The President’s Reception at Villa Spada

February 27, 2013 / Events
Rome, Lazio
iremb signOne of the highlights of Irish President Michael D. Higgins and Sabina Higgins’ recent official visit to Rome was the reception held in his honor at the Irish Embassy, Villa Spada.

Located high above the city on the Janiculum Hill, Villa Spada with its gardens, history and sweeping views over Rome, ranks among the loveliest embassy residences in the Eternal City.

Nearby gardens are dotted with statues and monuments honoring important characters and moments in Italy’s Risorgimento history while the 16th century Fontanone and panoramic terrace are favorite spots for wedding photos.  The gardens of the Villa Spada hold some wonderful orange trees like those mentioned here.

The five reception rooms filled up quickly, and waiters found it difficult to weave through the crowds with trays of drinks and finger food and by the end of the evening the mantelpiece was crowded with empty glasses.

irem clericsAmbassador Michael Hennessy gave a welcome speech followed by the President’s address to the guests and members of the local Irish community, then a receiving line was formed so that all who wished could personally meet the President.

In his talk, the President mentioned the many ties that bind Ireland to Italy: the  saints, scholars, soldiers and even sportsmen.

It was my honor to present him with my latest book that speaks of the Irish soldiers who fought in Italy during the Risorgimento battles of 1860.

ir em drinks table

ir em glasses
ir em oranges
ir em library

irem fontanone

Mary Jane Cryan

by Mary Jane Cryan

Mary Jane is a historian, cruise lecturer, author and publisher of books on Italian history and central Italy has been residing in Italy for half a century.

See her award winning website and weekly blog posts on 50YearsInItaly for more about central Italy and to order books directly from the author.

4 Responses to “The President’s Reception at Villa Spada”

  1. Carol Burke

    Am puzzled about the water swirling around the columns (supports) in one of the web photos Where was the photo taken and from where is all that water coming?

  2. Pat Carney-Ceccarelli

    Mary Jane, a vry interesting article. I did not know about the Irish involvement in the Risorgimento. Can you send your book reference and where to purchase (if not amazon)


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