Poets’ Villas in Tuscany and jet set: welcome to Versilia!
Poets, celebrities and sportsmen can be found in Versilia, a region famous for some of the most luxurious villas in Tuscany and a lively nightlife.
Among the wonderful locations in Tuscany, one is particularly famous for its fashionable life: Versilia. This part of the region is located in the north-western part of the Lucca province and is named after the Versilia river that runs through it.
The area stretches from the Apuan Alps to the white beaches of the Tyrrhenian sea, therefore it meets the interests of different kind of tourists. Its main city is Pietrasanta, that has a coastal part called Marina di Pietrasanta, where many people love to go during the summer holidays. The city is particularly famous in Italy because it was the summer retreat of the renown XX century poet Gabriele D’Annunzio, the Italian dandy. He often stayed in a villa, called La Versiliana, located in the pine forest in Pietrasanta nearby. Here he composed one of his most famous poems La pioggia nel pineto, one of the best examples of Italian Decadent movement. Whether you want to be inspired or you just want to enjoy a stroll, the pineta is the perfect place to enjoy a cool climate during the hot Tuscan summer. However, there are others locations of Versilia well known not only across the Peninsula, but also abroad.
The marble caves of the Apuan Alps are one of them. Carrara marbles are the most famous, since they are the ones used by Michelangelo for his stunning sculptures. However, the history of these caves dates back to II B.C. and they were used also by Roman sculptors for their works. It is worth a visit there to admire a scenery of unexpected beauty, with the white and gold of the marbles that blind the tourists.
Probably, the town with the most fashionable reputation is Forte dei Marmi. Throughout the decades it has gained a reputation to be the place where celebrities, sportsmen, intellectuals and wealthy people go for their summer holidays. It’is easy to understand why: its long white beach, with luxury resorts and the most charming villas in Tuscany , is a nice place to rest and sunbathe before hitting the streets and enjoy the renown clubs and bars with a lively nightlife.
However, Forte dei Marmi is up to date with the new Italian leisure trends: alongside the famous discos there is a wide range of wine bar, cafes and bars where you can enjoy a very fashionable Italian tradition: aperitivo. This consists of having a drink with some finger foods, usually with some soft music, so that it is possible to chat with no problem. A stroll in the city center offers a wide range of luxury shops where Russian oligarchs and VIPs love to buy their clothes and accessories. To enjoy the relaxed atmosphere of the town, it is better to rent a bike and cycle through its charming streets.
Forte dei Marmi is particularly fashionable among Italians themselves, but also Germans, Russians and Britons. Many important personalities decided to buy or rent villas in this location to enjoy the typical Tuscan atmosphere. Among the Germans, the most famous one who decided to spend his summer holidays there was Thomas Mann, due to the fact that his daughter owned a villa there. On the British side, Aldous Huxley lived in Forte dei Marmi in the 1920s, where he often met D.H. Lawrence.
Versilia keeps on fascinating contemporary personalities like fashion designer Giorgio Armani and tenor Andrea Bocelli. Therefore, it is interesting seeing on first hand why so many important people are fascinated by this part of Tuscany by spending summer holidays or a spring break in Versilia.