We are in Castelvecchio, in the ancient heart of the Civita, the primordial core of the city, overlooking the Sassi. Once occupied by the Roman “Castrum”, it is now home to the paternal residence where I like to welcome and accommodate the inquiring visitor who wishes to breathe in the city’s millenary history, admire its splendid sceneries, dive in a magical aura.
Comfortable and original surroundings will be at your disposal, the discovery of a new city intertwined with the feeling of warmth and familiarity of a real household. Antica Civita is this: images, sensations, atmospheres preserved in a place where the life of an enchanting city began and still thrives.
You will be greeted in Civita Castelvecchio, a spacious hall culminating in a high cross vault with tufa lights, souvenirs from my father’s trip to China, a 19th century pianoforte belonging to my sister Francesca, my favourite enveloping and well rounded living room, the shot chessboard I gifted to my family.See the Gallery
From a warm welcome to delicacies with CIVITA DEL GUSTO where, on a table facing the Murgia, austere and imposing before your eyes, you can taste the region’s typical flavours, from the jams to the chocolate cream, from the maiatic oil to Matera’s traditional baked goods, from tomatoes to local eggs and bacon, seasonal and dried fruit.See the Gallery
Civita Idris is one of the two rooms where you can relive in intimacy the sensations felt while crossing the residence’s threshold.
A wide room with terracotta floor (Matera praises a renowned brick tradition), a very high rough tufa cross vault and three spectacular views, two of them facing Sasso Caveoso with the splendid Madonna dell’Idris in sight, the other one outlooking Castello Tramontano, the town hills and Città del Piano.
A winding, elegant leather king bed, an antique restored wine cellar, an armchair of our best artisan tradition and local handcrafted lamps all concur in making the ambience all the more inviting and warm.
In the marble bathroom, a shower box with a special corner view. Complete necessaire for your personal care.
It is a real suite.
Its refined bed seems to have been conceived for this sophisticated ambience, with its parquet floor, a rough tufa cloister vault, a sofa handcrafted by local artisans, a golden enlightened disc and a sight that is almost natural painting, a dizzy view of the Murgia and the Gravina, the Sasso Caveoso and Madonna dell’Idris.
A few more steps and… you will conquer the pick of the Sassi, a unique roof terrace from which you can enjoy a 360 degree panorama, from the Murgia to the Sasso Caveoso, from the sinuosity of the Gravina to the majesty of the Castello Tramontano, from the Sasso Barisano, with its monumental Church of Sant’Agostino, to the town hills, from Palazzo dell’Annunziata to Lanfranchi to Casalnuovo and so on.
You and the city, alone.
We are on the crag of the Civita that towers over the Sasso Barisano to north and the Sasso Caveoso to south. The area of Castelvecchio, where we are situated, together with the adjacent Cathedral, is one of the oldest in Matera; there, prehistoric relics related to transition from the Neolithic to the Bronze Age have been unearthed. We are in the heart of the “Castrum” of Matera, centre of the Old Town.
It was the Roman military settlement that shaped this territory, giving it the typical structure of an encampment characterized by a decumanus and boundary walls outlining a square plan. In the Guidonis Geographica, the city is called “Castra Hannibalis”, probably referring to lost ancient chronicles according to which, when Metaponto allowed Hannibal to stay in its territory, the African leader’s stronghold had been located on that site overhanging the Gravina defined by Erisi, geographer of King Ruggero, as “Munitissima Urbs”.
All the historical events concerning the city of Matera have unfolded at the foot of those walls; particularly, in 1042, the norman nobility appointed William of Hauteville, also known as Iron Arm, first count of Apulia. Afterwards, Robert Guiscard started the Cathedral’s construction, expanding the primary urbanistic scheme of the city until he enclosed the whole promontory of the “Civita”.