Fata Morgana Fountain

A unique example of garden architecture in the hills of Grassina.

Bagno a Ripoli

The Fata Morgana Fountain, also known as the Cottage of the Fairies, was built by Bernardo Vecchietti in the mid-1550s in the garden of his family's summer residence, Villa Il Riposo.

The complex is a unique example of garden architecture, halfway between the typology of the nymphaeum and the grotto, and inside it contained the Giambologna marble statue of Fata Morgana (Morgan Le Fay) to which the source is dedicated.

The building is characterized by trompe l'œil architectural details: the plaster is made of fake pink briks, which contrast with the white stone decorating the doors and windows. 

The mosaic floor is very particular, consisting of white and black pebbles that, on the threshold, make up the words "Fata Morgana".

Fata Morgana Fountain - Credit: Comune di Bagno a Ripoli

The mysterious and magical aura of the place, as well as the fame of Morgana, has favored the birth of legends around the place: Bacchanalia and feasts are told to be happened in summer nights, but especially sudden appearances of beautiful young women, nymphs and fairies, which mysteriously disappeared. Even today, the water of the spring is told to be rejuvenating.


Cover image credit: Vignaccia76

Bagno a Ripoli
Hill town at the gates of Florence
From the Inn of the wayfarers, "Il Bigallo", to the poetic Ninfeo di Giambologna, better known as the Grotto of Morgan le Fey, passing through sweet urbanised landscapes, lies the beautiful territory of Bagno a Ripoli, to the south of Florence, where there is an unceasing continuity of cypresses and farmhouses, vineyards and olive groves that mount shrines and where a productive reality that ...