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    At Home in Tuscany

    From an antiques-filled noble estate to an apartment in a Florentine palazzo, our houses here connect you to the region’s almost inconceivable abundance of art and ancient architecture, Renaissance piazzas and wineries—and a wild coastline ranged by Tuscan cowboys

    Between the exuberant vini rossi, the unsurpassable art, the hill towns that look like oil paintings and the wild coastal plains, Tuscany is a staggeringly well-preserved living history. Florence maintains a noble air with its artistic treasures, the Uffizi, the Duomo, the Piazza della Signoria, while each summer Siena carries on centuries of tradition with its Palio horse race in its main square. There’s Pisa with its leaning tower and San Gimignano with its lofty ones. Lucca within walls and Pienza, the ideal Renaissance town laid out in perfect symmetry.

    Inside Galleria dell'Accademia, the free-standing Campanile di Giotto, and the whitewashed buildings of Florence. Photos by Engjell Gjepali & Patrick Schneider. Photos by Alex Ghizila, Elisa Cano & Egor Myznik.

    But Tuscany is also Carrara and the spiry Apuan Alps, whose quarries provided the marble for Michelangelo’s statues. Viareggio with its sandy beaches and Art Nouveau hotels. The Casentino’s forests and monasteries, where St. Francis of Assisi once preached. Livorno with its canals and cacciucco, its distinctive fish soup. Bolgheri with its cypress-lined avenues and Super Tuscan wines, Tignanello, Sassicaia and Ornellaia. The Maremma and its National Park, where the butteri, Tuscan cowboys, wrangle their herds in a wild, lonely landscape. Monte Argentario with its rocky coves and Mediterranean maquis. The Archipelago of Elba, Giglio, Montecristo; Sarteano with its Etruscan tombs and Saturnia with its sulfur springs. There’s more, of course. Suffice it to say, Florence was the capital of all of Italy from 1865 to 1870, and Tuscany to this day feels like a nation within a nation.

    The Tuscan countrsyide, the city of Siena, and an apartment building just steps away from Piazza della Signoria in Florence. Photos by Engjell Gjepali & Patrick Schneider.

    You may not be able to see all of Tuscany in one try, but you start by basing yourself out of one of these well-located Tuscan homes—available only to PRIOR members.

    Whether you’re staying in a city center, on the coast, or in the countryside, we can arrange horseback riding excursions around Sarteano, stopping at a cheese farm specializing in Pecorino, or organize a dinner at Castello di Argiano in Montalcino with the winemaker owners, one an architect and the other an astronomer.

    Old-World Retreat

    Near the medieval hilltop village of Colle di Val d’Elsa, this villa is an easy drive from some of Tuscany’s most notable cities and towns, including Siena (25 minutes), Florence (50 minutes), and Pisa and Lucca (1.5 hours). The aristocratic owners of this 13-bedroom estate renovated the property last year while ensuring their family retreat still exudes its old-world charm (brocaded wallpaper; marble busts; gilt mirrors and antique wood furnishings passed down through generations).

    The 13-bedroom estate sits near the medieval hilltop village of Colle di Val d’Elsa.

    The bedrooms, each with its own distinct personality, are filled with painted or wood-beam ceilings, wrought-iron bed frames, centuries-old antique maps or oil paintings. In the game room, with its red-felt billiards table, antique taxidermy boars and other fauna from the region sit under an arched stone ceiling.

    The villa's rooms are filled with painted and wood-beam ceilings and centuries-old antique maps and oil paintings.

    Florentine Family Villa

    One of the best parts about this Renaissance-era villa on a hill just 15 minutes outside of Florence and down the road from where Machiavelli penned The Prince in the 16th century is the unobstructed view it gives of Brunelleschi’s famous dome and Giotto’s campanile. A generations-old countryside escape for an aristocratic Florentine family, the eight-bedroom villa feels thoroughly Tuscan, thanks to the terracotta-tiled interiors and arched doorways.

    The eight-bedroom villa is located just 15 minutes outside of Florence.

    Winding staircases with wrought-iron balustrades lead to bedrooms with four-poster beds dressed in bright blues, mint greens, and burnt reds and decorated with antique lithographs and antique wooden desks. On the sprawling grounds, where on a clear day you can see all the way to the Tyrrhenian Sea, there’s a tree-shaded swimming pool and bocce court surrounded by olive groves and vineyards and a dining gazebo flanked by a vegetable garden.

    The generations-old home was a countryside escape for an aristocratic Florentine family.

    Seaside Getaway

    This mid-18th-century villa sits on the sea between Talamone Bay and the Giannella coast, just a short drive from Montalcino, Saturnia and Porto Ercole, home to the famed Hotel Pellicano. The interiors incorporate classic Tuscan materials, while channeling a more relaxed and airy mood than you’ll find in the region’s interior: white furnishings and four-poster beds in the 11 bedrooms sit on terracotta floors, gauze curtains shade floor-to-ceiling windows, and sun-dappled daybeds face the Tuscan Archipelago.

    The eleven-bedroom property incorporates classic Tuscan materials, with white furnishings and four-poster beds sitting on terracotta floors.

    Breakfast happens in a small courtyard shaded by an orange tree; just before dusk, you can wait for the sun to set on Talamone port with a glass of wine, either by the pool or on the property’s private rocky beach.

    The mid-18th-century villa is situated on the Talamone Bay and the Giannella coast, just a short drive from Montalcino, Saturnia and Porto Ercole.

    Modern-Rustic Farmhouse

    Private aristocratic estates in Tuscany can feel fabulously palatial, but those seeking more low-key living will feel at ease in this cozy, six-bedroom retreat dating to the 18th century in Sarteano, a medieval town 1.5 hours from Florence and two hours from Rome.

    The six-bedroom retreat dates to the 18th century in Sarteano, a medieval town 1.5 hours from Florence and two hours from Rome.

    The former sharecropper’s farmhouse with its rough-hewn stone walls, exposed wood-beam ceilings and terracotta-tiled floors has two large sitting rooms with log-burning fireplaces and six bedrooms with wrought iron beds and wooden shutters that let in large amounts of Tuscany’s honeyed light. Each night, the villa’s chef will prepare dinner with the help of an onsite vegetable garden, though the invitingly large kitchen might inspire guests to jump in and cook themselves.

    The former sharecropper’s farmhouse boasts rough-hewn stone walls, exposed wood-beam ceilings and terracotta-tiled floors.

    A Designer’s Apartment

    This five-bedroom apartment, set within the terraced fourth floor of a private, family-owned palazzo, couldn’t be better situated: it’s just a couple of minutes by foot from the Piazza della Signoria and the Ponte Vecchio, while the Duomo is just 1,600 feet away.

    The five-bedroom apartment is set within the terraced fourth floor of a private, family-owned palazzo.

    Designed by owner and Rome-based interior designer Ilaria Miani, the apartment is reached via a 17th-century colonnaded entry hall by vaulted staircase or elevator. In the large light-filled living room with a grand fireplace, a contemporary painting hangs on rough-hewn stone walls. Miani designed each bedroom with its own personality: in one, dramatic black and white textiles dominate, while in another, red-themed art gives off a playful bohemian vibe.

    The light-filled apartment is designed by owner and Rome-based interior designer Ilaria Miani.

    PRIOR’s Bespoke team can design a trip for your group based at any one of these houses, safely helping you explore the surroundings when you are ready to travel again. Inquire at membership@prior.club.

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