Casa Salento

  • Location: Town / Village
    Restaurants and shops: In walking distance
    Galatina for more restaurants: 8 minutes by car
    Lecce: 25 mins by car
    Closest beach: 30 mins by car
  • Brindisi Airport (BDS): 50 mins by car
    Bari Airport (BRI): 2hs 10 mins by car
    Car recommended
    Free parking
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An introduction to Casa Salento

How would you describe Casa Salento in a nutshell?

Dating from the 16th century, Casa Salento is a two-storey property in the historic heart of a small Puglian town near Lecce.

What’s the story behind Casa Salento, what was your inspiration to create it?

Andrew and I go to Puglia very often because of our work connections and, while looking at properties, he found this one online. It was a difficult purchase because the real estate agent initially said it was taken and this was all happening during Covid. 

The house used to be owned by an Italian family who lived there for many years. Eventually, they moved to Rome and were using the house less and less. By the time we purchased it, the house had been empty for quite a few years.

The refurbishment was a lot of work, as the house wasn’t up to 21st-century standards, and the oldest parts date back around 400 years. When we removed the plaster covering the facade, we realised there were three different materials beneath, so there were also a lot of decisions to be made!

How would you describe the atmosphere and the interior design of Casa Salento?

Elegant, historical, soothing and peaceful. When we bought it, the house was beautiful and with lots of charm. It just needed a bit of love and a few changes. A lot of the furnishings are vintage and feel as though they belong. As a result, you have the feeling of entering into a house that has been there for a long time.

Was there a specific philosophy you followed when designing the space?

We wanted to preserve the identity of the property by keeping as many original details as possible but with the comfort of the 21st century. Throughout the process, we tried to stay as true to the area as possible. Italy has a strong visual identity that we wanted to embrace, rather than creating something too modern that felt out of place. 

In making many of the decisions, we went with our gut feeling while working with the existing light to come up with colour palettes. For example, in the darker rooms, we have embraced this with darker walls, rugs and furnishings. By using natural materials, jute rugs and linens, I think we created a place that is soothing, cosy and leaves you feeling inspired. 

To you personally, what is so special about Casa Salento?

It’s a place that is steeped in history. The town of Soleto is small but it was once one of the most important in the region. Casa Salento combines the benefits of being in the heart of a Puglian town with having your own outdoor areas and plunge pool.

Inside the property, every room surprises you — some are larger than others and most have vaulted ceiling — because it has been developed over the years. It feels authentic and is like an oasis. It’s the perfect place to relax and enjoy the slow Italian lifestyle. 

Casa Salento is also important to us because we put our heart and soul into it — every corner is special and carefully thought out. After our own experience staying here, we can confirm that it is very quiet (there is no noise except for the church bells) and depending on the moment, there are different rooms to relax in.

Largest bedroom
Living room
Media room
Media room
Media room
Living room
Living room
Living room
Dining room
Dining room
Dining room
Dining room
Largest bedroom
Detail largest bedroom
Green room to Street room
Green room to Largest bedroom
Street room
Street room
Left side bedroom
Single bedroom
Garden room
Garden room
Outside staircase
Plunge pool
Plunge pool
Plunge pool
Plunge pool

Casa Salento rooms & rates

The house is approximately 250 square meters set across two floors and with some ceilings reaching up to five meters in height. After entering the house, you access a courtyard with a staircase that takes you up to the first floor. In the courtyard, there is an outdoor table and chairs where you can enjoy breakfast or dinner as there is no direct sunlight. 

Across the courtyard is the living room (which was once the dining room) and this is bathed in lots of light. During the restorations, we poured a terrazzo-style floor here and redid the sewage system to take it out to the street. We tried to keep most of the original floors, as they give a lot of identity to the house. For the walls of this room (and the rest of the house) we used a wonderful Belgian brand of plasters called Domingue Finishes.

Also on the ground floor is the formal dining room (this used to be the living room). We’ve embraced its dark feel with a slightly darker plaster that gives it a church feeling and added an 18th-century dining table and chairs. It’s simple but impressive. 

Also on the ground floor, there is the kitchen, which is largely original and feels much like a 1950s nonna’s kitchen, complete with an old-school cooking range. In addition to removing the paint and treating the wood, we added a few modern appliances to make it suitable for the way we live today. 

There are comfortable sofas in both the Garden Room (which we painted green) and the Media Room, with the sofas here easily converting into two single beds to accommodate more guests. Behind the Media Room is a powder room with an outdoor shower. 

The existing garden already had a lot of charm due to its greenery but we did a lot of work on the walls and added a built-in bench plus a two-level terrace made from local stones. We also created a plunge pool and it makes a huge difference to be able to have a swim when it’s hot outside. 

On the first floor is the sleeping area, which consists of three double bedrooms, one single bedroom and three bathrooms. When you reach the top of the outdoor staircase (which is quite steep), it divides into two. To the right, there is the Green Room with a vaulted ceiling and a French table. This leads to one of the bedrooms, which has high ceilings and looks out over the street and the main church of the town. Adjacent is a brand-new bathroom with a shower, toilet and sink, plus a walk-in robe. 

