A precious jewel set in a legendary landscape - might yet be the most apt definition of La Montecchia, a wine estate which lies just south of Padua and on the borders of a National Park, within easy reach of such cultural meccas as Venice, Vicenza, Verona, Ferrara, Mantua and Rovigo.
Part castle, part villa, La Montecchia is a phenomenon encountered again and again in villas and country houses in this region: once within its walls the buzz of city life is left far behind and guests are transposed into a bucolic refuge where tranquillity reigns, the silence broken only by birdsong and the breeze rustling in the trees.
A palatial bed&breakfast suite will welcome guests in the castle itself, while the charmingly restored cottages below can be rented by the week.
The owner, Count Emo Capodilista, a trend-setter in the Veneto, has restored the individual cottages on the estate with flair and every modern comfort. Each house has a personality of its own and its own garden where you will want to wine and dine.
Your busy schedule hunting down the works of famous artists and architects needs to be punctuated by memorable meals at local trattorias, for the best of Italian cooking.