Luxury villa vacations in Italy are becoming increasingly popular, as the well-traveled look for lifestyle experiences on the highest end. Why not suggest clients vacation in the former house of a prince, the tower of a bishop, or a winemaker's villa?
Like other high-end rental agencies, Florence, Italy-based Sanctuary Villas is committed to "smoothing the process" for their guests. Every group is assigned a "Poppin" (pop-in)—a kind of fairy godperson who shows them the villa, stocks the refrigerator, books day trips and tours, takes them to the local village for an orientation tour and generally is there to bridge the gap between the villa and hotel experience.
Villas Executive Gaia Anichini de Bueger ([email protected])
showed us a luxury property in Sanctuary's 2007 catalogue, the recently
restored Villa de Panzano in
The house has an enormous pool lined with travertine marble, perfect for spending a quiet afternoon reading or admiring the view.
Homebase Abroad represents 40 Italian properties at the high end, all with options for full service. According to President Mara Solomon ([email protected]; 781-545-5112), it's important to realize that, for some clients, luxury equals privacy, while for others, decompression means being waited on hand and foot.
One of Homebase Abroad's listings, the Villa Arienzo,
is a fully staffed luxury villa near Positano on the
More private and rustic is their Borgo di Bastia Creti
Offering Hassler-style service and luxury in the country, Borgo di Bastia Creti is in a medieval village dating to 1200 and including a monastery. There are five beautifully restored houses of ancient stone on the property, sleeping from two to six, including the Cipressi and Ginestra, which face each other across a flowered courtyard and are ideal for a larger group traveling together.
The grounds comprise an expansive six acres, with large
swimming pool and tennis court, and tables set under the oaks. The atmosphere
is that of a quiet, private village, which is exactly what it is—it's so
private and tricky to find, in fact, that the owners recommend guests arrive by
car and driver, if possible, and will assist in making those arrangements. The
property is 18 miles from the airport near
Torre Almonte features two apartments, each of which takes up an entire floor (more than 1,200 square feet) and comprises two double bedrooms, two bathrooms, a kitchen, dining area and living room with a massive fireplace. The apartment on the fourth floor has more comfy sofas, but both are very well designed. Prospective guests who appreciate contemporary design should look at photographs of the rooms before choosing an apartment to make sure their preference is met. A third, smaller apartment has one double bedroom and one bath, along with a living room. The tower is also available in its entirety for larger groups. On the ground floor is a large dining room and serving area, as well as a contemporary living room, perfect for pre-dinner cocktails. On the roof, there is a terrace with panoramic views of rolling hills, olive orchards and vineyards.
Fifteen minutes along
This villa, with its frescoed ceilings and glittering
chandeliers, has seven bedrooms, seven bathrooms and a fully modernized
kitchen. A lakeside terrace wraps around the house, which was built in the 19th
century. The house is managed by IC
Bellagio. Contact Program Director Emanuela Molinari ([email protected],
39-031-95-2059 ext. 20, or 39-334-675-9394).