The first question you should ask yourself when planning an event, is “how do I want my guests to feel?” There might be different answers to this. You might want to impress a client, to create a friendly atmosphere for a new team of coworkers to get to know each other, or you might want to get the press interested in your new product. If you want, more than anything, to wow your attendees and to give them something to remember, a unique experience that they will tell their friends and family about, then you absolutely have to choose a stunning venue for your event. When international clients call us to plan their corporate events in Italy, particularly if they are after that kind of “wow” effect, we always suggest they ditch the main cities and host their event in a countryside villa.
The charm of an old country residence
The Italian countryside, from the Alps to the islands is dotted with spectacular villas, mansions, castles, and residences. These are often the vestiges of the Country’s feudal past, but some of them are converted farmhouses or summer residences whose original purpose no longer fits the pace or our contemporary lives. Depending on their history, on local customs and traditions, and on the specifics of each region and provinces, these old country residences may look like medieval fortifications or sunny villas, they may have peculiar shapes or be surrounded by vast grounds. What they all have in common, without a doubt, is a quaint charm and a unique atmosphere that will make your event pop.
When visiting a countryside villa for the first time, you will feel like stepping back through the ages, immersing yourself in the history of the families that have owned and lived in that ancient building, be it a farmhouse in the flat countryside of Apulia or a patrician house on the outskirts of Rome. Most of these buildings are located within reasonable distance of the regional capitals or major cities, since they were usually built as holiday residences, to be reached quickly and easily by coach, cart or on horseback. It is extremely rare for these villas to stand in places that are too remote or hard to access. This, in today’s’ fast-paced world and with the abundance of fast transport at our disposal, makes them ideal for a quick escape or a one-day event, requiring only minor adjustments to the schedule of your average city-dweller.
Multiple versatile spaces
If you ever visited a countryside villa in Italy, you might have guessed that it was not built as a venue for corporate events. Which, ironically, makes most of these building ideally suited to meet the needs of the modern event planner. These residences were originally fully staffed, with a full complement of personnel taking care of everything from the kitchen to the stables, from gardening to cleaning and doing the laundry. This small army of people, of course, needed lodgings of their own. As a result, the average countryside villa offers a variety of versatile spaces that no longer serve their original purpose and can be adapted to our contemporary needs. Vast grounds mean amazing garden space for your events, as well as ample parking (and often, if the owners have updated the building, a swimming pool). Old stables and barns can be converted in beautiful, rustic spaces to hold smaller, more intimate events that would make the largest halls look empty. Multiple service rooms can be converted into kitchen space for catering companies and storage facilities for sound and video equipment or decor elements.
Why a countryside villa is the perfect venue for your event
Corporate events rarely draw the kind of crowd as commercial events. This makes it harder to find amazing, distinguished spaces that are also the right size for a smaller crowd than a conference. A countryside villa will probably have smaller halls or converted stables that are just the right size and offers the perfect atmosphere. And, if you need to scale up quickly, you will simply have to decorate and set up the next room as well or move to the residence’s main hall. Summer and spring events will benefit from having a garden or terrace available, but there will always be plenty of indoor space in case of rain. And, in winter, you will be able to create a cozy and welcoming atmosphere for your guests within the thick and rustic walls of these mansions, maybe even create some yule-tide joy with a large fireplace lighting up the hall. Whatever the season or your event, there is a countryside villa in Italy that is just perfect for it.