This gracious villa, owned for centuries by one of Italy´s oldest families, is set in wonderful gardens full of history, halfway between Bologna and Ravenna, in Emilia-Romagna. The Region of Emilia-Romagna lies to the north of Tuscany, stretching from the east coast to Liguria in the west and it is world-famous for its food - Parma ham, parmesan cheese, lasagna, tortellini, Bolognese sauce and balsamic vinegar are but a few examples of the region's rich culinary tradition. Its cities (Bologna, Modena, Parma, Ferrara, Ravenna, Piacenza, Rimini) have a heritage of medieval cathedrals, towers, castles and art treasures to explore. Bologna has no less than two leaning towers, a splendid opera house, Italy´s first university and an elegant arcaded shopping area. Opera lovers can follow in the footsteps of Verdi, one of the regions´ most famous sons. Visit the breath-taking Byzantine mosaics of Ravenna and the ceramics museum in Faenza. Car-lovers can visit the famous Ferrari factory of Maranello near Modena. Emilia-Romagna is synonymous with fabulous food and wine, renowned for its ceramics, mosaics, classical music, and it boasts a natural landscape of dramatic mountains giving way to gently rolling hills, parks and beaches. The nearest airport is Bologna. The lovely town of Imola is just 1 km from the villa: Imola has many cafes, bars and restaurants and an open-air market three mornings a week and a railway station. The historic centre has a wide range of interesting shops while there is also a modern shopping mall on the edge of the town.
Villa Gran Giardino is a rare example of an authentic Italian villa preserved in its entirety in a wonderful setting surrounded by gardens of major historic interest. This centuries-old estate consists of the main villa offered to you here, the estate parkland with its classical gardens, magical woodland inhabited by deer and pheasants, neighbouring vineyards producing the finest wines. The annexes include a farmhouse, orangery and a granary, as well as a private swimming pool and a tennis court - all set in 10 hectares of private land.
The park is featured in the list of Italy´s finest gardens and can be visited only by appointment. The gem of an estate, the Villa Gran Giardino is not open to the public, but those lucky enough to visit it renting it are entranced by the beauty of its interiors and the mystique that envelops it, making this estate and gardens the pride of the region. The villa is the perfect destination for groups who appreciate a spacious historic ambience in a secluded environment. Such famous Italian poets as Pascoli and Carducci used to visit the family of the owner a century ago, as well as important political personalities. And more recently, one of the crowned heads of Europe was a private guest of the owner, a descendant of one of Italys noblest families whose members have played many an important role in the history of the nation.
The origins of this house date back to the 15th century. Originally it was a Renaissance tower, which was transformed into a villa during the 18th century. It is elegantly laid out, over two floors, the rooms leading off, on each floor, from an imposing central hallway, decorated with delightful frescos in pale green and blue pastel shades, depicting romantic landscapes. Each floor measures approximately 350 square metres - a total of 700 m2 of living space. There are 5 bedrooms, all with views over the garden, and 4 bathrooms. The rooms are large and comfortable with authentic period furnishings and decor. 2 or 3 further bedrooms with bathrooms can be opened at additional charge in a dependance.
You may be aware that comparable houses have, almost without exception, been converted into self-catering establishments or hotels, and the scourge of modernisation has all too often stripped them of all their unique historical ambience and style, rendering them sadly anonymous. The property offered here has escaped such depredations as it has always been privately run by the family, thus retaining its authentic atmosphere. Villa Gran Giardino remains utterly unspoilt with all its original furnishings intact, giving you the chance to experience life as it may have been in the 18th century.
This is the place to embark on a voyage back in time, to long-gone eras and other worlds. You will find the warm glow of seasoned terracotta floors, one spacious room leading on to the next, gracious halls giving way to elegant drawing rooms, paintings adorning many a wall. The villa is completely furnished with antiques all in perfect keeping with the period and, as you sink into one of the many comfortable sofas, you will drift right back into the past. Then the gardens will beckon you, just a step or two away, the perfect setting for a romantic stroll with your beloved among the roses and fragrant lavender.
Additional amenities include: tennis court, lift from ground floor to upper floor, outdoor area for al fresco dining, two 4-ring gas hobs....Read more
As featured in USA TODAY and recommended by Travel + Leisure in its annual Villa Guide:
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