This beautiful Baroque villa has undergone a magnificent renovation, harmoniously fusing old with new, to create a modern, light-filled space.
Marmona is a beautiful, vaulted, one-storey villa that lies less than ten minutes from the Porta Rudiae, one of the three ancient gates into the old centre of Lecce, a stunning Baroque town in the south of Italy’s heel.
Set amongst olive and citrus groves with oak woods nearby, the house is in Valle Cupa, a stunning spot where many of the old Leccesse families built their summer palazzos.
The villa itself had fallen into ruin but was rescued and restored by an award-winning architectural designer and artist. The house is a triumph of richness and variety. The refined design offers guests the perfect opportunity to entertain and have fun, as well as giving time and space for quiet contemplation. The property also houses a stunning collection of 20th century fine art, photography, sculpture and furniture, including a majestic sculpture of a bull ready to charge, opposite the grand entrance portico.
Marmona comfortably sleeps 10 in five air-conditioned, en suite bedrooms, including a principal bedroom with an in-room bath tub, and a studio. White walls are the cool backdrop to the fabulous art, while poured concrete floors, with under-floor heating for the cooler months, are smooth underfoot. Copious amounts of glass frame the view to the pool and the vibrant blues and greens of the Puglian landscape.
The large barrel-ceilinged kitchen is well equipped yet stylistically pared back. There is a central marble waterfall counter that comfortably seats 10 for dining, the cool, smooth material blending beautifully with the old, warm roof stones. Open doorways lead through to the large living room, and on through to a further sitting room with an open fireplace. Both offer plenty of space for guests to relax, to chat, to admire the artwork or to lose themselves in a book or film. There is good working wifi throughout the building.
Outside, a large terrace offers separate dining and seating areas, while another terrace at the front of the house is perfect for quiet relaxation and yoga. The long, heated pool (14mx4m) is surrounded by sun loungers, poolside cushions and an outdoor shower, and overlooks a sunken olive grove. Four hectares of woods, citrus and olive groves surround the property.
Nearby Lecce is a beautiful baroque city known as the Florence of the South. It has an abundance of superb restaurants, shops and bars and is a university town with a friendly and welcoming feel. The house is close to the most beautiful sandy beaches of both the Ionian and Adriatic coasts and there are great places to swim in either direction. Guests should take the locals’ lead and see which way the wind is blowing before deciding which coast to head for.