To the left of the Green Room is the largest bedroom (which used to be a library) and this is furnished with pieces that were left by the previous owners. It has its own terrace overlooking the garden, with two chairs and a small table. There is also a spacious, ensuite bathroom (it was once a bedroom), with a Victorian bathtub and a vintage shower column.

If you go to the left at the top of the stairs you reach what I sometimes call the Funky Room. It is painted with a subtle yellow and furnished with a late XVIII/ early XIX century red wardrobe from Lombardy, red headboards and a long bench from France. Also on the first floor, there is another room with a charming single bed frame that was originally in the house and a vintage-style bathroom that fits in perfectly with the style of the house. 

All of the mattresses are very comfortable and with beautiful, cotton bedding and throughout the house there are rugs by an Australian company, Armadillo. They make the house feel cosy and allow you to walk barefoot. 

NOTE: the only access to the first floor is through an outdoor staircase. Please be aware that it is fairly steep :)

  • Casa Salento for 7-9 people / 250 m²
    / night
    • 3 Double bedrooms
    • 1 Single bedroom
    • 1 Bathroom (ensuite)
    • 2 Shower rooms (ensuite)
    • 2 Living rooms
    • 1 Dining room
    • 1 Kitchen
    • 2 Other rooms
    • 2 Extra beds (on req.)
    • 1 Sofabed (on req.)
    • Terrace
    • Balcony
    • Fireplace
    • Air conditioning
Included in the rates
Rates include cleaning every two days, final cleaning, change of bedding and towels mid week.
Children & Extra beds
Children of all ages are welcome. But please be aware that there are some items in the house that are quite delicate (and some that could pose a danger to young guests).
Minimum stay
3 - 7 nights (check calendar for dates)
Check in time
after 15:00
Check out time
before 11:00
Discounts/Special offers
20% off 1 July 2024 - 31 July 2024
20% off 1 August 2024 - 31 August 2024

Facilities & services

  • Terrace
  • Children welcome
  • WiFi
  • Air conditioning
  • Garden
  • Washing machine
  • TV
  • Fireplace
  • Courtyard
  • Whirlpool/Plunge pool
  • Music system
  • Central heating
  • Iron & Board
  • Safe box
  • Hair dryer

In addition to Wi-Fi and a TV, we include a cleaning every two days, final cleaning and the change of bedding and towels mid-week in the rates. The plunge pool is salt water and not heated (because the courtyard receives a lot of sunlight in the summer months). On request, we can arrange for a masseuse to come to the house and set up a spa in the Garden Room. In the future, we may also offer a private chef on request. 

The plunge pool is 3x2 metres and is not heated. Since it is located in an open courtyard, it receives a lot of sunlight to warm it.

NOTE: the only access to the first floor is through an outdoor staircase. Please be aware that it is fairly steep :)


  • Air conditioning (cooling and heating)
  • Alarm system
  • Wi-Fi
  • Safe
  • Fireplace
  • Fully equipped kitchen (ILVE cooking range, fridge, freezer, dishwasher).
  • Nespresso machine
  • 3x2m Plunge pool (not heated) with sun lounge and outdoor shower
  • Outdoor table seating 6 people
  • Additional covered terrace with seating area
  • Washing machine and dryer
  • TV
  • BOSE sound system
  • Easy parking 100 meters away

Things to do in Puglia & Soleto

  • Art / Culture
  • Shopping / Markets
  • Wine tastings
  • Massages / Treatments
  • Hiking
  • Horseback riding
  • Boat trips

Most people who visit Puglia usually hire a car and drive around. I would recommend exploring Galatina, Ostuni and the villages nearby. Lecce shouldn’t be missed and the Lido Castellana in Otranto is an old-school beach club that is very cool. I’d also recommend Bar Alimentari Tabacchi da Carlo in Porto Badisco — they serve great food next to a great beach.

The location of Casa Salento

Soleto is a special place. It is a small, charming town in the province of Lecce, with around 5,000 inhabitants living here. The town feels like it has been lost in time, like a set from an old movie. The kids still play in the streets, the old men debate on the stairs, the grandmas make pasta. It’s what you imagine Italy to be like.

The area is known for its fantastic food, great coffee and pasticciotti (small cream filled cakes). This is not the place for a diet. There are three or four restaurants nearby, most of which are only open at night, and the closest supermarket is just two minutes away. So if you forget to buy milk, you can find everything you need in seconds.

Soleto is located five minutes’ drive from the beautiful town of Galatina (which is more lively and with a greater choice of restaurants) and 20 minutes from Nardò and Lecce, the capital of the area. Lecce is often called the “Florence of the South” due to its Baroque architecture and amazing food.

We are in the middle of the peninsula, around 25 minutes’ drive from each coast, with Gallipoli and Otranto on opposite sides. The calm waters of Gallipoli and, to the south, what they call the Maldives of Italy. Each coast is quite different, with many beaches and towns to visit. Ostuni and the Itria Valley are about one hour away while Polignano a Mare is roughly 1.5 hours’ drive.

When is the best time to visit Puglia?

Spring, summer and autumn, although each season has its own beauty.