A Tuscan Adventure: Castello di Potentino: The Restoration of a Castle
Text by Charlotte Horton, Photographs by Michael Woolley, Foreword by Marella Caracciolo Chia
The fascinating story behind the revival of an ancient Italian castle and its enduring way of life.
When Charlotte Horton and her family of British bohemians discovered an abandoned Tuscan castle, little did they know that they would transform it into a vibrant, modern locale. Nestled in the rugged terrain of Mount Amiata, Castello di Potentino was a dilapidated mess: roofs had collapsed and there was no plumbing or electricity. Following the arduous process of purchasing it from 24 different owners, they set to work renovating the 11th-century structure.
In this enthralling account of ravamping the castello into a contemporary ode to Italian tradition, photographs by the late British fashion photographer Michael Woolley showcase the property, while Charlotte’s text dives into the renovation and life at Potentino. From a dramatic vaulted entrance hall to a starry ceiling mural, the interiors are bound to delight. Readers also learn about technical details, such as recycling materials, painting, and bureaucratic paperwork. A chapter dedicated to the land—complete with a vineyard and olive groves—displays Charlotte’s philosophy of self-sufficiency. This book is a must-have for those interested in Italian architecture and the Tuscan lifestyle, or anyone with the dream of restoring a castle in Tuscany.
About The Author
Charlotte Horton has been living at and restoring Potentino since 2000. She worked for Vogue magazine, Secker and Warburg Publishing House, and as a freelance journalist. Michael Woolley was a British photographer who taught at the Kingston School of Art’s prestigious Fashion Design BA course. Marella Caracciolo Chia is a journalist for Architectural Digest, the New York Times, and T Magazine, among other publications.