The emotion of living history.
The salons, the bedrooms and even the cellars of Villa Campestri Olive Oil Resort, as well as the capable restoration work carried out by the owner, Paolo Pasquali, testify to the atmosphere of 800 years of history. The first records of the villa date from the 13th century. At that time the nucleus of the Villa was a small defensive fortress protected by watchtowers, the remains of which can still be seen today. This was built over a spring, and in fact a fine example of an artesian well, which once provided the water for household use, can still be admired today in the “Sala del Pozzo” (Well Room) of the Villa.
In the late 14th century, Michele d’Antonio di Rota commissioned the fresco in the shrine near the entrance from the Florentine painter Lorenzo di Bicci (probably of the school of Spinello Aretino). Today the outline of the fresco is still visible in the shrine, while the original fresco is on display at the Beato Angelico museum in Vicchio. At about the same time the little chapel inside the villa was built, and Lorenzo di Bicci was given the task of creating another fresco in the shrine inside it. This chapel is still consecrated and the fresco can be seen in all its splendour.
The 1430 land register records the enlargement of the building from fortress to manor house. A second important architectural intervention, which gave the building its present appearance as a renaissance villa, took place in the late 17th century. Around the turn of the 20th century, Giuseppe Roti Michelozzi had the villa’s present facade made. The decorative frieze at the top seems to be based on a design by the celebrated Florentine renaissance artist Michelozzo Michelozzi.
In the early 20th century, decorative ceramics made by Galileo Chini in Borgo San Lorenzo became fashionable on glass. Valuable examples adorn the windows in the restaurant, the Villa’s chapel, and some of the guest rooms.
The noble Florentine Roti Michelozzi family held ownership of the villa and the surrounding lands for nearly 700 years until 1989, when they sold the entire Campestri property to the present owner, Paolo Pasquali. The restoration work undertaken by its new owner has kept its charm intact.