The Masseria Moroseta is just 10 minutes from Ostuni, a seaside resort in the region of Apulia. On one side it faces the Adriatic coast, while the other looks out onto a bucolic landscape of vines and olive trees. The immaculate rooms decorated with a ‘less is more’ vibe feature individual patios and the guesthouse serves locally sourced food that’s to die for. In addition, a spectacular, polished concrete above ground pool provides the perfect finishing touch making this the ideal getaway destination for city- dwellers looking for a short break in Italy.
Carlo Lanzini had always dreamt of one day opening a guesthouse where he could invite his friends and family to come and stay. At first, he had set his sights on Nardò and its surrounding area in the south of Apulia, until that is he discovered Ostuni by chance while driving around. As soon as he saw “La Città Bianca”, it was love at first sight. He spent a year looking for the right place before, in 2012,coming across a “masseria” (a traditional farmhouse) set on five hectares of land planted with hundredyear-old olive trees and boasting views of the sea. Four years later the Masseria Moroseta is now open. The project is also the story of two friends, of Carlo and Andrew Trotter, the English editor of lifestyle magazine Openhouse. Their friendship started some twenty or so years ago ago when they met in London, where Carlo was studying cinema at Central Saint Martins. Andrew had often accompanied Carlo on his trips to find the perfect country home, so it was only natural that he offered his services, after all he had trained as an interior designer. And that was that. It was ‘bye bye’ to the original building (that was just a bit too 70s) and ‘hello’ to a new, minimal, all-white construction facing the sea, in which every little detail was set off to perfection. To build the vaulted ceilings and thick walls (needed to keep the occupants nice and cool, even on the hottest day) Andrew called upon the services of local artisans and their wealth of traditional know-how in working with natural materials. The result is so impressive that you could almost think you were looking at an age-old farmhouse!
At the Masseria Moroseta sustainability is key and the guesthouse’s solar panels and well-thought out insulation make it 80 % energy self-sufficient. Four bedrooms and two suites with private patios are set to each side of a courtyard planted with fruit trees. There is a big living-dining room, a kitchen with a large communal table where breakfast is served (fresh fruit juice, granola, banana bread, orange fruit salad, omelette with herbs and clafoutis… all of which are homemade), as well as a hot tub, hammam and sauna in an adjacent building. Three times a week, Carlo organises dinners for all his guests and invites Giorgia Goggi to come and cook at the “masseria”. The young Italian chef works exclusively with local ingredients, some of which come from the farm itself, to make her creative, locavore-friendly dishes, which are served on lovely ceramic tableware made in the nearby village of Grottaglie. Should you want to buy some unique pieces just ask Carlo. He also sells extra virgin olive oil produced on site, as well as other products, and is a mine of information on other places to find that special something, notably ceramics from Grottaglie or pieces from his favourite antique dealer in Ostuni.
Just 25 minutes from Brindisi airport, the Masseria Moroseta is a great base from which to visit the surrounding sites of natural beauty: Ostuni of course and its picturesque old- town overlooked by Santa Maria Assunta cathedral; Alberobello, a village famous for its “trulli”, traditional conical-roofed little buildings with whitewashed stone walls; Martina Franca, which is known for its baroque basilica dedicated to Martin de Tours; and the town of Polignano a Mare perched on top of limestone cliffs. And back from your wanderings, what better than to simply relax on the patio or in the pool amidst the olive trees, or enjoy a treatment in the wellbeing centre with its hot tub, hammam and sauna. Unless you prefer a leisurely bike ride through the olive trees along the paths that wind around the “masseria”.