The Torrino dei Gelsi Farm and Resort

Villa d'Este

"...wherever you lay your gaze, pools spout in all ways and manners and with such splendid artistry that should there be a similar place on earth it is bound to be far inferior." (Letter by Uberto Foglietta to Flavio Orsino, 1569)

Just 15 minutes away from Torrino dei Gelsi, in Tivoli , there is Villa D'Este. It is considered to be the finest example of the garden "alla italiana" and has been included in the list of world heritage sites. A bewildering array of fountains, nymphs, grottoes, water play and music contribute to create a much imitated model for mannerist and baroque gardens across Europe.

The villa was built by cardinal Hyppolite II d'Este, governor of Tivoli in 1550, who wished to reproduce here the pomp of the courts of Ferrara , Rome and Fontainebleau . Though Hyppolite II had immediately envisaged a perfect setting for his villa - the craggy hillside - work on the residence only started in after 1560. The construction continued after the death of the cardinal in 1572 and were finally terminated a century later by the great baroque artist Gianlorenzo Bernini between 160 and 1670. (