- Cultural monuments
The old Fontik (House “Lav”) in Vižinada is the oldest public building for secular purposes preserved in the area of the municipality. It was built in the 15th century, before Vižinada became part of the Venetian Republic at the beginning of the 16th century. It consists of rustic stone blocks on the ground floor with two portals (south and east side), as well as a window display to the east side. On the left side of the southern portal on the ground floor, there is a tariff set up from 1726, which recorded and regulated the payment of fees for trading and navigating the river Mirna. In Baštija, the port at the river Mirna, there was a civil servant of the Venetian Republic, whose duty it was to enable, carry out and oversee the navigation. All that is left from Baštija is the preserved church of the Mother of God.
On the outer walls of the first floor there are openings (mullioned windows, 15th century), among which the eastern door is now embedded in the window. Sometimes it was important that the front door was on the first floor. The door was approached by a stone balcony which was held by two stone consoles similar to those from the balcony at the Maraston house. These data are known from drawings of the cistern and fontik from the beginning of the 19th century (maybe around 1806), by the author and famous architect Pietro Nobile, a prominent designer of late classicism in Vienna. The drawings of Vižinada and other Istrian monuments were later used for designing many buildings and monuments all over Europe. The balcony could be accessed via a stone staircase. This renaissance arm of the staircase has also a balustrade and was right opposite the baroque staircase on the northern side of the façade of the same street. These were originally the most significant examples of baroque and renaissance staircases with balustrades in Istria.
On the southern façade there is the renaissance lion of Saint Marc. It belongs to the most famous sculpture works of this type of monument. It is compared with some examples from Koper, stone lions from Motovun and some other sites in Istria and throughout the Serenissima. South from the Fontik, beside the cistern, there is the house of the family De Fachinetti, who due to the stone lion and in order to distinguish themselves from other numerous families with the same name, were called De Leon. The house was dismantled during the time of filming Kelly’s Heroes. During the demolition of the building, the north-western pillar of the cistern was damaged, whose part was partially returned to the original place during reconstruction. North of the Fontik there are the houses that belonged to different members of the De Fachinetti family. The first was built in the 17th century (House Teležar), the second – the northern one, was built by Marin De Fachinetti at the beginning of the 18th century (House Vižintin).
From the 16th to 18th century, Vižinada was a place of rapid growth, when the main square was built. A kind of guarantee and security of life at that time in Vižinada was certainly the Fontik itself that was used as a storage space for grain and other local products that in difficult times and during droughts, along with water from the cistern, could be distributed to needy citizens.