Turn back the clock to a time of watchtowers and fishing villages, all combined with fine wines and Turkish bathhouses
Beach | Food & wine | Honeymoon | Off the beaten track
Set alone, atop a hill in central Puglia, Italy, the masseria appears for all the world as a crown with its octagonal walls and eight building towers arranged around a courtyard. It belongs to a line of defence that follows the peninsular coast, known as the finibus terrae. Today, the region is better known for its excellent wines and orchards although medieval castles, historic centres and Romanic cathedrals all hold their time-tested allure. Alberobello with its 16th century conical houses is a particular delight along with the crypts and rock churches at Monopoli. And, from the nearby Savelletri fishing village, fishermen and monks still make the pilgrimage to the masseria’s chapel.
Surrounded by olive groves and often looking out to the sea, the vaulted ceilings are light and airy with charmingly rough, whitewashed walls. However, there’s nothing coarse about the fine linen or designer furniture. Deluxe Rooms add bathtubs and a lounge area – along with a terrace complete with deckchairs – to already comfortable seating and writing desks. Junior Suites throw in a Jacuzzi and a fireplace while named suites come with separate lounge areas and, in the case of the Torre Maizza Suite & Palm Suite, a private swimming pool. Daily newspapers and WiFi throughout are a nice touch.
The hotel’s four restaurants share a passion for regional, Puglia cuisine. The Restaurant Le Palm offers creative dishes that showcase fresh fish from Savelletri, burrata cheese from local farms and seasonal vegetables from the estate while the poolside Le Colonne serves light, Italian fare poolside. Head a little further to the 17th century terraces of Egnathia at Masseria Maizza’s sister, Masseria Coccaro, for seasonal specialities or relax on the beach with the Cabana Restaurant’s fresh fish and sushi. Throughout, sommelier-paired wines delight as cooking classes complete with visits to local markets and fishing villages mean you can take the taste home.
As a historic, self-contained entity, guests are treated to a wide range of activities and facilities onsite. Whether it’s the golf course, gym and outdoor pool or the billiard room, table tennis table or children’s playground, there’s no excuse for taking things slow. However, if you’d rather relax, you’ll find a solarium, an excellent outdoor pool, a library and a hammam – a Turkish bathhouse. Then there’s the spa with its comprehensive range of massages, treatments and beauty therapies as expert yoga, pilates and tai chi instructors lead groups among the olive groves or down on the beach. If that’s not enough, you’ll also find bicycle, jogging and horse riding tracks while the cigar lounge and wine tasting sites you firmly in Italy.
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