With its unrivalled beauty, the Villa dei Vescovi dominates the rural landscape of the Euganean Hills, in Luvigliano. The villa is a fine example of large-scale Italian civil architecture, a monument of exceptional importance, thanks to the fact that it introduced the taste for Roman classicism into the hinterland of La Serenissima. Constructed between 1535 and 1542 as a holiday home for the Bishop of Padua, Francesco Pisani, who transformed it into the venue for an intellectual circle frequented by leading literati and humanists of the period, the building is sited at the summit of the hill.
The design was entrusted to the Veronese painter and architect Giovanni Maria Falconetto; the director of works was the erudite Venetian Alvise Cornaro, responsible for the administration of the Curia. The interiors and loggias were embellished with frescoes by the Flemish artist Lambert Sustris, a great admirer of the paintings of Raphael in Rome. Over the course of the years, the villa was subject to modifications at the hands of artists and architects of the calibre of Giulio Romano, Vincenzo Scamozzi and Andrea da Valle.
The villa is flanked by a courtyard with four square flowerbeds and a lawn that recall the design of the Renaissance garden, surrounded by hornbeam hedges that emphasise the symmetry of the green spaces. The courtyard is delineated by a high wall with three gateways, from which it is possible to look out over the immense vegetable garden, which contains three vineyards where different varieties of grapes are cultivated, alongside lawned areas and an orchard with marasca cherry trees. A small lake is situated in the lowest corner of the estate, into which the water used to irrigate the vineyards naturally flows.