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Élisa’s Spa in Montioni

Marble bathtub (from Montioni). Folonnica (Grosseto), Villa Granducale
Marble bathtub (from Montioni). Folonnica (Grosseto), Villa Granducale

In 1805, Napoleon named Élisa Baciocchi Princess of the Principality of Piombino. A few years later, in 1809, after an exploration of the land, Élisa ordered the construction of a village near the old alum quarries, which was renamed the Municipality of Montioni Elisa.

The village was equipped with a spa facility for the princess’ personal use. The spa, which drew on the regular geometric forms typical of rationalist architecture and took advantage of the sulphur springs that gushed at Montioni at 31°, was fitted with two marble tubs made in Canova’s workshop. One of the tubs was removed after a Grand Ducal restoration in 1859 and is now housed in the Interior Garden of the Grand Ducal Villa of Follonica, today the seat of the Forestry Corps, while the second is found in front of the entrance to the Palazzina dei Mulini in Portoferraio.

The spa facility is in a condition of grave decline. All that survives of the building, which has no roof, are the perimeter walls and part of the flooring, where one can still make out the former location of the tubs. In the area behind the spa building, a cistern was dug for the collection of water.

Élisa’s Spa
Locale: Montioni Nuovo
Suvereto (Livorno)

Marble tub
Interior courtyard of the Villa Granducale
Via Bicocchi, 2
Follonica (Grosseto)