Common floor plans for the first villas of the Roman Empire were rectangular and built around a garden and an open atrium. Early Renaissance villa floor plans, such as those designed by Giuliano da Sangallo and Andrea Palladio, were all bilaterally symmetrical or radially symmetrical.
There were two types of villas built by the Romans: the villa urbana and the villa rustica. The villa urbana had a smaller floor plan, while the villa rustica had a much larger floor plan to house all of the servants that ran the country estate.
Villa di Poggio a Caiano, designed by da Sangallo, and Villa Cornaro, designed by Palladio, are excellent examples of the square-shaped radially symmetrical villas that also had bilaterally symmetrical facades. The architects designed these villas so the inhabitants could always know exactly where they were and how each room related to the rest of the house's plan.