Villa "Baltoji" / "White"

Address: Birutės al. 33, Palanga

The Tiskeviciai family had built nine impressive villas in the Birutė alley from mid XIX century until 1914. After the World War One, the Earls kept only three of them – “Romeo”, “Juliet” and “Balta”. Others were sold to different owners, who gradually built even more villas in these areas. Therefore, by 1940 there were fifteen spacious villas in the street. The villa “Baltoji”, also called villa “Balta (White)” is one of the few villas built from bricks, known for its graceful exterior and dynamic volume, while the stylistics are similar to Italian mansions. On the South-East end, the building is decorated with naturally decorated porch, while the south-west facade contains a bay window and a tower, covered with a four-layer roof.

It is interesting that in the interwar period Birute alley had only ten boarding houses. There was a huge competition for summer visitors. Obviously, whoever provides better catering will gain more profits and will receive more visitors. Villa “Baltoji” was the only one without a boarding house. It can be assumed that there was a reason behind it – the Villa in one way or another was a private residency for more than 50 years.

After the death of the Earl Juozapas, Marija Tiskeviciute was named the housekeeper of the villa. The Countess of the villa was exceptionally active in social events, thus her house was often visited by intelectuals, i.e. her friend, priest Jonas Maciulis-Maironis. From 1938 the Villa belonged to an activitis of Lithuania Republic’s society and country, attorney Vladas Stasinskas. In the 4th decade of 20th century, the President Antanas Smetona used to spend four weeks per year in this villa together with his family. In Palanga he was accompanied by his servants and advisors.

It seems that even during the holidays, A.Smetona used to follow his strict schedule: “After breakfast, at around 10 am, together with two under covered soldiers he used to walk to men’s beach. (…) On one quite high sand dune, the Municipality of Palanga city had built a small wooden changing room for the President and his accompanies. (…) The President used to spend approximately 3 hours at the sea and later used to have lunch. After the lunch the President used to have a walk in the park, seacoast or simply read books. The visiting time was from 4:30 to 5:00 PM. He had lunch with his family every day at 7 PM and later went to see the sunset on Palanga’s bridge.

The romantic period of Villa’s existence ended during the Soviet times. During then, the facades of te villa were significantly ruined, the interior was altered, though the function remained the same. Today the building is renovated and prepared for its new life.

Viltė Migonytė