The "Risco de Oro" is one of the most characteristic historic mansions of Tenerife. It was built in 1897 by British citizen, Mr. Edward Campbell Philpott, in the mythical Orotava Valley, in a volcanic spot of lava covered with yellow lichen, hence its name, which can be translated as the "golden hill", in the vicinity of the Taoro gardens in Puerto de la Cruz (North Tenerife).
It was declared a monument of Cultural Interest (BIC) in 2006, and it highlights not only its British colonial architecture of clearly Victorian flavor but also its vast and rich gardens. In addition, there are several outbuildings such as the garages, a chapel and auxiliary housing service premises, all of them of the same style and era.
It is a construction of three buildings that combine tiled and flat roofs and where the main building has more than 1.360m2, preserving antique furniture and where no expense was spared. During the Roaring Twenties, it was a prominent hub of social life in Tenerife. Its beautiful arcades, giving access to the magnificent palace garden, retain all the flavour of Victorian architecture.
Its gardens, more than 13,000 m2 at present, although much larger in the past, were designed by the English gardener and designer Mr. Dunn, who had already proved his skills in the design of the famous Kew Gardens on the outskirts of London. They are outstanding for the varied composition of plants and magnificent trees, highlighting the setting of this extraordinary Tenerife mansion.
As a final curiosity, let us add just a short comment to stress that this beautiful Tenerife mansion, was for sale in 2010 at the modest price of 16 million euros.
Photos: Hnos. García Núñez