Borgo Giusto: a natural and relaxing experience to live

Borgo Giusto: a natural and relaxing experience to live

Have you ever heard about Borgo Giusto? It is located 18 kilometres from Lucca, Tuscany, and it is the reconstruction of a small 17th century village called Soccolognora. Let’s discover its history, its rebirth and its relaxing location surrounded by nature.

 

In the 17th century in Tuscany – then named Tuscia - all the villages had different names from the present ones.

 

There was a hamlet called Soccolognora, born from the building of houses one next to the other, surrounding a small square and connected by flights of stairs and alleys.

 

Life flowed slowly, marked by the rhythms of farming jobs, and the hamlet was fully plunged in nature, surrounded by chestnut trees and land cultivated with vines and olive trees.

 

At the beginning of the 17th century, though, the daily routine started to change, also because of the migration of the inhabitants towards England, and the small hamlet was left almost completely uninhabited.

 

After industrialization, also the few people left moved away, looking for less hard work than the rural one.

 

So, approximately 50 years ago, the village became totally depopulated.

 

Borgo Giusto and Puccini’s bang

 

There is a very funny anecdote about this village, telling of a bang caused by Giacomo Puccini, the famous Italian opera composer.

 

He was born in Lucca, but used to visit the house of his grandfather in Celle, another small village nearby, and not everybody knows that, as a young man, he was rather unruly.

In 1876, when he was eighteen, he became friends with the Giusti family from Partigliano and, being close to the place, he would often go to visit them or join them hunting in the woods.

 

There were seven Giusti brothers, all of them about the same age as Puccini, and in turns, they would lend him their rifles.

 

One day, so enthusiastic about going hunting, young Giacomo hastily grabbed his rifle, which was caught up in his haversack and fired a bullet.

Luckily, nobody was hurt, and the only damages were a big noise in the house and a hole in the roof.

 

During the reconstruction of the village, that hole was found, covered with a cloth, even after one century!

 

The Giusti family never repaired it, just to show everybody what “loony Giacomo” had done.

 

Borgo Giusto: the rebirth

 

The rehabilitation of the village started in 1995 as an exciting challenge, because only a few remembered the original structure of Soccolognora and its inhabitants.

 

The rebirth began like a magic when each house took the name of its last inhabitant and was renovated with the typical light-coloured stone with which it had been built originally.

 

That is how Soccolognora became Borgo Giusto, from the name of Ettore Giusti, ancestor of the family who occupied it first.

 

Time had not caused big structural damages, although the houses had been abandoned several decades before, as it was not a long period for buildings made of sound stone. Moreover, the wood had safeguarded a spring of groundwater, a symbol of continuing life and a positive signal for the rebuilding.

 

The restoration transformed Borgo Giusto in a multi-building hotel, but it was decided to keep the original structure of the location, adding all modern comforts.

 

Borgo Giusto: a multi-building, eco-friendly hotel

 

The beauty of Borgo Giusto is, actually, its architectural accuracy in recreating the original structure of Soccolognora.

 

In each residence you can admire beautiful stone walls on sight and stone kitchen sinks, braziers, original fireplaces still perfectly working.

 

Heating is ecological and provided by a huge wood-burning central boiler, connected to a computer to allow to control the temperature in each house and manage it respecting the environment.

 

In winter the boiler is fed with the wood from the surrounding woods, while in summer hot water and electricity come from the sunlight, thanks to photovoltaic and solar facilities.

 

In total respect of nature, the restaurant offers local products from its own farm or from the near ones, where the farmers are friends of the environment.

 

Borgo giusto: comfort, luxury and relax

 

Borgo Giusto is the ideal place if you are looking for relax and quiet days, with a slow rhythm and surrounded by nature.

 

Each residence has a Jacuzzi bathtub, Wi-Fi, television of the latest generation; the village offers a spa area, with a pool, a sauna, a Turkish bath and a wellness zone for relaxing massages with herbs or mud.

 

A SPA in the nature, a magical place to be cuddled and take care of yourself, with a scent of pines and a great view of the Apuan Alps.

 

Mind and body will find again the harmony and the energy needed to better face your daily routine.

 

After sunset this location turns into a very romantic and charming place, perfect for unforgettable memories.

 

There is a dedicated relax area where you can sip a herbal infusion while laying on a chaise longue.

 

Borgo Giusto: what and where to eat

 

During your stay at Borgo Giusto you will have the possibility to taste typical Tuscan products, cultivated with care and love for the environment, without any chemicals:

 

  • Extra-virgin olive oil: pure, with an intense taste, made from first cold pressing of hand-picked olives. It is certified by protected designation of origin (PDO).
  • Honey: the main three varieties have different characteristics. Chestnut honey, rich in mineral salts, with a dark colour and a strong taste; acacia honey, delicate and sweet; the so-called millefiori honey (literally ‘a thousand flowers’), with a slightly fruity and flowery taste.
  • Fruit: plantations mainly include olives, grapes, apples, pears, peaches, plums, quinces, cherries, figs, nuts, persimmons, loquats and chestnuts.
  • Vegetables: tomatoes, zucchini, eggplants, salad and a wide variety of aromatic herbs such as laurel, parsley, mint, sage, rosemary, thyme and, above all, the typical nepitella (also known as Calamint) which grows in the Lucca countryside.

 

To fully taste the well mixed flavours in original recipes, you can try the restaurant of Borgo Giusto “Il Gallo Brillo” (literally ‘The Tipsy Rooster’).

 

You will find a cosy but elegant flare and tasty courses combining tradition and cooking innovation.

 

Borgo Giusto: what to visit in the surroundings

 

Borgo Giusto is just 18 kilometres from Lucca: an ideal location to visit this beautiful Tuscan city. But that’s not all!

 

In Borgo a Mozzano you can admire the “Ponte della Maddalena”, also known as ‘The Devil’s Bridge’, because, as legend has it, its tallest, widest and most impressive arch was realised by the devil in person.

 

Another must-see is the medieval hamlet of Castelnuovo di Garfagnana, with its typical alleys and plenty of monuments of high historical and artistic value.

 

An original visit, instead, could be the one to the Vagli Lake, from which to see the suspended bridge inaugurated in 2016.

When it happens that they drains the lake, it appears this little village ( Fabbriche di Cariggine) that is now underwater.

The lake is emptied only for exceptional maintenance reasons, and there were outstanding pictures of the last two times when this happened, in 1983 and 1994.

Those were the last two occasions in which it has been possible to visit the submerged village.

 

I hope to have made you curious and given you interesting suggestions to book your stay in Borgo Giusto and visit nearby!

20/04/2018