Site History and Significance
A Unique Eighteenth-Century Suburban Villa
Quinta de Presa is a unique eighteenth-century suburban villa located on the outskirts of downtown Lima, north of the Rímac River. Built in a late rococo style by Pedro Carrillo de Albornoz, a member of Lima´s aristocracy and a younger son of Count of Montemar IV, the complex is named after his aunt Isabel de la Presa Carrillo de Albornoz who bequeathed the property to him. Quinta de Presa reflects the refined history of the Spanish-Creole aristocracy of Lima during the Age of Enlightenment, who used such villas for leisure activities as well as for cultural and scientific pursuits. The property includes a residence, a mill, outbuildings, a courtyard, and extensive gardens.
The Peruvian State purchased the complex in 1920 and in 1935 a museum devoted to the legacy of the Viceroyalty period was installed on the second floor. After a short term, the museum closed. In 1972, Quinta de Presa was declared a National Cultural Heritage site. It was restored in the 1980s and again in the 1990s, but a sustainable use for the site was not found. Quinta de Presa fell into disrepair and is now the focus of efforts to restore the building and use the property as an element of neighborhood revitalization.
2012 World Monuments Watch
Quinta de Presa was included on the 2012 World Monuments Watch to bring attention to the dilapidated state of this exceptional building and its potential for rehabilitation and development as a community asset. Located only minutes away from Lima’s Historic Center, Quinta de Presa could provide the often overlooked district of Rímac with a vehicle for promoting tourism, cultural events, and economic opportunities. Combined with the Alameda de los Descalzos and Paseo de Aguas, also included on the 2012 Watch, there is a timely opportunity to use heritage sites in the district as a catalyst for positive change. It was identified as a priority project for World Monuments Fund's (WMF) 50th Anniversary.
Planning for Future Restoration
WMF supported the planning phase for the restoration of Quinta de Presa, including a feasibility study to determine an adequate use for the site, emphasizing cultural activities. The study recommended the creation of a Peruvian Textiles and Costume Museum at the site. In 2015, an agreement to rehabilitate Quinta de Presa was signed by the Ministry of Culture, the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Tourism, the Patronato del Rímac, and WMF. Between then and 2017, WMF Peru and the Patronato del Rímac developed the technical construction proposal and investment studies respectively for this public investment project, which was set to be executed by Plan Copesco Nacional.
In June 2021, the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Tourism through Plan Copesco Nacional announced an investment of over six million dollars for the recovery of Quinta de Presa.
The work to be carried out will include the restoration and conservation of the main historical building, and the old mill; the inclusion of ornamental elements in the garden; landscaping; and the creation of exhibition rooms.
World Monuments Fund safeguards cultural heritage around the globe, ensuring our treasured places are preserved for present and future generations.
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