CHARMING VILLA WITH PRIVATE POOL
Indlu ekumhlaba osikelwe izindlu yonke sinombuki zindwendwe onguIlaria
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- Isazisi siqinisekisiwe
Goodmornig my names is Ilaria and this is the story of my family: Vigliano (also known as Villa Pepi) has always belonged to the aristocratic Pepi family. In 1580 the family bought the land on which the villa stands, together with the nearby 11th century tower “Torre di Pian dell'Isola”. The villa was commissioned soon after, in what was at the time considered a very modern architectural style. A wealthy merchant travelling from Cyprus arrived in Florence laden with the very precious commodity of pepper (pepe) and there began the fortune of the Pepi family, one of the most ancient families in Florence today, dating back to the 11th century. Via dei Pepi, next to Piazza Santa Croce, in the heart of Florence, was originally owned entirely by the family who still reside in "Palazzo Pepi". Many family members have upheld prestigious positions in Florentine society over the years. In Vigliano the Pepi family enjoyed their holidays and hunting parties and produced wine, oil, honey, wheat , hemp, vinsanto (sacred wine), vinegar, etc. for centuries thereafter. Several ancillary buildings were erected around the house over the centuries: the Canteen, the Olive Press, the Granary, the Carpentry, etc. The farm was very productive and harvests involved much of the local community of Rignano Sull'Arno. The family have always been very involved with and supportive of the local village. During the twenties Umberto Pepi was mayor of Rignano and you will find many pictures of him in Vigliano. During the second world war the villa played an important role in providing shelter for many local families whose homes had been devastated by the bombing of the valuable cement mine and railway connections. With the recent restoration (2008-2009) some interesting discoveries were made. In the north part of the Villa traces were found of a major fire which we believe occurred around the end of the 18th century. This probably led to the removal of all the various fireplaces in the villa - today only the one in the kitchen remains. Originally all the rooms, including the staff rooms, were beautifully decorated with frescos. Now, only the "tromp l'oeil" views of the surrounding Valdarno hills in the sitting-room remains. Adjacent to the villa is a small private chapel built in 1756. It is dedicated to Sant' Anna and is still occasionally used by the family for ceremonies and religious functions. In the grounds of the villa, between the fruit garden and the vegetable garden, an old 19th century water tank, fed by a natural private spring, was fitted with a modern filter system and now used as a swimming pool. The Pepi family were the very first in the area to install an electricity system which has been restored retaining the original 19th century white porcelain switches with external silk wires. Much of the furniture has been in the possession of the Pepi family for generations. The floors have been crafted from coloured cement tiles, dating from the early 20th century and have been restored by hand with beeswax to preserve the original colours. In restoring Villa Pepi our priority has been to retain the atmosphere, history and charm of the property.
Goodmornig my names is Ilaria and this is the story of my family: Vigliano (also known as Villa Pepi) has always belonged to the aristocratic Pepi family. In 1580 the family bought…
- Iilwimi: English, Italiano
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