Villa Alba is a significant Victorian cultural tourism attraction. It comprises a major heritage building built and decorated between 1882 and 1884, that became transformed through successive ownerships. In 1984 the Villa Alba Preservation Committee was formed and the process of restoration of the house and garden begun. While much has been completed, the restoration remains a work in progress.
Villa Alba was decorated by the Paterson Bros. in 1883 and 1884 and has one of the most complete collections of interior decoration from the 1880s in Australia and is both advanced and unusual in its complete departure from using pre-prepared wallpaper in favour of intricate stencil and hand paint work, including panoramic views and illusionistic effects.
The garden as seen today results from Dr. James Broadbent’s horticultural knowledge and his analysis of the detailed research by Mrs. Jessie Serle; the compilation by Adshead & McQuie of information in surveyor’s field notebooks from 1894 and 1911; archaeology by Maddy Atkinson and family photographs belonging to Fripp family descendants.