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Borgo Batone A Place for communityfriends and Lovers of the simply beautiful life

Nestled in the Tuscan hills around the Lucca region and not far from the sea lies Borgo Batone. Batone has everything that makes a village a village: a harmonious collection of houses of different sizes, ages and functions, a well, a chapel, a village square and its own spring with healing water quality.

In addition, olive groves, a park with fruit trees and pergolas, vines, fragrant herbs, laurel hedges and flower beds - and greenery as far as the eye can see.

A village rich in history

The name of the village originates with the Roman legionary Bato. Most of the 17 buildings in the village date back to the late Middle Ages and the Renaissance. After centuries of agriculture and viticulture, the ensemble of buildings has remained uninhabited since the 1960s. A few years later, a couple of collectors from Viareggio discovered it during an excursion and immediately fell in love with it. Little by little, they carefully restored it, with the idea of turning it into an extended family residence.

Impressions from the Borgo

Borgo Batone reloaded

Taking up Mrs Ricci's and Mr Gattai's initial idea and inspired by the concept of the Albergo Diffuso, we wish to revive this magical place as a meeting place for friends and family, as a place for work and co-creation, as a stage for artistic and cultural events, as a place for winemakers, digital nomads and artists, as a refuge from everyday life - in short: as a kind of refuge of the soul.

Villa Barsotti

The jewel of the village is 'Villa Barsotti', a typical Lucchese villa dating back to the 16th century. The ancient residence has been restored with great care and sensitivity and is enriched with valuable regional antiques. A park-like garden with citrus trees, camellias, roses and olive trees surrounds the villa. From the swimming pool one has a splendid view of the Tuscan mountains and the neighbouring villages. The villa with garden will become a stage, reception, common area, dining room - thus the heart of the village.

The communal swimming pool in Villa Barsotti's garden, fed with spring water
Villa Barsotti, with its 456 square metres of living space on 4 floors

Albergo diffuso - What is it?

Borgo Batone is conceived as an albergo diffuso ("dispersed hotel"). A hotel that stretches across the entire village. Depending on the number of people and your mood, you can stay in a suite, a secluded chapel or a shared hotel room. This way you will always get to know new aspects of your village and have the flexibility to choose how many people you stay with. And no matter where, you can be sure to find an enchanting atmosphere everywhere!

Borgo Batone - How does it work?

In order to participate in the project, one subscribes shares that are converted into credits called 'Batoni'. These can be used to spend a holiday in the village. And if you want to do without the holiday, you can always sell or lend the batonis to other members.

And if you want to celebrate a very large party or come with extended family, simply make the village your village for that period. The village is also an ideal place for work that requires concentration, for seminars, artistic and cultural events.

On each visit you will not only meet new faces, but also familiar faces. Because some people will live permanently in the village, as caretakers, winegrowers or cooks. Ideally, the stay at Borgo Batone will be like a get-together with friends. Last but not least, Borgo Batone is also an investment. Because the surplus of rents from external guests goes back to the participating members.

FAQs

How should one imagine the use? Borgo Batone is conceived as a kind of albergo diffuso. One buys shares in the village and, depending on the amount of these shares, so-called credits. These credits can be used for a longer or shorter stay in Borgo Batone. Depending on the number of people travelling with you and your mood, you can stay in a suite, a secluded chapel or a shared hotel room. No matter where, you can be sure to find an enchanting atmosphere everywhere!

Can unused nights be given to friends or relatives? Yes, it is absolutely possible! They are either given away, exchanged or sold.

How much community and privacy will there be in the Borgo? We envisage a healthy mix of retreat and community, of tranquillity and liveliness, of tête-à-tête and conviviality. The central meeting place will be Villa Barsotti with its Fratino Table, a long table where people eat and celebrate together. Our ideal scenario: people are happy to meet, sit together at the Tavolo Fratino or do yoga by the pool. But you can also enjoy peace and quiet on your veranda. Even during the preparation phase everyone can participate, but no one is obliged to do so.

How big is the plot and how much space is usable? The property measures 25 hectares of land, consisting of vineyards, olive groves, woods, meadows, farmland, a mineral water spring and 17 buildings with a total area of 3600 sqm. The centrepiece is the 16th century Villa Barsotti, lovingly restored and furnished true to the original.

