Friday 27 July 2012

Going Local at Festivals

A great way to get a feel for Umbria and Tuscany and their people is to attend a local sagra (festival). During the summer there's one taking place nearly every weekend in some small towns or villages, usually with a food theme, such as Sagra dei funghi (mushroom festival) or Sagra della zuppa (soup festival). Held in the evening, the events dish out plenty to eat and drink, and there's usually dancing, sometimes with live music. Old-school ballroom dance moves are the norm- you're likely to see couples fox-trotting or doing the tango. These are village affairs and just a few people speak English. There are no numbers to call for information. The festivals are advertised only by crudely printed signs on the side of the road. Attending a sagra is a unique opportunity to experience the Italian culture.

Author: Sonia Tardetti Piergiovanni

Trasimeno Blues 2012

I had a wonderful evening last night. One of those typically spontaneous and unplanned experiences that happen so often in Umbia. I decided to have dinner at La Cantina in Castiglione del Lago – one of my old favourite restaurants by the Lake Trasimeno. Ate in the garden overlooking the lake. Food was, as always, excellent and I got a lovely welcome. Castiglione is magical at night... bathed in golden light, pleasantly lively and with music everywhere. I decided to go for a walk after the meal and wandered down to the Rocca where I discovered a night market and Trasimeno Blues band in full swing. There was a wonderful atmosphere. Where else would one find stalls full of everything – from colourful dresses and scarves to exquisite hand crafted silver jewellery nestling amongst majestic olive trees? The colour combinations were just amazing! During the Trasimeno Blues Festival there are different bands playing in different venues all week, so I will definitely be dropping in to some more concerts.

Author: Sonia Tardetti

Monday 23 July 2012

Property in Tuscany

You might want to consider the romantic sunsets and Renaissance architecture of property in Tuscany. With its charming medieval hill towns and fantastic capital Florence, Tuscany has long been a favourite spot for those looking to invest in property in Italy. From the tiniest hamlet to the magnificent Florence property in Tuscany is diverse and plentiful. With its quiet lanes, cypress trees and creamy coloured villas; property in Tuscany never ceases to enchant. The varied landscape of Tuscany and property in Tuscany is typical of what Italy has to offer.

Friday 20 July 2012

Luxury villas for sale in Italy

Choosing your luxury villa in Italy for sale is just the beginning of an adventure and you will want it to be exactly as you have imagined. Choosing the right house to buy that suits your individual needs can be difficult and time-consuming. Abode Srl can help you find the perfect property for sale for you in Umbria or in Tuscany. We represent the most beautiful houses in Tuscany: a refined selection of exceptional and exclusive luxury villas with swimming pools, tastefully converted, farm holidays and cottages, attractive apartments in Cortona or casali in Umbria. We propose only high quality houses for sale in Italy, extraordinary luxury estates, from large group houses to small intimate cottages all personally chosen by our team. Almost all of our Tuscan or Umbrian villas and farmhouses have private pools perfect for relaxing in the lovely countryside. When looking to purchase in Italy one of your first choices will be to select a property agent. Whether you are looking for a rental property or one to purchase then you will undoubtedly wish to select a company that will best suit your needs. There are a large number of estate agents, but we are a registered Italian Realtor and therefore conform to the guidelines of the industry's governing body Fiaip. We are fully insured, a clear sign you are dealing with a highly reputable and professional company. Our website shows only a sample selection of the property we have for sale in Tuscany and Umbria, but we are adding new luxury villas daily. Our team have over 20 years experience in the Italian property market. If you are looking for a house to buy come to us and we will help you achieve your goals.

Luxury villa rentals in Italy

Abode Srl is a luxury villa provider. We pride ourselves on providing our clients with a quality product, excellent service, and great value.

Abode Srl represents villas in Italy (abode all Umbria and Tuscany). Our villas range in size from 1-10 bedrooms and most are equipped with pools, maids and chefs. We have villas for every occasion: weddings, vow renewal parties, romantic getaways, golf, tennis, and spa retreats, corporate outings, family reunions, and trips with special friends. Wherever your getaway brings you, Abode Srl specialists will provide you with a luxury villa and will take care of all of your accommodations and special requests. Many villas are located near restaurants, bars, tennis courts, golf courses, and historic sites.

