Immerse yourself in a quintessential Tuscan experience at this splendid 17th century home where you will be welcomed with open arms by the passionate owners who have restored this villa with Italian charm and grace.
Santa Gemma dates back to the 1600s when a noble family bought the villa as their summer residence, then in the 19th century it was gifted to monks who altered the rooms and attached a school and church to the house. Its current owners have spent many years overseeing the careful renovation of this grand villa, bringing it back to its former beauty, even hiring an artist from Florence to restore the 18th century frescoes which can be found in some of the wonderful rooms.
Of course, no expense has been spared to introduce 21st century luxuries such as complimentary Wi-Fi, mini-bars and robes in the bedrooms and beautiful bathrooms, many with contemporary rain showers. Overall there are eleven air-conditioned bedrooms upstairs, most en suite, including five duplex suites with their own living area, sumptuous bedroom and two bathrooms! A lift for luggage, an equipped study and an outdoor fitness area are just some of the other added features that are sure to impress.
Relax in the elegant living room, create feasts in the perfectly equipped kitchen and serve under the fresco-painted ceiling of the grand dining room. Much of the ground floor also opens up to the 19th century formal gardens. Views of olive groves, vineyards and the distant mountains are breathtaking or you may just find yourself distracted by the aromas of citrus and herbs as you explore the paths leading to ornate lawns, fruit trees and pretty places to sit in solitude. The setting of the swimming pool is simply sublime with jasmine and roses trailing over the traditional stone walls.
It’s also a picture-perfect wedding venue, not just because of the glorious gardens ideal for a summer ceremony and marquee or the limonaia which can be transformed into a magical dining room. A reception can alternatively be hosted in the grand surroundings of the villa itself and the adjoining chapel adds to the romantic ambience of this special venue.
Set within walking distance to a handful of shops and restaurants, the location is superb with the enchanting town of Lucca just 11km away, Pisa and Florence also within striking distance as well as a wealth of medieval villages close by. Visit magical Collodi (the home of Pinocchio’s author) or the birthplace of Leonardo da Vinci, followed by sunny beach days at Viareggio or even as far as the Ligurian coast.
Whether a family holiday or a once in a lifetime event, Santa Gemma offers Italian beauty, character and historic charm and allows you to explore this captivating part of northern Tuscany and beyond.
For 2022 there are plans to renovate a two-storey annexe with five bedrooms and other features. This would allow the estate to sleep up to 32 guests. Please enquire for further details and additional pricing for the annexe or watch this space for further updates.
Just 11km north-east of Lucca and around an hours drive from Florence, Santa Gemma enjoys a fantastic location for exploring this enchanting part of northern Tuscany and beyond.
Set in formal gardens with views of olive groves, vineyards and distant mountains, you are within walking distance to a residential area/village with local restaurants and shops, including a supermarket. Also a short walk away is a fascinating late Renaissance stately home and stunning gardens where tours can be arranged.
Lucca (11km) is a beautiful town, within easy reach of Santa Gemma and once you visit you’ll yearn to return. The city walls are amazing to explore, walking or cycling along the paths, stopping off for shady picnics or playgrounds before heading into the heart of the historic centre to discover authentic restaurants, inviting gelaterias, lovely shops alongside enchanting squares and exquisite architecture.
A little further south, Pisa (30km) is also a brilliant city to explore, not just because of the Leaning Tower but also the charming and vibrant atmosphere by the riverside. Of course, the historic and artistic treasures of Florence (77km) are also within striking distance, the perfect day for sight-seeing or simply soaking up the ambience in the bars and trattorie of this glorious city.
A little closer to home, organise a treatment in the spa-town of Montecatini Terme (20km), also home to some superb boutiques or visit the birthplace of the great artist, Leonardo da Vinci, in the delightful village of Vinci (40km). The pretty village of Collodi (10km) is also worthy of a visit, especially for families who will adore the magical theme park, Pinocchio Park.
Those who prefer outdoor activities have horse-riding within a short drive, plenty of cycling opportunities as well as wonderful walking. Lovers of wildlife should visit the incredible Tuscan wetlands, Padule di Fucecchio, around 30km south or head north towards the spectacular Apuan Alps, around an hour away, for breathtaking hiking trails.
Not forgetting watersports along the Versilia coast with the sandy beaches of Viareggio (42km) and Forte dei Marmi (50km) within an hour. For even more spectacular scenery, drive as far as the enchanting Golfo dei Poeti, including Porto Venere (105km) and La Spezia (90km), the latter being the gateway to the Cinque Terre National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage site and visited by travellers from all over the world.
At Excellence Luxury Villaswe pride ourselves on going that little bit further for our guests. From private chefs to babysitters we can help you arrange those little extras that make it a truly memorable holiday. Simply fill in the
concierge request form or contact Excellence Luxury Villas Concierge Team who will be happy to help. We can typically help you arrange any of the following:
- Maid service/extra cleaning
- Private chef/cook/catering
- Welcome hamper/pre-stocked fridge
- Local day-trips or tours
- Airport pick-up/drop-off
- Babysitting / childcare services
Extras included at this property:
- Welcome dinner (for stays of 7 nights or more)
- Stocked mini-bars in every bedroom (charges apply for re-filling)
- Maid service (4 hours per day, six days per week)
Extras available at this property (payable locally):
- Extra maid service
- Cooking classes
- Luggage porter on arrival/departure
- Car service with driver
- Wine-tastings and tours
- Fridge-stocking and pre-arrival shopping
- Catering for special events
- Church rental
Please note that all extras are subject to availability and must be requested in advance of the holiday (prices on request). Due to some rural/remote locations, not all services will be available at all properties. However, we will always do our best to fulfil your requests!