You can enter the house from two different streets – one above, and one below, which means that it has two addresses.
The top street is north-facing, and the bottom street is south-facing – the majority of the front of the house has panoramic views and gets full sun through much of the day.
The Arthouse is a collection of rooms that used to exist as part of a much larger palazzo, in which Domenico di Bruno – a significant religious figure – lived.
Though parts of the Arthouse are from the original fortified boundary to the citadel around the 1100s, layers and layers have been added throughout the centuries, building into a wonderful lasagna of story and history.
The many features inside the house also describe different eras, and add to the beautiful eccentricity of the building.
I’ve made significant efforts over the years to bring out the beauty and to prioritise the original (or at least, the older!) aspects of the house and exterior, removing and softening the more modern – and less symbiotic – aspects.
One example of this, is where we added a tiny walled street ‘garden’ below the front of the house: before there was a failing lemon tree (around 30 yrs old) and a pile of rubble, and the wall was all dirty and chipped paint. Over the years, I’ve planted climbing plants like grape vines which reach up to the chapel bedroom balcony, and wild Scottish honeysuckle, passionflower and jasmine which creep up through the tree. There are also many herbs and flowers that I use in the kitchen; lavender, marjoram, different chives, roses, calendula, curry plant and more.
There are lots of pianti grassi – succulents – which flower spectacularly in the hot sunshine, and it’s wonderful to sit on the front marble steps with a cuppa just taking in the fabulous ambience. Usually few people wander by, but it’s also lovely to chat occasionally with folks who do.
Scroll down from the menu to explore the rooms of the Arthouse
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