The modest beauty of this hamlet of ancient farm buildings has been brilliantly brought to light by your host’s vision and eco-commitment. He specialises in restoration with local work and materials – zero building miles – and teaches innovative environmental design. The hamlet stands in a manicured garden where delicate stone walkways hop over running water to the cottages. It has the mellow, quiet and private mood of a Monet painting. Inside, the results of Marco’s painstaking artistry are miraculous wall and floor finishes, industrial fixtures recycled into artistic furniture using natural fabrics, original whimsical frescoes, muted colours… The larger casino has a beautiful living room with a cartoon of the Battle of Anghiari (‘the lost Leonardo’), an ultra-modern kitchen and a huge soaking tub in the master bathroom. The smaller cottage is cosy with a humbler kitchen and its own fine finishes and tub. Outside, birdsong and falling water music fill the space, it’s hard do believe Rome is only an hour away. Charming Marco and Senne run a dream place for designers, art historians and all lovers of things Italian.