Is the village completely empty? Yes, the village is currently completely empty. Villa Barsotti and Casa Gabriello have been rented so far.

Who were the previous owners of the village? The village was in the hands of Mrs Ricci and Mr Gattai, a couple of art collectors from Viareggio. The couple gradually bought the individual buildings with the original aim of completely restoring them to their original state and using them as family residences.

Who currently owns the village? On the 13th of December 2022, we bought the village from signora Ricci and signor Gattai and are now the proud owners of Borgo Batone. We are a community of shareholders from various cities and regions in Germany and Europe. Some are also from Italy. We hope to win even more of them from now on :-)!

How long will the renovation take? We will restore the village piece by piece. This means that the loveliest months of the year can be spent undisturbed on holiday and in the winter months construction will take place. Consequently, the completion of all the work will take a long time. We currently anticipate that it will take five to eight years.

Will some people live in the Borgo all year round? The idea is for people who have a 'role in the village' to live there (cook, gardener, caretaker, winegrower, administrator...).

Is it possible to reach the Borgo by public transport? Yes, from Bologna for example there is a perfect train connection with a change in Florence. From Lucca a bus takes you almost to the gates of the Borgo. Or you can have a motorised guest pick you up. In the future, this role should also be taken over by the on-site administrator.

In what legal framework does the Borgo fit? In December 2021 the Borgo Batone S.R.L. was founded, company through which the project account is also managed. The managing director of this limited liability company is Massimo Fiorito. In future, Borgo Batone will be run as a cooperative, or more precisely, slip under the legal mantle of Vielleben eG.

How much does a share cost and how many shares are required to participate? One share is worth 10,000 euros. The ideal number of shares with which to participate is 10. However, it is possible to participate with a minimum of 5 shares.

How much time can you spend in the village?The amount of time one can spend at Borgo Batone depends on the number of credits (which we call 'Batonis') one obtains by purchasing shares. The cost in credits of each room or flat varies depending on the time of year, the quality of the flat and the number of people that can be accommodated. With the same number of credits you can therefore spend a longer or shorter period at BB, depending on when and where you book.

Are overnight stays completely free? No, because obviously the village must also be maintained. For each reservation there is a flat-rate management fee (10-20 euro per night and room per person). However, the aim is to cover these costs in the future by renting out to external guests.

Does one become the owner of a particular unit in the village? No, but you become the owner of a part of an entire village ;-). For a small investment (compared to an independent holiday property), you become a co-owner for life and beyond. Because shares can also be inherited.

Are there differences between members with different amounts of shares? No, there are not. Everyone has the same opportunity to express themselves and participate, regardless of whether you have 5 or 50 shares.

How are decisions made? For decisions affecting the community, we seek consensus. If this is not possible, the decision taken by the majority applies.

How big is the right of co-determination in design issues? The BB team provides proposals to the community. So the final decision lies with the community itself. But it is important to us that nobody feels forced to express their opinion.

Is Borgo Batone a German enclave in Tuscany? Although the majority of members currently come from Germany, that is not our goal. We already have people on board from France, Switzerland, Belgium, Italy, Afghanistan and Romania. Our wish is to win even more Italians for the project.

What do the neighbourhood and the municipality of Pescaglia think of the project? Since we presented our project in March 2022, we know that the neighbours are very enthusiastic about the rebirth of Borgo Batone. The project has been very well received. The mayor and the municipality also fully support the project.

Are there financing programmes for renovation/repair? Yes, there are. As part of the current feasibility study we are looking at various programmes.

Is Borgo Batone a real estate investment? Yes and no ;-)! We are convinced that the design of the Albergo Diffuso will create an added value that can also be quantified in euros in the future. In five or ten years time the shares will certainly have a higher value than at present and can be sold accordingly. At least as important: the added value we see in creating a healthy community and a sustainable place.

What is the condition of the buildings? The state of preservation varies greatly from building to building: from critical to excellent. Villa Barsotti with its 456 square metres is perfectly restored and furnished, 2 other houses are in great condition and ready for occupation. As far as we can judge at this moment, none of the buildings are so dilapidated that they cannot be restored.

