Private island was rich-man’s paradise before string of grisly murders, unexplained deaths & tragedies saw it slowly rot

Private island was rich-man’s paradise before string of grisly murders, unexplained deaths & tragedies saw it slowly rot

A PRIVATE island has been left to rot as its sinister past sent residents running for the hills.

The “Cursed” Island of Gaiola was once a hotspot for the rich but it has a dark and twisted history of disappearances, drownings and murder.

Getty – ContributorThe Island of Gaiola was left to rot after it was believed to be cursed[/caption]

GettyThe island sits just off the coast of Naples and has just one villa[/caption]

Credit: WikipediaAn earlier picture of the now-abandoned villa[/caption]

Gaiola sits off the coast of Naples and although some might think its a scenic picnic destination – as it’s so close to the shore you can swim up to it – no one has dared set foot there for years.

Abandoned and isolated the eerie island has just one crumbling villa that towers above the murky water.

The location was once popular with the ancient Romans, who built a temple to Venus there.

Then known as Euplea, legend has it the fabled Roman poet Virgil was a fan of the island and taught his students there.

The spot is saturated with ancient legends which – even to this day- keep the local people far away.

In the 1800s, a hermit nicknamed “The Wizard” lived on the island and was able to survive thanks to the charity of fishermen.

The Wizard mysteriously disappeared and many locals now believe he cursed the island before he left.

Soon after his departure a villa was built on the island.

Hans Braun from Switzerland lived on the island in the 1920s.

Tragically he was found dead with his body wrapped inside a rug.

Soon after his wife drowned in the sea.

The next owner, a German named Otto Grunback, died of a heart attack while staying in the villa.

Another owner, Maurice-Yves Sandoz, went mad shortly after buying the property and later committed suicide in a Swiss mental hospital.

The island also once belonged to Gianni Agnelli, the head of Fiat, who then had many of his relatives die.

Multi-billionaire Paul Getty bought the island soon after his grandson was kidnapped.

And the island’s last owner, Gianpasquale Grappone, who owned an insurance company, was sent to prison because of a debt.

The island has now been abandoned in fear, the villa remaining uninhabited as it slowly falls into disrepair.

It is now owned by the Campania Region authorities – who established the Gaiola Underwater Park and designated the area as marine protected.

GettyThe island is close to the shore and can be swam to easily[/caption]

GettyRoman poet, Virgil, taught his students on the island, the text reads Virgil’s school[/caption]

No one dares set foot on the island because of its dark history

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