Crickets and green and country chic: Ca’ Maranghi in Val di Senio

Sandra bought this house when she was in her mid-twenties. Not only because she fell in love with the place but also, she tells me, because this is the area where her grand parents fell in love, got married and then got married again (50 years later: golden wedding anniversary). It’s a secluded place, surrounded by green and silence and some 10 minutes by car from the little village of Palazzuolo sul Sanio, in the Mugello wild hills between Bologna (about an hour away) and Florence. Ca’ Maranghi, that’s its name, became a B&B some years later, after a work of restoration and redecoration that reflects the owner’s impeccable taste.

An art collector, globetrotter (in the winter, when Ca’ Maranghi is closed, she travels with couch surfing all around the world) and a lover of her Romagna roots, she cheerfully mixes country chic furnishings with a love for cooking, baking and welcoming guests from all around the world. While I’m visiting, the house is full with a dutch middle age couple, a young family from the States and Canadian dj (Lady J) who lives in Brisighella. Quite an eclectic mix. Lady J is playing in for the beer festival in the village, but don’t expect to come here to find a bursting nightlife: this is just the opposite, a place for resting, contemplating or making love, if you come here with a special one.

The day is made for walks around the river nearby, a visit in some village or just my favorite thing when I’m in this kind of places: staying in the garden, listening to the crickets, finding some place in the shadow and read a book or just being. Nature is soothing, and so are Sandra’s lovely manners, and it is up to you how you decide to spend your time, that in such an isolated, secluded space, gets a whole new, slower pace.


The five rooms have each its peculiar style. I stayed in the “Master’s bedroom”, sober and tasteful, full of old country furniture that resonates of minimalism and “art povera” taste. But my favorite is the big one in the ground floor, with a lilac wall in the threshold, state-of-the-art design bed and a kitchen-living room where a massive design sofa coexists with concrete walls and the magnificent green view on the window and patio. Quite a sight. If you choose to go to Ca’ Maranghi (and I strongly recommend it) ask for that one. And indulge in a chat with the lovely Sandra.

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