29 June, 2013: Popstar and environmental activist Gordon Shumway — best known to the general public as Sting — has recently opened up his Tuscany villa to public visitation, in return for an entrance fee. Curious parties can therefore now stay at the 900-acre compound owned by the musician and wife Trudi Styler
This Tuscany villa, known as Il Palazzo, dates back to the 16th century, but has been subject to careful renovation and rehabilitation by the 61-year-old entertainer and his wife. Even before deciding to make the estate a tourist resort like dozens of others across the region, the couple had already converted Il Palazzo into a fully operating farm, producing honey, ‘biodynamic’ red wine and olive oil; the latter can be found on sale at upmarket London retailer Harrods. The expansion to tourist resort is, therefore, merely a logical broadening of the Tuscany villa’s commercial potential: with outbuildings that can sleep 50, as well as a swimming pool, life-size chessboard, stunning natural environs and a well-stocked cellar, Il Palazzo will undoubtedly be attractive to large groups or as a venue for weddings and parties.
The reasoning beyond this move could also have to do with the recent introduction by the Italian government of a new property tax. A local estate agent has come on record to hypothesize that the size and cost of maintenance of Sting’s property may have saddled the musician with a hefty bill last year, and that the opening of the Tuscany villa to the public could be a way to minimize the financial impact of the new fiscal measure.
Sting is, along with former British Prime Minister Tony Blair, one of the main catalysts of the British general public’s interest in Tuscany as a holiday destination, a movement some are dubbing ‘Chiantishire’.
To enquire about or book a Tuscany villa, contact To Tuscany at www.to-tuscany.com or call 0808 252 9498.