Where dreams bloom

Discovering the Hypogeum Gardens

by Riccardo Tonioli

Sometimes, to make something extraordinary happen, you need to pursue your goals with tenacity, but also with a lucid madness hint.

And Maria Gabriella Campo must not miss either of the two ingredients when between the 70s and 80s of the last century, she imagined transforming a complex network of ancient sandstone quarries, even more than ten meters deep, into an incredible underground landscape where to do grow, sheltered by the winds and the island's saltiness, over three hundred varieties of plants from all over the world.

The authentic magic of this incomparable place lies in having united, in a very happy synthesis, the cyclopic architecture in stone, skillfully sculpted by the "pirriaturi" (quarrymen) from the mid-eighteenth century, with the lush colors, the perfumes and the aromas of a garden designed in a canonical way. Indeed, one would say made with an almost rhabdomantic talent in planting the essences and at the same time "wild" in adhering to the mighty underground spaces and the changing colors and textures of the carved stone, especially in the oldest quarries.

Ms. Ancilla, from Bergamo who has chosen to live on the island for decades, will guide you to discover this exciting botanical journey, full of unexpected views. Her kindness and passionate competence allow her to pinpoint the genesis and development of this enchanted place and therefore fully appreciate its profound beauty.


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