Strolling among the art nouveau villas in Riccione: a walk through time and history

Riccione tells a story that does not simply talk about the sea, and invites you to take a slow stroll through time, to discover lesser-known places that have, however, recorded some of the Art Nouveau history of the early 1900s.


Walking along the long tree-lined avenues, the curious visitor is attracted by the architectural beauties of the villas that reveal themselves among the foliage of the trees, to tell the story of a town that between the 19th and 20th centuries, thanks to the presence of the sea, had begun to be a place of interest for numerous families of the bourgeoisie who chose it as a holiday destination to build their bathing houses, in Art Nouveau style, which at the time was a widespread fashion throughout Europe.


This new artistic movement was inspired by the past to insert the most recent art nouveau elements, such as the use of floral decorations and ornamental motifs inspired by nature, the curved and sinuous lines to create beautiful holiday homes built inside large gardens.


Among the most prestigious buildings is Villa Franceschi (via Gorizia, 2), a simple yet elegant structure, embellished with external decorative details on the windows, a semi-hexagonal terrace and a turret with a belvedere: today, the Villa houses paintings, sculptures, drawings and graphics of the 20th century and some temporary exhibitions.


Villa Lodi Fé, in the heart of a fascinating garden, (John Paul II park), is distinguished by its chalet-style shape, a shape that was in widespread use along the Adriatic coast, characterized by archivolted windows, the slope of the roof, the square decorative motif of the external plasterwork.


Villa Mussolini (viale Milano, 31) has a simple two-storey structure with a turret placed to the east towards the main entrance overlooking a large garden, and it has recently been renovated to host temporary exhibitions. In Viale Milano at number 79, there is also Villa Antolini designed by the architect Vucetich in 1923.


On the corner with via Baracca you can see the chromatic tones and decorative elements of Villa Bella. In Viale Gramsci, the valuable art nouveau decorations on the facade of Hotel Des Bains, inaugurated in 1908, and of the Grand Hotel dated 1928 strike the visitor.


Next to it you can see the turret of Villa Martinelli Soleri dated 1877. In Viale Trento Trieste at number 26 there is the striking Pensione Florenza from the early 1900s. In Via Spalato, the elegant Hotel de la Ville of the 1930s is noteworthy.


The walk continues beyond the railway, in Viale Diaz, where Villa Pullè stands, while on Viale Ceccarini you can see Villino Graziosi from 1932 and Villa Serafini from the 1920s.