Ticino Film Commission

The former Pompeian swimming pool of Arzo


The former Pompeian swimming pool of Arzo

In the past, this used to be Arzo’s public swimming pool, part of the municipality of Mendrisio.

 Inaugurated on August 1, 1932 and frequented until the 1960s, this public “Pompeian” swimming pool was one of the first in Ticino. The swimming pool was created by Ferdinando Bustelli (1865-1935), a philanthropist born in Arzo who made his fortune in Buenos Aires, Argentina and designed by artist-architect Francesco Della Casa (1884-1933) from Meride.

 Today, the former swimming pool of Arzo, located on the road next to the Melide Causeway, remains in the heart of a small forest, hidden among the trees. It’s been abandoned for almost 20 years and almost forgotten by the majority.

 The concrete surface was at the time covered with sand, which created some kind of exotic beach-like atmosphere. Adding to this, on either side there were once two symmetrical Greek-style pergolas that would add a Greek temple touch to this place.

Inside the decadent but magnificent empty blue space, the structure is closed around ninety degrees and opens directly to the woods from the deeper side of the basin, while the rest of the bathing area has a sloping semi-circle enclosed by four steps that were once submerged in the water.