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One of Palermo's great villa palaces, built in the Liberty style, sits within a spectacular garden. The villa was constructed in 1886 by Joseph Whitaker -- grandson of the famous English gentleman and wine merchant, Ingham, who moved to Sicily in 1806 and made a fortune producing Marsala wine. Whitaker had trees shipped to Palermo from all over the world to plant around his villa. These included such rare species as Dragon's Blood, an enormous banyan tree that happens to be the only one found in Europe. Local high society flocked here for lavish parties, and even George V and Queen Mary of England visited. In World War II, Gen. George Patton temporarily stayed here as he planned the invasion of southern Italy. The villa today is sumptuously furnished with antiques and artifacts from all over the world. The Sala d'Estate (Summer Room) is particularly stunning, with trompe l'oeil frescoes covering the walls and ceiling. A few years ago this aristocratic villa became the subject of controversy: It was discovered that Mafiosi were hiding weapons in and around the villa gardens.