Our professional villa specialists have an intimate knowledge of not only the destination, but the villas themselves. Our agents will help you select the right villa for you. Our expert team of concierge will help you prepare for your vacation by arranging for items such as car rentals, grocery pre-stocking, and chef services; they will make sure all the details are set for your arrival. Customer satisfaction is our top priority. We aim to provide great value and service, allowing you to relax and enjoy your holiday villa.

Thursday 19 July 2012

Italy real estate, homes and villas for sale - An introduction to buying Italian property

Whether you're looking to purchase a villa in Tuscany, a farmhouse in Umbria … or you're just browsing for real estate in Italy, this is the place to start
One of Italy’s greatest assets is its unspoilt countryside. Especially for those living urban lives elsewhere, rural Italy seems a kind of earthly paradise, and it is no surprise that country homes are among the most popular property types sought by foreign buyers.

Italian countryside is genuinely special. Much of it consists of gentle rolling hillscapes with backdrops of distant mountains. The green and fertile land is enlivened by swathes of wildflowers in spring, by sun-blonded grasses in summer and by burnished leaves in autumn. Most appealingly, because Italy is not a nation in which most people live in big cities, its countryside is liberally sprinkled with charming old villages and tiny towns. These appear at pleasingly intervals on the landscape, their pretty rooftops and belltowers adding extra decoration to wide rural vistas. Inside, these friendly villages have warm communities, useful shops and entertaining festivals. Thus when you buy a home in the Italian countryside, you are not completely cut off from civilisation. You have all the space and quiet you could wish for, but also useful facilities, services and oppurtunities to enjoy the social life never too far away.

Rural Italian properties tend to be much cheaper than homes situated in a city or right on the coast. There are exceptions to this, the chief example being beautiful central Tuscany, where you’d be very lucky to find a farmhouse for less than €500,000. The similarly lovely countryside of Umbria or Le Marche usually presents rather better value for money. 
Naturally, features plenty of interesting properties in all these places. And remember, in almost all of Italy’s regions, the further inland you go, the lower the property prices. Buy somewhere within ten miles of the sea and you can make good savings AND still have easy access to the delights of the coast!

Before you begin your property search, it’s very useful to decide whether you want to buy a tumbledown old building needing restoration work, a newly-built property (you can choose one built in a traditional style if you wish), or an older home that someone else has already lovingly restored. The advantages of restoring yourself are that you can impose exactly your own taste on the fabric of the building, and, in many cases, end up with a house whose ultimate monetary value is more than what you paid for the original plus the building work. The disadvantages, of course, are the large amounts of time and organising which restoration projects can sometimes take!

Simply, if you crave a home in the Italian countryside, there are many ways to do it. Think hard about exactly what you want, then go for it!

Friday 13 July 2012

Agriturismo for sale in Umbria

Niccone Valley Umbria Agriturismo for sale. In an open and sunny position with lovely restaurant.

The restaurants at Calagrana

The restaurant at Calagrana is set in one of the two restored stone farm buildings that date back to the late 19th century. It seats an intimate 30 people.

In the restaurant, chef Alberto offers traditional Umbrian cuisine and forgotten local dishes covering the past hundred years, all recreated with a personal touch. Alberto began his chef training at the age of 14 in Milan upon completion of this he whent on to work in Paris, Germany and London. Working in some of the top restaurants in London he then decided to open his own restaurant in Battersea south London with Ely.

The restaurant offers a warm and simple setting with original features creating a wonderful environment in which to dine and spend long pleasant evenings. It has become the key meeting point for our guests, where you can come together and taste the wine and delicacies of the region, or simply mingle over an aperitif.

Outside the restaurant is the veranda offering views over the swimming pool and the spectacular valley of Niccone. It is a lovely place to spend the long summer evenings.