Posted by: debrakolkka | January 3, 2010

Why Bagni di Lucca?


Our apartment-first floor with the balcony

The most asked question about our house in Italy is why we chose Bagni di Lucca.  I would like to say that we did lots of research over many trips to Italy, but this is not the case.  When we were thinking about buying something overseas I asked an Italan friend for his ideas.  He immediately suggested Lucca.  He said I would like Lucca.

We stopped in Italy for a couple of weeks as part of an around the world trip.  We first went to Venice and then drove to Lucca via Padova and Verona.  We liked Lucca from the first moment and went to  a real estate agent  to look for an apartment inside the walls.  We were shown a couple we liked, in particular a top floor apartment in Puccini’s house  in Via san Paolino.  It was tiny and needed lots of renovations but it had a huge rooftop terrace overlooking Lucca.  We absolutely loved it, but it was beyond what we wanted to pay and we unsure about tackling a renovation with no experience.

We had seen the name Bagni di Lucca several times when we had been looking for information about Lucca so we decided to follow the Serchio River towards the old spa town.  Our first stop was the Bar Italia where we had a delicious coffee and sandwich and first came into contact with Annalisa.  We liked the bar and the tiny Piazza and stood on the bridge to look at the view.  We found that there was a reasonable bus service to Lucca and beyond, we were only 40 kilometres from ski fields in Abetone and not far from the coast.  Florence was close enough for a easy day trip and the surrounding area was gorgeous even in the dead of winter.

On the 1st March 2003, my 50th birthday, we followed an agent up the stairs of a lovely apartment in a wonderful old building near the church in Bagni di Lucca.  The price was right, the apartment was in good condition and everything seemed to be falling into place.  We decided to buy the apartment and began negotiotions with the agent.  All this was in one day.

We returned to Australia eager to procede with the purchase.  We soon realised it would not be possible from a distance, so not long later I went back to the village to hurry things along.  I had very little Italian at this stage and the agent had no English.  In between tortured discussions I went to look at other apartments.  By chance, a property beside the bridge became available.  It was perfect, with a spectacular view over the Piazza and the river.  It was the same price as the other one and in a much better position.  In addition, the agent spoke quite good English and everything became so much easier.

View from the apartment, looking up the river


View from the apartment, looking down the river


We took posession of our apartment beside the Lima in September, requiring another trip  to Italy.  I bought a bed and spent my first night in a very bare bedroom.  Luckily, the previous owners had agreed to leave the kitchen and bathroom fittings which made life a little easier.

My husband and I went to Bagni di Lucca in December for 2 weeks thinking we would be able to furnish the apartment in this time.  Things didn’t go quite to plan and I went back in March for 2 months to complete the task.

We now spend 4 or 5 months a year in the village and love it more each time.  We are very happy with our decision to buy there.  We have been made welcome by the locals and feel at home the minute we arrive.

Another view up the river


View from the bathroom window


Our weather vane





  1. very beautiful. i was in Bagni Di Lucca in 2008 as my grandparents were both from there. would you have any idea how i would find there birth certificates. i have been trying to get my dual citizenship and am having trouble tracking them down. i dont remember seeing any churches in bagni di lucca for baptismal records but is there a office in the city that may have them. any help is more appreciated than you know. just grasping at straws right now. thanks for any help

    • Ciao George,
      I don’t know this, but I do know someone in the village who may. I will try to find out as much as I can.

  2. Debra, you live right by my aunt and uncle. beautiful pictures

  3. […] If you would like to know how we came to choose Bagni di Lucca click here. […]

  4. Thanks for guiding back to this post. i know it’s easy to fall in love with Bagni … I’ve often thought that what if I could move anywhere? Well, it simply strikes a good chord with me. Cheers the joy it’s given you.

  5. Debra, your town seems wonderful and a great blog. Thank you so much for your help. I plan to see Bagni di Lucca when we are there if there is time. I am looking for an apartment to rent at a reasonable rent on a yearly basis, but not yet sure where in Italia to look. Thank you again. Buon giorno.

Leave a Reply


%d bloggers like this: