Garda and perfectly positioned with its panoramic garden in the valley upstream, the Bettoni Cazzago Villa in Bogliaco is considered a unique and fascinating example of the how architecture and its surrounding landscape can be harmoniously integrated.
The Bettoni family, who were originally from the coast, amassed a great fortune between the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries from their thriving Genoa-based business and production of Lake Garda citrus fruit, which they sold in Northern Europe and Russia. Around mid-eighteenth century imperial Austria bestowed the title of “count” on the Bettoni family.
In 1751 the Bettoni family began transforming their property in Bogliaco into a grand, new residence, incorporating the original seventeenth century building. The project was initially entrusted to the Veronese architect Adriano Cristofoli, but from 1756 it was continued under the guidance of the Brescia architect Antonio Marchetti.
Its interior is decorated with elegant frescoes, magnificent sculptures, sumptuous furniture, precious paintings and a splendid library.
The panoramic garden was started in 1764 under the guidance of the Genoese architect Amerigo Vincenzo Pierallini.
The relationship between the garden and the local Lake Garda agricultural produce is interesting, as it combines purely architectural and aesthetic elements (the regular sections of the garden, its shaped hedges, its scenic staircase, the cave, as well as other sculptural and decorative aspects) and those that had been used to grow the useful crops throughout history (lemon groves, olive groves, vineyards, laurel shrubs, vegetable gardens and the woods).
The Bettoni family inspired the use of a single iconographic plan that would develop in the gardens and inside the residence, following a uniform vision in-line with the modern artistic applications of the main European cities. They called upon some of the best artists of that time to work for them.
It is possible, by reservation, to visit the monumental gardens and the palace interiors to admire its original furnishings and splendid art collections, to discover its public and private history. Often Bettoni family members accompany visitors.