The hill of olives
It's not easy to find words to describe a place whose beauty is of another time… We could say…
that Rigomagno is a little Tuscan village of rare beauty, nestled amongst olive trees in an enchanted landscape situated on the summit of a 400 m limestone and sandstone hill…… that it's surrounded by ancient walls said to be of Roman origin….
That its origins are lost in the mists of time and that its historical significance is well documented in writings that describe Rigomagno as a defensive stronghold on the frontiers of the Republic of Siena during the epic clashes between the Florentines and Sienese….
But in reality, there are no words to adequately capture the beauty of this little gem, with its splendid panoramic position and its unspoiled, medieval Tuscan village structure, set apart from the usual tourist circuit and the chaos of modern life.
Rigomagno is a small village where everything is cared for with attention, where even today one can have an authentic Tuscan experience in the colours of its streets, in the rush of water in the old village washing troughs , in the taste of its oil, which is of such renown that Rigomagno is also known as the "Hill of Olives", or of its "ciambellino", a traditional sweet that's celebrated in the "Village Festival of the Ciambellino" and that is strictly homemade by the village women, who pass the recipe on from generation to generation.
What is certain is that even the least perceptive visitor cannot fail to notice that everything in this village is in harmony and that silence is still a value to be respected: one doesn't come here to bellow but to listen to the wise counsel of the village residents, the sound of the wind in the trees, the chirping of the birds…………….. and other, more ancient sounds, virtually lost today……….such as the tolling of village bells that still signal the passing of time.
In this small village, completely rebuilt by the Republic of Siena in 1284, there's a little house called "La Paterna di Rigomagno", which has become a residence of refined yet informal charm. The house is located on a rocky outcrop and has three levels.
The walls of the ground floor are all of sandstone and the floors are paved with antique, Rapolano travertine, discovered in the stalls during renovations and deliberately left exposed as a testament to the artisans of a bygone era. The ceilings have exposed, fired bricks with beams of chestnut and oak that are original to the building. The walls of the second and third floors are plastered in Siena-yellow, biological lime. In some places the original, irregular bricks and stones of the old house have been left exposed. During reconstruction, the original fired bricks and beams of chestnut and oak were recovered and reused in the ceilings. And everything harmonizes with the warmth of natural, waxed oak floors that are brushed in the Tuscan tradition. The house is furnished with an harmonious collection of handmade, Tuscan folk-art pieces.
The small fireplace on the second floor is an authentic work of art in terracotta and sandstone.
All the doors and windows are of natural oak and are handmade by one of the best Tuscan artisans. The entrance door is the original door of the old house. Even though it's located in the village, La Paterna di Rigomagno faces the splendid panorama of the Tuscan countryside, and through its windows the sun illuminates the sitting room in the most natural way.