The Garden

The Luigi Rovati Foundation Garden is an eco-sustainable, intimate and elegant pocket garden. The project is designed by Marilena Baggio, architect and landscape architect, and aims to give back to the city a private space for public use where one can pause, chat, meditate and be inspired by the beauty of the ancient world of Etruscan art and contemporary Milanese art and cosmopolitanism.


The 1,200 square metre green space is bordered by high perimeter walls on three sides, behind the historic palazzo built in 1871, which survived the bombings of 1943 and was transformed in the 1960s, designed by MCA - Mario Cucinella Architects, today the area is the headquarters of the Luigi Rovati Foundation.


In the project to restore the garden, which is subject to landscape protection, the existing historical tree species are preserved in harmony with new plant and vegetative grafts identifying the Milanese garden landscape by Piermarini and Pollack. At first glance, the garden does not show itself in its entirety: only as you walk through it do you reveal small corners defined by shrubs and undergrowth beds that give it polychromy and liveliness. In the spring-summer season, the soft, soothing colours of white blossoms and shades of green predominate; in winter, red and yellow hues light up in seemingly bare spots, contrasting with the façade of the Palazzo.


The tree species are represented by limes, hackberry trees, beech trees and magnolias; the shrub species by hydrangeas, dwarf nandine, camellias, azaleas, rhododendrons, dogwood, dogwood, honeysuckle and Japanese sedge. The herbaceous plan consists of acidophiles convallaria japonica, hellebores and vinca. The rustic Festuca arundinacea lawn creates a green, compact, low-maintenance, drought-resistant turf.


The irrigation system consists of a drip irrigation system for the trees and shrubs and a sprinkler system for the lawn and herbaceous species with a single control unit serving six different lines. Spotlights placed on the ground as well as some installed on the trees illuminate the vegetation and pathway.


Like the building, the garden also meets the parameters of the LEED protocol certification and received the international GOLD LEED certification in February 2023.