“Glorious country villa close to the coast, with 2 pools and delicious food (available by the room or as a rental for up to 18)”
There are just 6 bedrooms, 4 up and 2 down. All are light-filled, spacious, uncluttered and beautifully decorated. Walls, ceilings and sheer drapes are pure white, and shutters and blinds shield you from the morning sun. Beds are blissfully comfortable and dressed simply in white coverlets. It's the details which sing out: quirky headboards of framed fans, icons, a shelf of riding tackle, antique painted sideboards, vintage armoires, drawers and chairs, pastoral and equine-themed pictures. Lights come as mini-chandeliers, pendants and side lamps, or even as stars in the ceiling in the dining room.
The 2 downstairs Superior rooms (one of which, no.2, can be a twin) have French windows opening to the garden, and tubs rather than showers in their ensuite bathrooms.
Three of the upstairs rooms (Suite no.3, Suite no.6 and Classic no.4) share a balcony which faces to the south and west. Suite no.3 has a double shower and a daybed, and Suite no.6 is best for couples, with a whirlpool tub. The other room on this floor, Suite no.5, has big picture windows facing the pool and paddocks, an antique iron single bed, and a fabulous sunken tiled bath plus a drench shower in the ensuite bathroom.
One of the nicest things about staying at Masseria Prosperi is the quality and quantity of the food provided. Breakfast, included in the price, is a superb smorgasbord of every delectation you could wish for: freshly squeezed blood orange juice, coffee prepared to your precise specification, home-baked tarts, crostada and cakes, a selection of rolls, local jams, biscotti, cereals, charcuterie and goats' cheese, hot chocolate, fresh fruit, and traditional Puglian specialities.
We were out and about during the day so weren't at home for lunch (available on request - usually something simple such as a caprese salad, sandwiches, fruit), but we can vouch for the wonderful dinners (also on request) rustled up by Antonio and his team. You eat family-style at the communal table, and they check in with you as to what you'd prefer to eat that night. One evening we had sea bass baked in salt, another the most tender pork chop. At every meal was a fabulous array of locally grown, flavoursome vegetables, presented in simple Pugliese style - tender chicory, fava beans, braised vegetables on curry-flavoured couscous, aubergine broquettes. And excellent bottles of wine were available.
For eating out, there's a classic Italian restaurant and pizzeria, Da Umberto 1972, just next door, which is also an enoteca with its own wine cave. We can also recommend Menhir Salento in Minervino for its octopus dishes and wine tasting from its own vineyard, and the unpretentious but awesome pasta restaurant, Primo, in Otranto.
If you're taking the whole house, you still get the same bountiful breakfast and will also find a welcome basket of fruit and wine waiting for you. A shopping service can be arranged, see Rates, and you can book a chef on request. The professional kitchen is underneath the building and superbly well equipped; you will be preparing meals in the smaller kitchen in the living/dining room, which has full crockery, cutlery, glassware, a fridge, a hob and an oven. Food and farm shops are found locally around Frassanito, and there are supermarkets in Otranto, a 10-minute drive away.
All ages are welcome - Puglia is a great place to bring children on a family holiday. Mercedes and Antonio have 2 girls of their own, and are fantastic with kids. We think it best suited to primary-age children and younger, who will love the farm animals, pony rides and choice of pools, plus the lawns for romping around. Teenagers may be a little bored, although there are beaches close at hand.
Children sleeping in their parents' bed are not charged, note that there is a daily rate for cots and extra beds
Babies (0-1 years), Toddlers (1-4 years), Children (4-12 years)
The best rooms for families are the 2 larger Suites on the first floor, nos. 3 and 5. No.3 has a balcony and No.5 a sunken bath plus a shower. Both can take an extra bed and cot, and if required No.5 can take 2 extra beds. No.5 has wonderful picture windows over the pool to the back - useful for keeping an eye on the kids below. A baby cot can be added to the Superior rooms, and to Suite no.6.
Arranged on request
Remember baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking
The indoor pool is enclosed. The outdoor pool has a parapet surrounding it and a wide terrace, but isn't fenced as such. There are plenty of animals and dogs which may not suit kids with allergies. The staircase to the first floor doesn't have a banister to hold onto