On the southernmost point of Fuerteventura, which belongs to the Canary Islands, in a place protected by cliffs on the one hand, and on the other hand, open always to the calm ocean, is the estate of Winter.
The house was built in the 40th year of the 20th century. More accurate information could not be found. The villa was built by prisoners from the concentration camp Tethius. According to their testimonies, they built a runway in the villa and saw tunnels going into the mountains. Engineer Winter was engaged in construction. Winter himself lived here until old age. The island of Fuerteventura at that time was little populated by people. The Germans evicted a few residents from the Jandia peninsula and started building the house.
One thing is clear – they were looking for a secluded place on a deserted island, protected by cliffs and with access to the ocean. This villa is surrounded by stories about tunnels from the house to the ocean, about submarines, about military and genetic experiments, about the arrival of Hitler and other high-ranking officials in Germany.
We go to the villa with our Spanish friends Inessa and Miguel, who live on the island. We settled on the shore of the Atlantic Ocean in the town of Gran Tarajal.
With Miguel and Iness, we drove from Gran Tarahal to the Jandia Peninsula, to the lighthouse on the southernmost point of the island, to the town of Kefet, in which Villa Winter is located. The closer we get to the place we are interested in, the more difficult the road becomes.
We are driving along a dirt road, loops rising into the mountains.
Like, and on the whole island, the mountains here are black, without greenery.
Rare milkweeds and thorns grow on the hillsides and serve as food for the goats that live here. Miguel says that several years ago one car could drive along this road, and even earlier, there was practically no road. This is the first riddle. How to build a villa, and then live on it without roads? It turns out that everyone was brought by airplanes and submarines. Near the villa there is a small airfield.
The closer to Winter’s house, the stronger the wind blows. Imagine an island in the Atlantic Ocean, one side looks at the African continent, the other at the European one. Fuerteventura has an elongated shape. At the junction of the warmer ocean from the side of Africa with the cold, on the other hand, the wind always blows, always the waves knocking down, even in calm weather. It has its own charm – a seething ocean, wind, black rocks.
We enter the house, white with a patio inside.
The house has a tower.
The owner of Pedro Fumero gives us a tour of the house and the underground floor.
It is good that we have friends who are translating for us from Spanish into Russian what the host is telling us. He is the grandson of a person serving the villa during the lifetime of engineer Winter on it. The house smells of old things. Everything remains here, as was the case with the Germans.
as our guide, who was here, says. In the glass stand in the center of the room there are German helmets
and caps, pieces of the human spine, flasks, pharmacy type.
Then the owner offers to go down to the underground floors. He asks not to take pictures. We find ourselves in a room with a stove. Our guide says that there was a crematorium. He knocks on the wall, assuring that there are stoves, as in German concentration camps. It is easy to believe in it, because it is very difficult here without his explanations. We go further down the corridor. The conductor shows the place where they shot people from a window that is invisible in a room with stoves and a large drain for blood and water. We go along a long corridor with branches. One of the corridors has a tunnel down. He goes somewhere deeper.
The guide says that Winter Villa is a German base on a deserted island with access to the ocean. Secret genetic experiments were conducted here, weapons were tested.
With relief, we leave the underground tunnels of the house on the street. I am not inclined to fully trust the words of the current owner or our guide. Some falsity is felt. He is interested in all sorts of fables to attract new visitors. But, without any doubt, in the basements and tunnels of the house is bad, there is the energy of death and something beyond. And around the house there is the power of wind, ocean and black hills. At the tip of Cape Jandiah are the largest winds and waves.
We go around the house. There are bullet marks on the wall from the courtyard side. The windows of the lower floor are covered with bars. The owner takes out the grill and shows the tunnel. I looked closely, but did not see the end of the tunnel.
We get down to the ocean.
From here the house seems small and toyish. Oncoming waves wash away the burden of past stories, but do not let us into the ocean. In these places they don’t swim, here the waves and the wind are stronger than people.