Roman remains at ‘open air’ museum in Albir

ALBIR MUSEUM: Open day last Sunday.

AN open day was held at Albir’s Roman villa, now an open-air museum, last Sunday.

Objects excavated at the site, including a ring, coins, seals, pottery and agricultural tools, were on display and visitors had a guided tour of the remains.

More than 7,300 people visited the Villa Romana Museum (VRA) last year, said Culture and Heritage councillor Rocio Guijarro.

The open day was organised so that local residents and visitors could celebrate the second anniversary of the VRA’s opening, she explained.

Although the villa was first discovered in 1988, formal excavations did not start until 2008.  The council, in collaboration with AlicanteUniversity, then accepted the challenge of rescuing one of the Marina Baja’s most important archaeological finds.

The villa, built between the Second and Fifth century AD, probably belonged to a wealthy Roman citizen.  It boasted central heating, drainage and the usual bath system, with hot and warm rooms as well as a cold plunge pool.

Much remains to be excavated, archaeologists believe, including both an olive press and a wine press.

Given the villa’s closeness to the beach, they suspect that fishing was also an important feature of day-to-day activities.

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