Masseria Torre Maizza is situated in Fasano, Puglia. This is an area best known for the charming trulli that scatter the landscape. Less well known are the many Masseria that date back hundreds of years, once owned by local land barons. Similar to a Spanish hacienda or plantation house these are historic farm complexes, often fortified and with watchtowers to protect from Turk or pirate attack.
Two of these – the 16th century Masseria Torre Maizza and its nearby twin, Masseria Torre Coccaro, have found a new lease of life as exclusive 5* luxe hotels. Accessed by winding local lanes and surrounded by rolling fields, ancient olive groves and pastures these are perfect and idyllic spots to use as the base for your Puglian holiday.
We stayed at the Masseria Torre Maizza where farm buildings built of white volcanic tufa have been supplemented by spacious suites built through the verdant flower-filled gardens.
A cool courtyard is at its heart, enclosed by the walls of the historic Masseria Torre Maizza, and there are numerous areas here in which to relax: under the ancient vaulted ceilings, in cosy lounges, on terraces that overlook the pool or a roof top lounging area – a perfect spot to watch the sunset Aperol in hand.
Dining is taken seriously here with the meals here of particularly good quality. The Le Palme restaurant sits in the former stables – with views over the pool – and spills out under a pergola surrounded by orange trees.
With an emphasis on local products the menu was spectacularly creative. We enjoyed starters like buckwheat frisella with raw seafood, orange cardamom mustard and tea flavoured shabu-shabu, whilst mains included for example sweet pepper flavoured spaghettone on wholemeal bread and caper cream with fresh origano and Gallipoli anchovies.
There was of course plenty of beautifully fresh fish and seafood whilst you could mix and match regional specialities selecting from a separate menu. As for desserts…
Everything was at least as delicious as it sounds, service was immaculate and discrete and the charming and knowledgeable sommelier Paolo was always at hand. Elio, the direttore, was ever in the background, always with a keen eye on the staff and a charming word for the guests.
In the morning Italians have a frighteningly sweet tooth and the Masseria Torre Maizza large table creaked with a big choice of freshly cakes and pastries alongside fresh juices and an array of fruits. There was plenty more savoury choice whilst the chef was happy to cook up anything on request.
The twenty eight rooms are minimal in style with a healthy dose of luxury. Off white walls, cream bedding, white chairs, pale stone walls and dark woods keep it bright and contemporary and needless to say pretty much every extra is at hand.
We were spoilt in the Palm Suite, which has the added luxury of a separate lounge, private pool and a log fire – perfect for cooler evenings off season.
All Masseria Torre Maizza rooms though are a very good size, all but a handful with outdoor terraces. Suites have extra space and log fires. Bathrooms are white, chrome and dark wood with the larger suites enjoying double basins and fabulous big jacuzzi baths.
Beach lovers will adore the hotel’s own Coccaro Beach Club, a 4km free shuttle away. It is a stunning space with private gazebos – fitted with floaty white curtains – massage pavilions, a fabulous sushi restaurant, boutique and a lounge. Those wanting to party can enjoy DJs through until the early hours! Oh yes, and there’s a fabulous long sandy beach too.
Masseria Torre Maizza has a frighteningly long menu of extra-curricular activities that include the likes of cycling, visits to local producers, golfing, yoga and Puglian cookery classes. Last but not least the Aveda Spa occupies the main tower with signature treatments that home grown herbs and local olive oil.
Both hotels are set up not only for those passing through for a few days Puglia sightseeing or beach break but a full-on active week or more stay and you can shuttle between hotels and enjoy most of the facilities whichever hotel you book. Whilst its tempting to book up just a short break we can guarantee that you will only leave, as we did, wishing your visit had been at least a few days longer!
For more information visit Masseria Torre Maizza
Also see Masseria Torre Coccaro
CELLOPHANELAND* were guests of Masseria Torre Maizza
For our curated recommendations for Art, Culture, Design and Architecture books visit the CELLOPHANELAND* bookstore
All images by Masseria Torre Maizza and CELLOPHANELAND*