Taormina experienced a long period of decline during the Spanish domination and up until the 18th century when it was able to renew its prestige by becoming one of the most fascinating destinations for foreigners coming to Sicily. Thanks to this, an evocative image of Sicily’s historical and natural treasures was diffused throughout the world. The English have always been drawn to Sicily, so much so that Robert Hawthorn Kitson was so struck by its beauty that 3 years later he designed his future home and established his residence.
He would call the villa and garden Casa Cuseni and was so inspired by the villas of the Italian Renaissance that he built in homage to that style. In his design the garden is of great importance. Built on split-level terraces that rise steeply towards the villa, they are strewn with giare, terracotta vases, and Rococo-decorated basins and fountains. The most captivating part of the garden is found on a hill behind the house, paved with mosaic cobblestones displaying the use of local materials and craftsmanship.