The farmhouse was built some 200 years ago adjacent to the site of a shrine to San Cerbone which dates back to the 12th century, and which was visited by Saint Francis of Assisi on the pilgrimage to Rome. The house has been fully restored over the last 5 years but retains many original features including age polished pianelli floors, a working stone fireplace, chestnut beamed ceilings, double aspected rooms with high ceilings and long views, extensive terraces to catch the sun all day long, a working walk-in bread and pizza oven, garage and a range of outbuildings including a small deconsecrated private church with altar, pews and seating for 12 people.
The house is on two floors with 3 double and 2 twin bedded rooms on the upper floor. The house sits on a hillside and thus has ground level access to both floors but has been linked by an internal stonebuilt staircase. The main entrance is via a porch on the upper floor and this opens into a large double aspected comfortable living room with a huge sofa, armchairs, working stone surround fireplace dated 1851, satellite TV and video. The views from this room are towards the medieval city of Anghiari and over the plain of Sansepolcro. The bedrooms are all spacious and comfortable. The largest bedroom is double aspect with long views and has a beamed ceiling, king-size sleigh bed and ensuite bathroom with bath.
There are 2 more large double bedrooms one with a traditional Italian queen-size wrought iron bed and antique furniture and the other with also a queen size bed with ensuite bathroom with shower. Two further twin bedded rooms overlook the church and share the family bathroom with fabulous views as you laze in the bath.
The ground floor, formerly the cantina, is accessed by double French doors from a wide pergola covered terrace which runs across the front of the house.
The well-equipped kitchen is a large and airy room with a wonderful chestnut beamed ceiling. It is designed with an island workstation sink unit in the middle with dishwasher and a built-in range of chestnut cupboards, fridge/freezer, gas hob and electric cooker, with stonebuilt cooker surround and granite working surfaces. The walls boast antique dresser shelving units and the whole is a very pleasing working environment which cooks will find easy to use. This room opens onto a large sitting room with library bookcase and a cosy TV room off with large working fireplace.
The bright and airy dining room seats 10 guests and is beautifully furnished with a large antique oval shaped dining table with a door onto the terrace.
The dining terrace which runs the length of the house is partially shaded by a clematis and vine covered pergola. The long reclaimed wooden dining table seats 8 to 10 with quality teak seating.
To the side (and facing down the valley) is a large and sunny terrace stretching the full width of the house and including a pergola ideal for al fresco dining.
To the rear of the house is a large barn/housekeepers lodge sometimes used by the owner but accessed independently by a separate road and screened by cypress and olive trees. There is also a small private (deconsecrated) church with naive mural painted walls.
The house is surrounded by well maintained lawns providing a lovely area for children to play or simply to sit and read or soak up the panoramic views. Below the house is a newly built infinity pool with fabulous views. It provides a very sheltered sun spot and is completely safe for children as the garden has been toddler proofed so children cannot wander from the extensive lawn area into the pool area.
In the area
4 kms away is the small but sophisticated walled town of Sansepolcro (home to Piero della Francesca’s famous work ‘The Resurrection’) which attracts visitors from all over the world. It has supermarkets and a full range of shops, banks, cafes and a post office, plus a lively market twice weekly and a wide selection of restaurants including 4 which appear in the Michelin guide. Sansepolcro has year-round events and festivals including the traditional crossbow contest the Palio della Balestra with rival town Gubbio.
Florence, Siena, San Gimignano and Bologna are about 2 hours drive. All approximately an hour away are Lake Trasimeno (boat trips, wind surfing, child-friendly beach), Perugia, Assisi, Cortona and Gubbio. Arezzo (the location for the town shots in the oscar-winning film La Vita e Bella) is about 45 minutes away, Citta di Castello about 30 minutes and Anghiari 15-20 minutes. Also local are a variety of small hilltop towns include Caprese Michelangelo (allegedly the birthplace of the artist), Monterchi, Monte Santa Maria Tiberina and more.
Horse riding is available on the outskirts of the town, there is a bowling alley about 10 kms out of town and for the golfer a choice of a 9 or 18 hole course at Antognolla (handicap card required) in a lovely setting about 40 minutes drive away.
Calcina is well served by a variety of airports with direct flights from the UK, all within driving range:
Forli/Bologna – L Rudolphi airport, just over an hour away offers value for money flights via Ryanair.
Ancona – 1 hour 45 minutes (Ryanair)
Bologna – 2 hours (BA, GO)
Pisa – 2 hours (BA)
Florence – 2 hours (Alitalia, Meridiana)
Rome, Fiumicino airport – about 4 hours (BA, Alitalia, Meridiana)
Rome, Ciampino airport – about 4 hours (Go, Ryanair)
Milan (Linate or Malpensa) – about 4 hours (BA, GO, Alitalia, Buzz, Meridiana)
Milan/Bergamo – Orio al Serio airport (Ryanair), about 4 hours
Perugia Airport – is the closest to the villa 35 miles away and served by Ryanair.
Access by car is by autostrada and superstrada. The last 3km are on typical country roads (strada bianca). From town to house is a 15 minute car ride.