Situated on the southern slopes of the Montalbano hills, the Villa Bibbiani estate belonged to one of Florence’s most powerful families, the Frescobaldis, from 1500 to 1800. In the 18th century, the property passed to Marquis and agronomist Cosimo Ridolfi, who completed the design of the estate with stunning Romantic-style gardens. The botanical park covers 20 hectares and is considered to be one of Italy’s most magnificent. It has Italian and English-style gardens, woodland and fields, as well as features of historic and artistic importance such as the oven, the medieval ice-house and the muro del barco, the perimeter of the former Medici hunting enclosure
Restoration work began in 2017 with a view to returning the villa’s period spaces to their original glory, such as the living areas, the stables, the lemon house, the botanical garden and the theatre. The latter, situated on the first floor of the villa’s second section, is a large space with 18th century frescoes and Florentine Rococo features, which can also be found in the chapel.
Restoration work on the exterior of Villa Bibbiani involved cleaning the façade, the stonework, ornamental features and wooden doors and windows, while damaged tiles on the roof were replaced. The villa’s strong stately renaissance character was influential in the choice of materials and finishes, with handmade terracotta chosen for the floors along with warm materials like walnut and the cooler tones of onyx stone.
With a view to making the space more liveable (and not just somewhere decorative to walk through), glass panels were used to restore the loggia and the towers on the upper floor, which offer 360-degree views of the surrounding area. Finally, a swimming pool was built inside the lemon house and a photovoltaic roof will also be added to ensure the property can run on renewable energy alone.
Arch. Massimo Pierattelli
Arch. Claudio Pierattelli
Arch. Andrea Pierattelli
Ing. Gianluca Anolfo
Arch. Lorenzo Moscardi
Arch. Antonio Saporito
Arch. Ginevra Ozzola
Arch. Riccardo Melchionna
Via Bibbiani, 2, 50050 Capraia e limite FI, Italy