Castello di Segalari
About the Castle
Castello di Segalari is in one of the most beautiful parts of the rolling Tuscan countryside and enjoys breathtaking views of the Tirreno Sea. It provides an unsurpassed Tuscan experience for families and other small groups of up to 18. Painstakingly restored from the 11th century, it is within an hour by car of the diverse pleasures of Tuscany – historic villages, museums and churches with their priceless art, fabulous shopping, numerous fine restaurants and some of Italy’s most respected wineries – not to speak of the owner’s own first-class beach within 15 minutes drive. The house is fully staffed.
Segalari is a two-hour drive from Rome airport and 45 minutes from the Pisa airport. Several important historic towns such as San Gimignano and Volterra are within 30 minutes.
There are six air-conditioned bedroom suites, including the master bedroom with his and her bathrooms and a private tented terrace; four others are in the main house and the last is in the romantic, four-story 10th-century tower. In addition, there are four other double bedrooms that are perfect for children; each has an en-suite bathroom. In all ten bedrooms, sheets are of the finest hand-embroidered linen and bathrooms are spacious and use lovely local marbles; all are air-conditioned.
A grand entrance displays the Della Gherardesca coat of arms, carefully restored medieval stonework and a seemingly floating stone staircase. Continuing into the house, the main drawing room has massive-timbered beams and wonderful views of the countryside, the sea and the nearby island of Elba. Also on the main floor are a sitting room, a library with cable TV and a collection of fine literature and art books, and a study with computer/internet connection.
Downstairs the dining room seats up to 18 at a grand round table, and there is a separate breakfast room, kitchen, playroom with cable TV and large collection of DVD’s, and a teenagers’ room with pool table. The décor uses an imaginative combination of valuable antiques and contemporary pieces.
Outside, along the picturesque west side of the house with the long views of countryside and sea, are the terraces. This is where most of the dining and entertaining in the summer takes place. Just adjacent is the castle’s own medieval church, a 65-foot marble-lined swimming pool with tented lounging area, a tennis court and yoga pavilion.
Local Activities and Excursions
Apart from relaxing around the pool or on the secluded beach, excursions and activities are endless. Tuscany is rich in history; it may have the highest concentration of art in the world! The town of Pisa with its leaning tower, Volterra with its six ancient arched entrances, and charming San Gimignano with its many medieval towers are within one hour’s drive through rolling hills of olive and wine orchards. Walled medieval villages, off-the beaten track for most tourists, include Bolgheri, Castagneto, and Massa Marittima. Etruscan and Roman sites are also close by, as are great museums and churches.
An accomplished art historian can be hired to arrange private visits to important private houses and gardens, and to arrange views of private art collections not normally open to the public. Shopping, which can be guided if desired, includes ceramics, jewelry and the best of hand-made terra cotta urns and planters, as well as fabulous Italian country clothes and leather.
Restaurants, all sampled by the owner’s family, include one that holds two Michelin stars and others that are among Italy’s best trattorias. Tours of local wineries including the prized Sassicaia winery can be arranged in advance or after arrival, as can tours of the finest olive farms. It is also possible to hire a day boat for the short trip to the beautiful islands of Elba or Capraia.
The house staff includes the owner’s own cook of twenty years, who is available to prepare guests’ meals in authentic, Italian home-style. Local markets provide the freshest fish from the Tirreno Sea, and local farms provide organically-grown fruit and vegetables.
During the summer dining is often outdoors, barbecue-style; hundreds of candles light the terraces and a wood-burning pizza oven yields the finest Italian pizza and bread. Daytime meals can also be taken under the tent at poolside, or with a picnic at the seaside hut. Undoubtedly guests will want to sample the excellent choice of restaurants in the area.
Rates for parties of up to eighteen are available upon request. Meals and beverages, including wonderful local wines, are extra and are billed to the guest at cost, upon departure. A driver is available for local tours, but most guests will want to rent cars for maximum flexibility.
To make a reservation, call Sanctuare at (800) 225-4255 from the U.S. and Canada. From elsewhere, call (802) 457-5280. Or e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org