Who is the BB team? Behind the project is the architectural firm agmm Architekten + Stadtplaner, which specialises in village planning and community projects, and an interdisciplinary team consisting of a historian, two artists, an entrepreneur and an IT specialist. They are Patric F.C. Meier (architect), Katrin Frische (historian), Narcisa Fluturel (artist), Massimo Fiorito (photographer), Nina Nisar (moderator and host), Mahmood Nisar (entrepreneur), Oliver Fuhrmann (IT engineer) and Ilaria Manetta (architect).

What is the role of the initiators? We see ourselves as facilitators. And because we have fallen in love with the place, we are also involved as partners. In this respect we wear different hats: some as visionaries and promoters, others as service providers and all of us as users of Borgo Batone.

Are dogs allowed in the village? Yes, they are :-)

Italy fans, culture lovers, friends of the simply good life, welcome! //Onboarding-Process

We are two years in the making as a community, and in year one of owning and running the village. This fall, we will complete our initial community building.

Here is all you need to know about our OnBoarding process:

We are two years in the making as a community, and in year one of owning and running the village. This fall, we will complete our initial community building.

Here is all you need to know about our OnBoarding process:

1/ Join one of three live InfoCall this fall, you can sign up here. We also offer an onsite InfoEvent in October to experience the Borgo, sign up here.

2/ After the InfoCall, you can use the weekly Q&A to clarify any further questions: Mondays 15:00-15:45 at +49 179 7732218, Nina is hosting those calls.

3/ Ready to join? Then fill out your profile and send it to onboarding@borgo-batone.com.

4/ Afterwards, sign up for one of our OnBoarding calls here, the moment before the final decision on both sides.

For a glimpse now, here is the recording of an Info Call of October 2022:

What has happened so far

In June 2021, we discovered Borgo Batone and immediately fell in love with this enchanting place. This led to the idea of collectively revitalising the abandoned Tuscan village in the form of an Albergo Diffuso. By the end of 2021, we managed to get enough people excited about Borgo Batone that we were able to make the first down payment on the village. We then founded the Borgo Batone SRL (the Italian equivalent of a German GmbH).

In March 2022, we presented the project to the community and neighbours who enthusiastically encouraged us - a good feeling and the best prerequisite for the success of our project!

The first 'Make-up Camp' took place in June 2022, during which the number of beds increased from 16 to 33 thanks to the commitment of the shareholders.

On the 13th December 2022 we bought the village with the financial means and the power of the community. We are now the proud owners of Borgo Batone and a group of almost 80 members participate in the project :-)

The pioneer MeerLeben

With the MeerLeben holiday village, we have realised a pioneering project on the Baltic Sea. An ecologically constructed village, consisting of 13 individual houses and lush communal areas, and clothed in the legal form of a housing community. With Borgo Batone, the MeerLeben success story continues. You can read the story of Meerleben here.

Team

We are an interdisciplinary team from different parts of the world. What unites us is the desire to make Borgo Batone a vibrant place of encounter and inspiration.

Das Borgo Batone von oben

The location

Batone is part of the municipality of Pescaglia. In the vicinity of Borgo Batone there are several small villages with good basic services: In San Martino in Freddana there is a grocery store, a bakery, a doctor and several trattorias - everything you need to live well. 10 km away is Lucca, a fantastic medieval cultural city. Viareggio and Forte dei Marmi with their beaches are about 20 km away. Florence can be reached within an hour. Siena, Volterra, San Gimignano, Arezzo, Sarzana, the Cinque Terre and Parma can be visited on a day trip.

We can't wait to meet you!!

left to right Massimo Fiorito, Mahmood Nisar, Nina Nisar, Patric F.C. Meier, Katrin Frische, Oliver Fuhrmann, Narcisa Fluturel, Marlin Nisar. Contact: info@borgo-batone.com

Impressum

Borgo Batone SRL., Managing Director Massimo Fiorito, GEMEINSCHAFT ALBERGO DIFFUSO BORGO BATONE S.R.L. c/o Villa Barsotti, località Batoni, 55064 Pescaglia (LU), P.I.: 02619090463

Email: borgo.batone@legalmail.it. Phone: +49 089 / 4613345-10, Website: www.borgo-batone.com. Borgo Batone SRL accepts no liability for the content of external links.

Responsible for content: Katrin Frische, www.frische-biografien.de