Sunday, February 13, 2011

Villa Margherita

 Villa Margherita c. 1930

 Contemporary photos of the Villa's deterioration

A contemporary view of the Villa showing losses of major architectural components.

Villa Margherita is located at 4 South Battery in Charleston, SC and was built c. 1892 as a wedding gift for Daisy Breaux Simonds. After her husbands death in 1905 the home was converted into a luxury inn which operated until 1953. The home has lost extensive architectural features such as the cupola, balustrade, and a Pompeian colonnade which surrounded Charleston's first indoor swimming pool. The home is in a state of deterioration and what appears to be abandonment. This is one of the most intriguing homes in Charleston and one of my favorites.


  1. Every time I am in Charleston, about every 4 months,(I live in Columbia SC) I go by this once beautiful mansion. I am so very sad that it is going in such disrepair. It is too bad the city can't do something about it. I am not sure what draws me to it, but I always have to see it when I am in Charleston. My wish would be that it could be put back to its once grandeur appearance. If I had the means I would restore it for the woman who owns it. (She probably does not have the money it would take to fix it up.) It is a big part of Charleston's history and needs to be kept up. I would love to see inside it, but can't find any pictures on the internet. It is crumbling before our eyes. What a beautiful masterpiece!

  2. What a coincidence, I had the misfortune of growing up in Columbia, SC and then lived in Charleston while I went to the College of Charleston for Historic Preservation and Art History. Currently living in NYC working for one of AD's top 100 Interior Designers.

    Villa Margherita is one of Charleston's treasures despite it's significant architectural losses. But I have to agree, if it was restored, or simply cleaned up it would lose much of it's interest to me. Actually on my way to the Holy City as we speak.

  3. I did not grow up in Columbia. I am from the Midwest. I'm not sure if I would lose interest once Villa Margherita was repaired. I would probably enjoy watching it being restored and continue walking by it for as long as I come to Charleston.

  4. I actually had the opportunity to speak with the owner of this house, which has been one of my favorite homes on South Battery. Amazingly, the owner inherited the home from her parents whom purchased it in 1962. The owners last name is Wilson, and she is quite elderly. Her father, and herself were both medical doctors although she is retired. From what I gathered during the conversation, she is somewhat of a hermit and still lives in the home and is a very moderate person. Also, she owns several buildings near the market. One she mentioned that she owns is the old Meritage building. She is a very sweet lady, and I thanked her for sharing all the info she gave. I tried to see if she would let me see the interior of Villa Margherita, but she declined. She did however tell me that there is a bathroom in the home thats decorated in all purple tiles.

  5. That bathroom sounds amazing, would love to see it one day.