MEZZOLARA DI BUDRIO
Via Lumaca 6
The reddish Villa Rusconi lies among green tree-tops and meadows and looks more like a castle than a Villa. It was built during the 15th century, even if its modern appearance presents many neo-medieval touches, added during the strong restoration works made in the 19th century.
At the beginning of the 1700s, when it was owned by Magnani, the Villa was yet sumptuous, with the elegant small tower in the middle of the façade, and the airy three arches porch that precedes the entrance. In 1813 the Rusconi family bought the Villa from the marquises Malvezzi and then, according to some authors, the building was crowned with blackbirds and terracotta decorations, which altered its original appearance. Near the Villa, there is the small oratory of Santa Ninfa, which was once located in the intersection between the streets for Saint Martin in Argine and Molinella, near a dangerous bend of the rover Idice, which in the past linked Budrio to Molinella crossing the city of Mezzolara. The oratory was also the funerary chapel of the Rusconi family and where Giacomo Filippo Rusconi, co-founder of the Cassa di Risparmio of Bologna and director of the Pontifica post office of Bologna was buried in 1850.
The current appearance of the oratory dates back to 1839, when the Rusconi family ordered the restoration of the old oratory of the Blessed Virgin of the Rose (dating from the 16th-17th century). On the west side of the Villa there is vivid red farmhouse, once used as the farmer’s home, a warehouse, a carriage house and stables for horses; and on the East side there’s another smaller service structure. Hidden in the forest at the northwest of the Villa, a green hill rises above a vast ice-deposit in the basement, once used to keep perishable foods fresh.