This post is also available in: Italian
Leaving the sea about 10 km behind you, you come into the heart of the Livorno countryside, marked by the slow pace and quiet life of the interior; the landscape here is defined by rolling hills in a sun-drenched countryside and, in spring and autumn, by a riot of colour.
Set in this enchanting nature, in a small cluster of houses forming part of an old farm built in the 18th century following the principles of the agrarian reforms of Duke Pietro Leopoldo, is the central farmhouse, the 300 sq m Villa Gaia clad in exposed stone, located on a small hill with a splendid panoramic view over the hills and woods of Livorno.
The house lies within the Cultural Park of Camaiano, an area between the hill districts of Gabbro, Castelnuovo and Nibbiaia, established for the protection of the typical Tuscan landscape.
The owners bought this house a few years ago to live in and to rent out to “friends” when not in use; they entrusted it to design experts who adapted it to the surroundings, focusing above all on the restyling of the interior to give this house a soul and its particular character.
The materials used are the result of careful research and have different origins; the interior floors are in French oak and the exterior in Umbrian terracotta, hand-crafted in the best artisan tradition, while the furniture is made of recycled pine, all of Italian origin.
The idea to create modern and functional rooms with a light touch of ethnic taste has proved very successful.
The villa has two floors.
The main door leads, on the left, into the open-plan living room with a seating area with sofas and TV and a dining area which leads outside through two French windows.
The dining area leads to the kitchen and the pantry-laundry room. In front of the main door, in the entrance hall, is a guest bathroom and, on the right, a door that leads to the study which then leads out, through a French window, to the garden.
Also in front of the main door, in the entrance hall, are the stairs that lead up to the first floor.
Here there are two suites: one with double bedroom, small living room with french sofa bed 1,40 mt. width and bathroom with shower;
the other with double bedroom with bathroom with shower and small living room in the mezzanine.
Lastly, there is another double bedroom with en-suite bathroom with shower.
In an atmosphere of total communion with nature, where the fine line of outdoors-indoors is blurred, attention is focused on the open areas where wood, iron and local stone are the principal materials that have been used naturally or slightly wrought:
for the foot path that leads from the main gate to the house, for the steps leading to the pool, for the solarium area completely covered in wood and for the various areas dedicated to relaxation and socialising, such as the covered iron pergola in front of the dining area with table and chairs for outdoor dining.
The green lawn occupies about 200 sq m of a total of 800 sq m on several levels with colourful flowers, succulent plants and aromatic herbs.
In the most panoramic area of the property, surrounded by Mediterranean scrub and bordering the “protected” wood, in a gentle, balanced setting which is a natural work of art, lies the swimming pool with wooden solarium and outdoor shower.
The rectangular pool with its secluded and very panoramic location is on a lower level with respect to the house.
It is reachable through a stone staircase and measures 9 x 3.5 m with a depth of 1.40 m. with salt depuration.
The surrounding solarium is equipped with sunbeds and umbrella, two tables, an awning and a solar-powered shower.
The pool is open from the last Saturday of April until the first Saturday of October.
There is both internal and external lighting.
Gabbro is located in the comune of Rosignano Marittimo, 6 km from the sea as the crow flies and 10 km by car from the cliffs of Chioma or Castigliocello or Quercianella.
The town lies at the foot of a typical knoll in the splendid hilly Tuscan countryside and is the ideal place for those wishing to enjoy nature away from the traffic and smog of the city.
Gabbro is located in the territory of the Cultural Park of Camaiano, a territory of great historical, cultural, artistic and scenic interest.
The park, established in 2016 by the Comitato Salvaguardia e Sviluppo di Territorio e Occupazione Onlus (CSSTO = Non-profit Committee for the Protection and Development of theTerritory and Occupation), was originally created to oppose the opening of a clay quarry in the hills;
later the aim of the “Cultural Park of Camaiano” project was to enhance the territory, the typical Tuscan landscape, so beautiful as to be defined, from a scenic point of view, by Fernand Braudel as “the most inspirational countryside that exists” and portrayed, in the 19th century by various painters, in particular the Macchiaioli painter, Silvestro Lega, whose commemorative bust can be found in the piazzetta of Gabbro. Inside the park are examples of historic buildings such as Villa Mirabella and Poggio Piano, together with a series of farmhouses of the 17th and 18th centuries, including Villa Gaia.
In the town can be found all shops for basic needs (grocer, butcher, tobacconist, etc.), pharmacy, veterinary clinic, automated teller machines (ATM), post office, bars, restaurants, pizzerias, etc., and a festive area for the many country fairs that take place during the summer.
For those wishing to spend their holidays with their own horse, in the immediate vicinity is the equestrian association “Il Mandriolo” where it can be stabled and which organises rides and trekking (NB: the centre does not lease horses).
Discover more about Villa Gaia: go on our website!