Synopses & Reviews
There's no downside, I say firmly. "The waterfall of problems...the financial worriers, the language barriers, the hot water in the toilet, the layers of gunk on the beams - there is nothing compared to the absolute joy..." (Frances Mayes on restoring a villa, in Under the Tuscan Sun)
A PASSION FOR ALL THINGS ITALIAN Can lead you down the most unexpected paths. Like finding yourself a home owner in Italy, for example - though "home" may be a misnomer for many of the original structures that pass for habitable dwellings; rubble, cave, farmhouse in tragic ruin would be more apt descriptions. But for the twenty-two home owners profiled in Restoring a Home in Italy, courage, commitment, patience, and an ability to imagine the future allowed them to transform these pieces of the past into magical places to live today.
In evocative text and lush photographs, author Elizabeth Minchilli and photographer Simon McBride let us in on the beauty and charm of these homes throughout the country: hillside houses in Puglia, farmhouses in Tuscany and Umbria, attics in Venice, apartments in Rome, even former convents and caves. And though this is about Italy, where it is said there are no rules except what guides your heart, there are some obstacles along the way. Undertaking and expensive project in a foreign language, with a foreign bureaucracy and mountains of regulations - not to mention an alien sense of time - requires solid information an down-to-earth advice, all of which are here as well, as owners and designers explore the nuts and bolts of turning that crumbling set of walls into a warm, inviting home. A list of sources and terms will complete any would-be home owner's education.
So if you're seriously contemplating renovating your dream home in Italy, or are content just dreaming of it, Restoring a Home in Italy is the perfect guide.
This breathtakingly photographed volume offers an inside, and outside, look at twenty-two lovingly restored homes, labors of love by people whose passion for Italy just couldn't be ignored. Owners and designers share anecdotes about their experiences with local artisans, vendors, and bureaucracy, while offering real-world advice on the tactics of restoring a house in a foreign country.
Whether the plan is to embark on a complete redesign, begin a restoration, or just move in and let the house evolve on its own, home owners and dreamers alike will value the information and thrill to the dream of Restoring a Home in Italy. This is a book at once lush and beautiful, and invaluably practical.
Owning and restoring a home abroad is one of life's most enduring daydreams. Here are twenty-two real-life "restoration dramas" with very happy endings.
About the Author
Elizabeth Helman Minchilli is the author of Artisan's Restoring a Home in Italy
(now in its third printing), and the recently published Italian Rustic
. Her passion for Italy led her from her native United States, where she studied architectural history, to Italy in 1987. She writes on architecture, design, and food for a variety of publications and is the author of four other books on Italian culture.
Simon McBride has been photographing gardens and interiors for over two decades, working regularly for Architectural Digest, Country Living, and House and Garden, among other magazines. His numerous book credits include Ski Style and Private Tuscany. He lives in Bath, England.
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