133 Melita St
The first of Din l-Art Ħelwa’s cultural presentations for 2018 will be on the historic Villa Saint Ignatius in Balluta.
Architect Edward Said, who specialises in heritage buildings, will explain the historic and architectural value of the building which is steeped in history.
In the first decades of the 19th century, Balluta Bay was a remote, idyllic cove. Fields and quiet country lanes met the coastline then fortified by the entrenchment built during the reign of Grand Master Pinto.
Dominating this landscape was a fine country villa called Bel-Vedere.
Besides its architectural attributes, this building would, over the next century, accommodate various uses which are now regarded of great historic interest, most notably as a Jesuit College.
Along the way, most of the once-enchanting gardens that complimented this estate were lost to development, yet the mansion known today as St Ignatius Villa still stands, although somewhat obscured from sight.
In light of recent threats to its preservation, a study was commissioned by Din l-Art Ħelwa appraising its heritage value in an urgent bid to encourage authorities to have it listed as a scheduled property.
The presentation by Mr Said will take place on January 11 at the Judge Caruana Curran Hall at 133 Melita St, Valletta at 6.30pm.
Admission is free of charge but a donation towards the restoration programmes of Din l-Art Ħelwa would be appreciated.