Villa Caravella, Grazia Deledda’s home in Cervia, may not sail until October or spring 2023. But in the meantime, something is moving …

The route is plotted, but navigation will be slow, very slow. Throughout the summer, Villa Caravella will remain anchored in the harbor to first raise its sails at the end of the tourist season: weather permitting, it will take a trip to the high seas in the first two weeks of October, but the launch, more likely, will first have in late spring 2023. The ‘biscuit-colored house’ in vial Cristoforo Colombo in Cervia, where Grazia Deledda, the only Italian Nobel Prize winner in literature, spent her summers until the year before her death in 1936, and for a few decades owned by the Poggi family of hotel owners, will open its gates with great care: the presentation of a book or conference on the legacy of the great Sardinian writer to be held in the courtyard of the beautiful villa whose architecture dates back to the early 1900s.

This space, which at the time of the Deledda holiday had direct access to the dunes and the sea, is now used as a parking space for customers at the Hotel Odeon. In September, the seafront in Cervia is still full of tourists thanks to events such as the Ironmen, and there is skepticism about the possibility of taking it for public cultural initiatives.

“The property has informed us that even in a good part of September the farm is used for accommodation facilities, so it is easier to think of the first half of October if the weather helps, or more likely in May next year” ‘, emphasizes Culture Councilor Cesare Zavatta, who in the wake of the Ravennanotizie press campaign launched with author Marcello Fois, met the Poggi family and agreed on a common path to breaking the isolation of a home that has undeniable historical value to society as a whole. The trail is supported by the Emilia-Romagna region: “I do not think there are means to consider it among the famous houses, but we will find a way to lend a hand to the municipality to the extent that it, as it seems, will take care of the opportunity.”he told us Regional Councilor for Culture, Mauro Felicori. The agreement between the property and the municipality, Councilor Zavatta recalls, “is to make the house more visible and accessible, also through dedicated signaling devices, panels to be installed in the immediate vicinity of the house and restoration of the slab, which is very worn. These interventions are underway. , and we will be able to implement them by the end of the summer, so from next year the house could enter the cycle of writing positions with the first initiatives in the front courtyard managed directly by the Municipality ”.


The land is slippery and margins are narrow, but the potential and mutual benefits of private property and public bodies can be many. After suffering from a certain underestimation, also thanks to the initiatives for the 150th anniversary of the birth (which the Ministry of Culture has set up a national committee with Fois as chairman), Deledda’s cultural heritage has been greatly re-evaluated. A few days ago came the news that after Dante Alighieri and Pope Francis, the Sardinian writer in love with Cervia will be the third major personality to go on artificial intelligence with Alexa’s Words of Grace. which allows you to listen to his songs and get to know the places that inspired his books. An example of the use of the ‘Deledda brand’ has also arrived from Porto Rotondo: a historic 5-star hotel has launched the ‘Al mare con’ campaign, a collection of suites dedicated to famous Sardinian personalities, including the Nobel Prize. In short, if you believe in the combination of tourism and culture, the holiday home of the author, former honorary citizen of Cervia, can also become a formidable driving force for building a new tourist offer and running a business.

Giovannino Guareschis holiday house

Cervia Villa Max David

Max David’s villa


The region is at the forefront of the protection of historic homes with the regional law of 10 February 2022, which intends to recognize and improve the “Homes and Studies of Famous People of Emilia-Romagna”. So far, 90 surveyed companies have been united by a kind of ‘quality brand’ which gives public bodies, but also private and third sector entities, access to public funding. Although an article in the law is explicitly dedicated to the Nobel laureates, the Cervese House Deledda does not have the characteristics to be included in this census. “The margins are very narrow because we are facing a house that has retained the original exterior façade but has lost all effective evidence of the lives of the celebrities,” explains Claudia Collina.head of the Cultural Heritage Office in the Region.

“The way, without any guarantee, could be to acquire the house and improve it as a reconstructed historical residence / museum, and then eventually gain access to the specific supports. But the road is completely uphill and I do not see many glimpses ”. Another case could be represented by Giovannino Guareschi’s holiday home, in via Bellucci (a few meters from another excellent residence: Max David’s villa), still used by the heirs, and where the father of Peppone and Don Camillo died in July 1968. “If the house has kept evidence of the author’s life, it may fall within the requirements laid down by law,” notes Dr. Collina and explains that the per. on the basis of projects and in view of a willingness to open it for visits, the house could access public funds and be included in the census of historic houses.

A path worth exploring in the context of the open debate on the need to equip the Cervia Literary Park with a physical location. “Let’s go one step at a time. In the meantime, we have started the process of establishing the Park as a legal entity ”, comments Cesare Zavatta.” It is a necessary action so that the Municipality can then intercept funds. The physical location is a next step.It is not only the famous houses, we have premises or public buildings that can be lent ”.

Slowly, that is, but the Caravan goes. For now a very light wind is blowing on its sails. The important thing is that they do not lag behind.

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