The villa, one of the most beautiful in the world, enjoys a privileged location on the island of Capri.
The Villa “La Rondinaia” (The Swallow’s Nest) is certainly one of the most stunningly original villas on the Amalfi Coast and in Italy. This acclaim is due to many factors; its position, its scenic panoramas and a whole series of famous and illustrious guests who have enjoyed the unique qualities of the location. It is situated in Ravello, immersed in the wonderful natural beauty of its private park, it is wedged into the cliff face - hence the name The Swallow’s Nest. Building the villa was an audacious enterprise, there are still tales told in the village of construction workers tied to ropes hanging over the sheer cliff face, suspended in the air. A feat to literally take your breath away.
The Villa covers an area of about 950 meters and is surrounded by private grounds of 2.5 hectacres with serene paths leading through the trees. There are lemon trees, olive trees, pergolas with vines, a cobalt blue swimming pool, a pool house with a sauna and panoramic views. The house has six bedrooms and seven bathrooms. The interiors have vaulted ceilings, arched windows and doors and long tiled corridors leading to spacious rooms with fireplaces, balconies and terraces.
Building began at the beginning of the 20th century, in 1927, to be exact on the wishes of Lady Lucille (Lucy), the daughter of Ernest William Becket, Lord Grimthorpe would go on to become the Countess Szecheney. Becket was the creator and owner of the Villa Cimbrone and the surrounding parkland in which La Rondinaia was built.
The idea of La Rondinaia was first conceived in 1915. The project and the supervision of the works were given to Nicola Mansi, who was from the village itself.
Lord Grimthorpe had met Mansi in London and Mansi had already overseen the construction and development of the Villa Cimbrone. The job of actually building
La Rondinaia was given to Francesco Amato, he too was from Ravello, a master craftsman and stonemason.
The villa was also a place of refuge and privacy for over 33 years for the celebrated essayist, writer and dramatist Gore Vidal. He purchased La Rondinaia in 1972. Inspired by the stunning views, he wrote much of his work here, whilst giving splendid hospitality to great stars of the cinema, who on a visit to Ravello, could never miss out on a visit to this magical place. Only the privileged few could access the villa, which was strictly guarded against prying eyes up until 2005. At this point, Gore Vidal found himself physically unable to continue living in such a varied and large space. La Rondinaia then passed to new owners who began a series of intense renovations of the building and the surrounding land, giving new life to the villa, no less prestigious or exclusive than la Rondinaia’s previous existence. The villa is still reserved for a limited select choice of guests who are able to appreciate the presence of the memories contained within the villa’s walls and the extraordinarily beautiful setting.
The interior rooms and exterior areas of the La Rondinaia represent the quintessence of elegance, offering guests every luxury during their stay here. The interior of the villa has recently been sympathetically restored with respect to the artistic and historical restrictions and the architectural elements which are typical of this area. The furnishings and furniture were all created by local craftsmen, using materials of the highest quality, in 2019, which are integrated with some original elements and furniture of the villa. The interior of the villa is fully air conditioned and is, therefore suitable even for longer stays, for family and friends, with rooms such as, suites, junior suites and deluxe rooms, sleeping up to 12 people.