1. Historic Lucca Home
Lucca is famous as the birthplace of Puccini, the opera composer responsible for La bohème and Madama Butterfly. It also hosts an annual Summer Festival in the historic city centre with a star-studded cast of acts including over recent years Sting, Elton John and this year, Celine Dion. This two-bedroom apartment in a beautiful palazzo puts you at the heart of the action, directly in the historic walled city centre of lovely Lucca. There is a lift, communal gardens and underground parking, a true rarity in Lucca but one that puts the glorious Tuscan countryside encircling the city within easy touch.
For sale priced €500,000.
2. North Tuscan Village Life
In the wooded Apuan Hills north of Lucca, Pescaglia is a typical rural Tuscan hill village. In the centre with wonderful south-facing rural views over the valley, this beautiful stone palazzo dating to the sixteenth century combines the best of historical beauty and modern convenience. Currently run as a luxury B&B it has eight bedrooms and bathrooms, staff accommodation and extensive living rooms over three floors and could easily be returned to be a private family home. The one hectare grounds include both a communal and private pool and gardens.
For sale priced €1,350,000.
3. Florentine pied-a-terre
On the south banks of the Arno immediately across the Ponte Vecchio, Oltrarno is an authentic area of central Florence that’s surprisingly off the main tourist route. It’s filled with cosy restaurants, bars and antique shops and is home to skilled craftsmen working in tiny ateliers. Its big showstopping monument is Palazzo Pitti, filled with museums. In a medieval building upgraded to a palazzo in the sixteenth century, this charming one-bedroom apartment offers a central Florentine address with delightful character including ceiling frescos.
For sale priced €395,000.
4. A Restoration Beauty in Florence’s Chianti Hills
Perfect Tuscan countryside within easy reach of Florence is one of the main selling points of this elegant five-bedroom villa in Montespertoli, a tranquil hilltop Chianti village. Recently refurbished to a high level, the villa offers a spacious light-filled home that opens out pleasingly to the carefully maintained gardens. The beautiful interior style mixes classical proportions with a pared back contemporary design including travertine marble. Outside beyond the lawn there is a saltwater infinity pool and an olive grove with over 100 olive trees. The immaculate finish means you can move in and immediately start living la dolce vita.
For sale priced €2,500,000.
5. Venice. A Noble Apartment
The first floor of the grandest Italian homes was the piano nobile, the noble floor and this three-bedroom apartment close to Campo San Polo is a beautiful example. Soaring high ceilings, some with wooden beams and some with detailed frescos, original marble terrazzo floors and a reception room that opens on to a balcony over a canal make this a perfect piece of historic Venice. The apartment, five minutes-stroll from Campo San Polo, has 460 square metres of living space with two internal staircases. San Polo is the smallest and most central of Venice’s six districts and includes intimate lanes, traditional squares and the world-famous Rialto Bridge.
For sale priced €2,900,000.
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