Thinking of having a destination wedding? Or perhaps you’re simply in need of an absurdly beautiful, restorative respite from the working world—well then, Masseria Potenti is just the place. This whitewashed masterpiece of a farmhouse swathed in flowing linens, fragrant citrus and vibrant prickly pear cactus will have you shedding your stressed-out skin the moment you arrive (even if you’re the bride-to-be—we guarantee).
A Place to Repose
Hidden away within over 300 acres of sprawling vineyards, olive groves and Mediterranean thicket lay this 16th-century farmhouse in the southeastern region of Italy called Puglia (or Apulia, as it’s referred to in English); just picture the boot heel of Italy and you’re there. Owned and run by a Pugliese-turned-Milanese family of four, the Masseria came to life as a retreat for family and friends from the north—now welcoming “friends” from all over the world. The rolling landscape beyond the house leads down to the Ionian Sea where you can escape for a day of bronzing and a swim in the azure waters. That is, until you’re beckoned back to the cool climes of the terrazza and the intoxicatingly inviting poolside patio. Three words for you: canopied lounge chairs.
A Relaxed Rhythm of Life
In keeping with its historical roots, the cool, plaster-walled rooms and suites have a spare but slightly regal feel, furnished in elegant antiques, deluxe linens and fresh flowers. Outside each room is a private garden, and if you’re lucky, an overhanging lattice full of fertile grapevines. The intentionally slow-paced day here begins with a lavish breakfast spread of homemade pastries and cakes along with a variety of jams made from the Masseria’s own fruit.
Breakfast is not the only delicious indulgence of the day; the field-to-fork restaurant on the premises offers lunch and dinner as well, for hotel guests and anyone at all. Sourcing ingredients from the surrounding countryside, local farmers and the grounds itself, the colorful cuisine here is a true celebration of fresh Italian fare—all topped off by the estate-made olive oil and wine, of course.
Gather Your Gang
There’s hardly a more joyous, welcoming or festive place to gather for a special occasion. Walk down the aisle amidst the muslin-covered orangery, on the Moorish-inspired porch or under the columned portico—wherever you choose to say your vows, this setting will feel like the perfect beauty-bathed complement to your magical day. The Masseria can accommodate 62 overnight guests and up to 250 diners for a custom feast. Whether it’s your nuptials, a landmark birthday or a bachelorette bash you’re observing, this lush, tradition-steeped and tranquil hideaway is a sure bet.
Learning the Land
Lest you get tired of lazing by the pool (not likely), the Masseria offers an array of daily activities. Join Maria Grazia (the gorgeous matriarch, head chef and design mastermind of the house) in the cucina for an in-depth cooking class, or head down to the cellar for a wine, cheese and olive oil tasting. For you outdoor enthusiasts, go on an organized nature walk to learn and explore the local Mediterranean flora. And for those looking to simply find some Zen, hit the hammam or your yoga mat for some quiet solitude.
Photography by Mango Red Studios