Nazareth Estate

Finca Nazaret can be seen from a conglomerate of streets through which no one passes. The network of brand new avenues overlaps the agricultural lines of the Benimagrell area, revealing the old olive plantations or the remains of the Camí Real de la Vila Joiosa, where the entrance to the beautiful estate is located. It is accessed through an ashlar doorway with an arch, topped by a lintel entablature, under a pinnacle decorated with scrolls of different sizes. A green wrought iron door with floral settings supports the letters “Nazareth”, along with a small sign that reminds us that access to the property is prohibited.

Although Nazareth is currently abandoned, for centuries it symbolized the Alicante oligarchy. We know that in the middle of the 19th century its owner was Mrs. Agripina García de Ferrándiz, and at the beginning of the 20th century it was owned by Mr. Juan Rubert Orts, who was a councilor of the Alicante City Council. As a landowner, he also fought for the arrival of the Riegos de Levante waters to the Huerta. In his day, the parish priest of Benimagrell thanked the Orts family for the repairs carried out in the neighboring hermitage of San Roque.

The considerable dimensions of the construction are a good example of the importance of the estate. Also noteworthy is the noble entrance to the house, which was on the upper floor, and which was accessed by a beautiful staircase located on the south façade, which has now disappeared. The estate was associated with agricultural exploitation, but the various changes in use resulted in numerous reforms carried out in the 18th century and in the second half of the 19th century.

The interior features a large hall with two bays connected by a semicircular arch. The staircase is arranged in this space and its landing continues in a long gallery. As finishes, the pavement formed by ceramic pieces of brick stands out, arranged in a herringbone pattern, with a “double that” engraved on the visible side. The parapets of the staircase are made up of a mixed wooden railing and square wrought iron bars. The roof is lintel, and in the vestibule we find a curb built with a piece of stone. There is a cellar in a semi-basement attached to the south façade.

The elevations are plastered in mortar. In them the aforementioned reforms can be distinguished, with nineteenth-century tastes being appreciated in the surrounding of the openings with plaster moldings, although the balconies are possibly from the eighteenth century.

The garden in very poor condition is located in front of the northwest and southeast facades, highlighting its pine forest, also very deteriorated. The architect Mr. Santiago Varela said in the eighties that there was a group of four curved benches arranged around a huge ombú. The ombú is a tree native to the Argentine Pampas known by the nickname bellasombra. Today the benches seem to have been stripped of their original place, as they have fallen next to the old tree. The northwest courtyard has a huge bougainvillea, near the guard house. This service house is still inhabited today. The presence of numerous white poplars in front of the west façade is striking, a riverside tree that raises suspicion of the nearby presence of groundwater, since they apparently enjoy good health.

At some point in the last century, the Nazareth estate was called Villa Dolores. Today the Nou Nazareth neighborhood is caught between two worlds; an agricultural one that ceased to exist decades ago; another urban that has not just arrived. Only ghosts walk its streets filled with street furniture, traffic signs, streetlights, treeless tree pits and asphalt roads covered with bushes. Vines, olive trees and carob trees are no longer cultivated in the fields of Benimagrell. Their lands await the arrival of new neighbors.