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Il Geco Guestrooms

This part of the historic center of Matera located in the Sasso Caveoso area owes its name to the rich presence of the mallow on the rocky ridges. Archaeological evidences attest to the first human settlements in the Bronze Age. The Malve District, given its shape, is a typical example of rock habitat. Rupestrian habitats are an expression of how rock civilization has modified the rugged Murgia territory in order to develop its urban centers, exploiting already existing hypogean and natural cavities.
In these habitats there is the presence of a cult zone, generally a church or a cenoby such as, for example, Santa Lucia alle Malve and a common area (the famous neighborhood). Between these two common spaces were
present, following the natural morphology of the site, all the characteristic elements of a community: housing and service structures such as sheepfolds, crushers, caciolari, neviere, warehouses, granaries, obtained by exploiting the
caves present or obtained by digging the calcareous rock. The excavated rooms were subsequently provided with a façade and a small room with an oven using the same tufo blocks made from the excavation of the houses. A dense maze of connections consisting of walkways, balconies and steep stairways joined the different houses. In the common space, or neighborhood, the social life of the community took place: the children played, the women did their housework, or lay their clothes in the sun, they spun wool, chatted among themselves and controlled the children and the elderly. In addition to the presence of the oven, which guaranteed the production of bread and cakes for families, there was always a dense network of channels for the capture and decantation of rainwater, which were later collected in a series of large tanks that assured the water resources to the community itself.
This example of self-sufficient community has given Matera access to the inscription of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
We thank for the info: “Matera history of a city” Lorenzo Rota Giannatelli Editions