Finca Palmeretes has a quadrangular floor, a tower-shaped structure and a south-east adjacent terrace. The ground floor has strong personality thanks to its porch, erected on slender columns of molted iron which extend forming the parapets of the terrace. Its sloping roofs with ceramic cresting have large eaves supported by thin wooden brackets or corbels. The gaps of the windows and forged lines are blended with ceramic motifs. The joinery has delicate earthenware blinds, and when the wooden lattice is unfolded, dramatic shadows are projected on the facade. All these elements provide to the architectural ensemble a sophisticated visual dynamism.
The house has two floors, an attic of low height and a basement. Originally the house had no bathroom or kitchen. The food was made in an adjacent building, also very attractive but with different formal characteristics to those of the residence. The subsequent installation of the bathrooms led to the reorganisation of the building. The staircase that connected to the main hall had to become independent of the rooms to accommodate the toilets, an essential room for the standards of the twentieth century.
The farm is completed with what once were beautiful gardens with sculptures, pinnacles and monumental trees. The architect Santiago Varela made in the 80s the following description of the gardens: “[…] reduced space enclosed with reed fences, of quadrangular shape, crossed by a multitude of asymmetric walkways that run into corners with cement sculptures, flower beds bordered by privet hedges are placed among the promenades and planted with perennials, such as the rigorous heliotrope, lemon verbena, geraniums, knee holly, and endless bushes. Among the trees dominate the date palm tree, the washingtonias, a remarkable large canary dragon tree, a huge ficus affected by the droughts and a sequoia, among others, besides the two pine trees that shade the entrance façade, several jacarandas, and an old pine forest of small size. On the side of the house, across the Camí del Tenderel (Tenderel road), nearby the mentioned compound, and in front of its main entrance, the chapel of the estate is located, surrounded by an authentic small palm grove, and forming a rather picturesque combination […]. ”
In recent years the estate has suffered extensive looting and fires, along with the theft and destruction of garden sculptures. Most doors and windows have been forced, the library burglarized and some books have been burned. The handrails of the terrace and the stairs have disappeared. The first floor was also destroyed by fire. The estate, privately owned, is waiting for a comprehensive action to restore the house, the chapel and its gardens.
Did you know?
In front of the farm’s entrance arch, there is a door between stone buttresses with copings of eclectic forms typical of the nineteenth century. Opposite to it, across the road, the chapel of eclectic style and French influence is located. It was blessed in 1861 and is dedicated to Our Lady of Sorrows. It did not have originally a square plan, but a subsequent enlargement, gave it a rectangular termination. The roof of scale-shape zinc sheets is also a French-style dome with a central circular lantern.
In the beginning of the last century the owner was Alfredo Salvetti. Its last occupant was Ana Ballenilla Fajardo.