In Hungarian / Magyarul – Egy Utazásmániás Tyúk Naplója: Rodosz – másképp – egy elhagyatott szanatórium és a Mussolini Villa
I’m Living on the Island Rhodes the whole summer gives you the opportunity to see all the important places, all the nice sights everyone talks about and Rhodes is famous for and of course all the beautiful beaches. If you have seen everything, let’s say: Rhodes Old Town, Mandraki harbour, Lindos, Prassonissi, Monolithos castle, the nice beaches like Afandou, Tsambika, St. Paul’s Bay, Anthony Quinn Bay…etc, then I have something different to suggest to you to see, other than the traditional touristy stuff:
These are remnants of the Italian history in Rhodes. Naming there is an old abandoned Sanatorium in Eleousa and a Villa called ‘Mussolini Villa’ in Profitis Ilias built for Mussolini, who had never seen it.
The Sanatorium in Eleousa
So turning to the west at Kolymbia and later passing by the Seven Springs you soon reach a small square on the left with a church and some abandoned buildings. The sanatorium is on the right. I have a vivid imagination so I connect an abandoned sanatorium from the 1930s to a hospital, there comes connection to an asylum, there the abandoned & haunted part and we end at something like ‘The House on the Haunted Hill’ … (I hope most of you have seen the movie…)
But actually – thank God – it is nothing like that in the reality. It is an abandoned house, yes, hopefully no ghosts living there (we didn’t meet any, but you never know), but there a photography fan can have much inspiration if one has much imagination!
It is so colourful inside! The fireplace is red, yellow, orange, purple with an apple sign on the top. Why apple? Was it part of the treatment to draw over the fireplace? I don’t think we will ever know the answers to these important questions…
There is another fireplace on the 1st floor, green and red. The walls are blue, green, pink (!), purple, the doors are yellow and red. Colours, colours and COLOURS!!!
Go inside, go to the first floor too and take pictures. Don’t be afraid, it is not dangerous (ok watch out the holes on the first floor) and you are not alone, there are a lot of tourists (a secret group that knows about it). Now you know it too that it exists.
While walking inside you will have a spooky feeling for sure, YOU WERE WARNED! Enjoy! 🙂
History of the Sanatorium
I found some history too: The Sanatorium was built for Italians, it was for patients with tuberculosis for 23 years (1947-1970). Although the village of Eleousa was not ideal from a climatic point of view, the area has strong cold winds, but it was ideal for quarantine of the patients (yes for sure, it is far from everything, the illness spread in the air, they were isolated here). More than 1500 patients from Greece were hospitalised here.
While looking for some history I bumped into the disease. Did you know?
Tuberculosis exists since the ancient times, even in Ancient Egypt in mummies they could find it. It was seen as a “romantic disease” in the 19th century, when there was no cure yet. The slow progress of the disease allowed for a “good death” as sufferers could arrange their affairs. A quarter of all deaths in Europe are estimated to have been caused by tuberculosis during the 19th and early 20th century. The composer Frederic Chopin, writer Franz Kafka and the painter Paul Gaugin had it too, among others. But even in modern times famous people died of it, like Vivien Leigh (Gone with the Wind). We have been using vaccines against it since the 1930s but the illness still exists, mostly in developing countries.
So I think that is enough about the sanatorium and about tuberculosis, don’t you think?…
Don’t you miss the fountain a bit farther!
There is another building in the nearby you could see. After discovering this Sanatorium we went further to Profitis Ilias (mountains, forest, hmmm not much to see) and we found the Villa di Vecchi (named after a governor), which is called the ‘Mussolini Villa’. Built for the fascist dictator during the Italian occupation, abandoned too, don’t know about ghosts either but I wouldn’t spend a night there alone by myself… It is on the top of the hill, not so difficult to find, stairs lead up there. Broken windows, walls painted with graffiti, rubbish everywhere – this is how this villa looks. Hmm, we expected more from this, but took some nice pictures too. Not as inspired as in the previous one but was ok, we saw it.
We almost bumped into our colleagues, who were visiting the same buildings on the same day-off. They told me they had found in the nearby an abandoned hotel, where doors just slam and you can run out of the building because you are scared like hell, like they had done 🙂 Ghosts?! Who knows…? For Your Info, only if you are interested in some more scary stuff….
Here you can see some pictures (= MEMORIES) we took (I was there for the second time that is why i wear different clothes, not because I changed for the photo shooting…)
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