When we first turned into the avenue of cypress trees leading from the main road to the Abbey of Spineto, we felt not so much a sense of discovery, more a sense of recognition...
The stone wall and the capital, the fragrance of cypress trees combined with that of box trees, the stables fallen into disuse, the ancient farmhouses
lying empty beside the lake, even the three apses in the Romanesque church, all were familiar to us as though they were places we had known and loved many years before...
Thus began, in March 1990, our extraordinary “adventure”. For fifteen years, day after day, we dedicated our time to the restoration and reclamation of the Abbey and the twelve ancient farmhouses belonging to it.
Today the Abbey has a new lease of life, saved from the danger of being lost for ever among the ruins of time.
It is a place that should be shared and its new function is, to a certain extent, consistent with its past.
It was extremely moving to hear voices resounding within these walls, the sound of footsteps, the lights showing at the windows...
Sometimes in the evening, lingering in the courtyard listening to the animated voices, our thoughts go to the silent figures who once inhabited it, moving with short hurried steps, brushing past each other with lowered heads, a few whispered words, clasped hands hidden beneath wide sleeves...
Visitors to Spineto, have the same sensations and feel the same sense of awe as we did, emotions that we have endeavoured to maintain.
Today a visit to the Abbey of Spineto represents a chance to meet, study, learn, work together and... experience emotions.
The philosophy of reclamation has been our driving force.
We didn’t want to create something resembling a museum, instead we wanted a place where our own contributions were clearly evident, where our personal touch could be seen side by side with palpable traces of the past.
We like to believe that the flow of ideas, the love, the industriousness and the meditation that were absorbed by the stone walls in ancient times somehow survive today and influence us in the form of positive energy forces.
You become aware of such forces when, whilst working in certain places, you have a feeling of calm, and the silence enables you to concentrate without effort.
Every corner of the Abbey has been reclaimed creating spaces in which to work and reflect.
The spaces are flexible and can be equipped according to personal needs.
The main Conference Hall, a high-tech change of destination for what was once a stable, can accommodate up to 200 people.
You may work using state-of-the-art technology, but a glance through the large windows will immediately bring you into contact with enchanting views of the grounds and surrounding countryside.
In this corner of Tuscany with its gently rolling hills, part of the estate’s 800 hectares of land border directly on the boundless and enchanting Val d’Orcia.
The ancient farmhouses on the estate had fallen into disuse, their walls left to crumble, surrounded by a silence broken only by the sounds of nature.
The Abbey is still surrounded by the same expectant stillness and silence of years gone but the houses have been carefully and lovingly restored to their original splendour thanks to Progetto Campus.
In an innovative way, the activities, meetings and symposiums organized in the Abbey, revive the connection between the farmhouses and the Benedictine Abbey in the past.
Each house has been organized in such a way as to be independent while at the same time having easy access to, and contact with, the Abbey.
The rooms are comfortable and cosy, and to wake up to views and sounds of nature and enjoy a breakfast of delicious local products, is only one of the delights in store.
Some of the farmhouses have rooms suitable for meetings and training courses for up to 50-60 participants.
Progetto Campus is designed for those wishing to participate in: study and research meetings, business meetings, conferences, presentations, training courses, meetings to discuss business strategies, specialization courses, incentive trips, workshops, creative activity workshops, courses for groups interested in such topics as art, culture, the environment, local cuisine and traditions etc.
Visitors soon realize that Spineto is not only a place, it’s more a way of being, a special, diverse way in which to relate to others and ourselves, close to nature in a period in time suspended somewhere between the past and the present. When the stay is over, participants often leave with heavy hearts much as they would at the end of a holiday.