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The island of holidays

The island of holidays

The island of holidays

The tourist boom in Sardinia is represented by the “Costa Smeralda affair” which, over an area extended for about 50 km between Arzachena and Olbia, has triggered a mechanism for the total transformation of uninhabited places that, due to its consequences, corresponds to those of the remediation of Sassu and the founding of Carbonia during the Twenty Years.

In 1962, the “Costa Smeralda Consortium” was established, which, through the strict rules dictated by the Internal Committee of Architecture, intended to safeguard architectural characteristics and the location of the buildings according to a homogeneity of intervention, shared and carried out by the Municipality of Arzachena. This program led to repeated conflicts with the Autonomous Region of Sardinia and State entities in a reciprocal exchange of responsibility. The choice that was reached was to anthropize the coasts with buildings close to the sea that irreversibly changed the territorial structure, at the expense of the involvement in tourist terms of pre-existing rural centers.

The inspiration behind the entire plan was the architect Luigi Vietti, who invented the name of Costa Smeralda, inaugurating a series of new place names that later became very well-known. His first settlement was Porto Cervo, which, starting from the hotel, then had an urban layout centered on a square, as in a medieval village, but with the variant that the central site (physical and symbolic) assigned to the church passed to boutiques and hangouts, new points of reference and use of the society that frequented the coast.

The type of architecture elaborated gave birth to the so-called Mediterranean Style, based on simple forms, obvious volumes and clear plasters. It is an eclectic architecture, which borrows some elements from the Sardinian tradition, revisiting them and above all repeating them in order to make the visual impact less effective. In fact, there is no shortage of details and finishes such as plastering with granite dust, juniper beams, Sardinian tiles (but resting on layers of polyester sheathing), dry stones, which evoke a “mythical Mediterranean” whose success has led to a degeneration of architecture in villages and speculative settlements.
These elitist choices, which blurred the line between propaganda and reality, while reaching high-level solutions - found in the first settlements - helped to give an ambiguous image of the Sardinian tradition rather than to its understanding and reuse.


20/9/2023 - 11:44


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