Robert Whitehead commissioned G. Bianchini, an architect from Trieste, to design his villa in 1878. The three-storey house still exists in a somewhat altered form, but with an almost unrecognizable interior. It is a typical example of classicism. The entrance façade is south-oriented and has a very dynamic architectural moulding with prominent bow windows and an understated but large entrance altana with a terrace on top of it. The building was upgraded several times, and significant modifications were designed by Enrico Biliscoka in 1886, adding staff offices and rooms for drawing. Otherwise, besides its administrative function, the villa also served as a residential building.
Robert Whitehead honoured Rijeka with another very representative object in the city centre. It is a commercial and residential building at Dolac no. 7 which was designed for a distinguished industrialist by architect Giacomo Zammattio in 1888. This building, also known as Casa Veneziana, certainly represents one of the most valuable examples of Rijeka’s Historicism touched by the spirit of Venetian Gothic art.
The Villa Whitehead is an example of historicism in Rijeka. Today it has been restored and protected. The original interior has not been preserved. Today it is privately owned by the company Teri Crotec.
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