Hotel Monteverdi to Open in Italy’s Tuscan Region
A ghost village, Castiglioncello del Trinoro in Italy’s Val d’Orcia region had been lying dormant for the past few decades. The village recently underwent a transformative restoration and re-emerged as a living destination, in its own right. Situated among some of the world’s most famous wineries and adjacent to the Origo Family’s La Foce Gardens, the project is the labor of love of Michael Cioffi, an American lawyer and law professor who has dedicated himself to rebuilding the semi-abandoned, medieval village in a traditional manner that is inherently sensitive to and pays homage to the Tuscan region.
The painstaking restoration process, originally begun in 2004 with the acquisition of a single building in desperate need of attention, has revived a whole village from previous neglect, culminating this summer with the opening of the Hotel Monteverdi, a collection of three completed villas, a newly restored 12th century chapel, a farm-to-table driven informal Caffè, and a program of cultural events lasting all summer long.
Opening in August, the seven-bedroom Hotel Monteverdi features spectacular vistas of the valley below, an adjoining outdoor swimming pool and more. Regional artisans used crafts to restore the village that are themselves on the brink of extinction. Local stone masons and builders breathed new life into Monteverdi. The use of indigenous materials and reclaimed wood were central to the reconstruction of this former pensione. Local woods, Tuscan flagstone, granite and Carrara marble give each room a distinct appearance that is authentically grounded in the spirit and humble origins of the Val d'Orcia.
The Caffè Monteverdi has quickly become the village’s informal gathering spot, an anchor where guests -- whether hotel, villa or local residents -- can mingle with performers and visitors can enjoy al fresco concert performances and witness the beauty of the Tuscan countryside with uninterrupted views of Mount Cetona. Under the direction of Paolo Coluccio, a Locanda Locatelli-trained Italian chef, the Caffè Monteverdi offers a seasonally driven menu changing daily. A selection of prosciutto, salami, and other cuts from the immediate region is complemented by myriad varieties of pecorino cheeses. Guests can savor the richness of crostini combined with freshly picked off-the-vine tomatoes or chargrilled aubergines from the Caffè’s own vegetable patch.
The Villas at Monteverdi, a collection of three villas available for rent on a weekly basis, bring together the comforts and facilities of the 21st century while still paying homage to the buildings’ historical blueprint. Each villa is equipped with a modern kitchen where a private chef can prepare (and impart upon) guests the simplicity of Tuscan cuisine and its complexity of flavors. Ranging from the large six-bedroom Villa Muri Antichi -- perfect for a multigenerational family retreat and affording each guest the utmost privacy -- to the more intimate two-bedroom Villa San Pietro, the Villas at Monteverdi offer an ideal option for lengthier stays and excursion-based travels. The facilities of the Hotel Monteverdi will be available for all villa guests year-round.