Posted by: Debra Kolkka | February 16, 2012

The latest on our house in Vergemoli

One of the first things I did after arriving in Bagni di Lucca was go to our building site in Vergemoli to check the progress of our stone house. There has been lots of snow in the area, but the road was OK. The snow makes for some very dramatic scenery along the way to Vergemoli.







These photos were all taken from the car. I was not driving.
There was more snow to navigate on the way to the house. Normally we would drive to the house from the village, but we were unsure of the snowy road so we decided to walk the last bit.


Adriano and Nila lead the way.



Nila loves her visits to the house. The snow doesn’t bother her at all.


The house is visible from the path in winter when the trees are bare.


Here is some riveting stuff for you. Our first stop was the workroom at the back of the house. The heating system has been installed, and the pump to bring water from our spring and some other very interesting bits and pieces.



We have solar panels on the roof to provide heating as well as a pellet heater to feed the under floor heating and the general heating system. It should be a very comfortable house in winter.

The internal walls are completed and we are now waiting for the windows to be installed. They are waiting impatiently in the factory for the truck to come to bring them to their new lovely home.


The steps are being built now. I was disinclined to use the ladder to the top floor.


Adriano forged ahead to take measurements for the tiles.


One of the upstairs bedrooms.


Looking from the main bedroom. I love these beautiful window spaces with the chestnut and granite.


The view from the bathroom window.

The house is looking great. I can’t wait to get into it to start decorating.


This is the back door. We saved and rebuilt the gorgeous volcanic stone arched doorway.



I can’t get enough of the view from the house.




The required measurements were all taken and we set off back to the car.


Then it was back down the mountain and a quick stop at Paolo’s gelateria.




For those of you are new to the blog you can see the progress from a pile of rocks to our lovely stone house. Look in the category – New house in Vergemoli.

We are hoping it will be ready to rent/sell by spring.


  1. Your house is looking gorgeous! Congratulations Deb! Rose

    • We are very happy with the progress.

  2. Wonderful place… it would be a pleasure to live there.

    • It is going to be difficult to sell it, but that was always our intention, so I have tried not to get attached to it.

  3. Just love all the stone!

    • The stones were gathered from the land around the house. I love that!!

  4. Your house is beautiful and quaint! My husband would love the wooden ceiling, he did ours in cedar! Thanks for these lovely photos.

    • Chestnut is the wood that is used in this area, because there is so much of it growing in the hills.

  5. Now that is a very beautiful and decent house! With that stunning mountain view I believe the house gives you what a house should: peace and comfort.

    • The setting of the house is wondeful. It faces south, so there is sun on the property all day.

  6. Such a beautiful house in such a gorgeous setting! You’re not tempted to go and live there yourselves?

    • It is tempting to live there, but we love our place in Bagni di Lucca and we cannot keep both.

  7. It would be hard not to get attached to that house, it looks like it’s coming along perfectly. And that view … ! Paradise.
    ps – I’m glad you weren’t driving whilst taking those photos from your car 🙂

    • It is difficult not to become attached and I think that will be worse when it is finished and looking even more beautiful.

  8. The house is looking fabulous Debra. Won’t you miss those amazing views if you sell it?

    • We always intended to sell it. In the current climate it may not sell quickly, which is fine. We would like to spend some time there before it goes.

  9. You are building a house? I had no idea, how fantastic and it looks glorious, those big spaces, that ceiling!! I also love the deep window sills.. You must be so excited! c

    • The walls are very thick. There is a brick layer, then insulation, then the stone layer on the outside. If you go back to the beginning you can see what we started with and look also for our handsome builders.

  10. It must be so exciting to see your new house come together. The views from it look absolutely amazing.

    • We have had a dream run so far. Everyone has done a great job and the site is incredible.

  11. Simply amazing! I wish I was in the position to buy your gorgeous house.The views are just spectacular. Good to see a photo of you!

    • Somebody is going to love this house as much as we do. It is in a national park, so nobody can build anywhere near us.

  12. Good God, that house is gorgeous, Deb! Wish I could help decorate–how fun that will be!

    • Why don’t you slide on over? I want to keep it fairly traditional. We chose the terracotta tiles for the floor today. That was a compromise!!! The ones I really liked were handmade pentagonal shaped, but they were extremely expensive, so I have settled on hand made rectangular ones. The bathroom tiles I chose turned out to be Gianni Versace and the most expensive ones in the shop…..back to the drawing board.

  13. The house is looking great, Debra. Congratulations!

    • The house is progressing very well. The windows will be delivered tomorrow. That will make a huge difference. The workmen will be able to work up there without freezing.

      • I’m very glad for them. It must be very difficult to work with freezing temperatures and empty houses under construction feel even colder than outdoors. Lots of snow in the area. I do hope it will start warming up soon. This is really unusual; however, the cold spell has affected the whole of Europe.

  14. it is beautiful Debra… a true haven

    • We have our own spring on the land – what a bonus!

  15. Every bit as stunning as you and Jim had imagined when you first saw ‘the pile of rocks’ .Well done to Adriano and all those clever italian tradesmen who have worked on this project. Love the stonework and those marvelous wide window ledges. Will look forward to visiting the house in April when I arrive .

    • Of course, we may put a paint brush in your hand.

  16. Wonderful to see the progress and the details. I can hardly wait until I’m able to show progress on ours! In a fiscal pause at the moment…makes me very impatient.

    • It is a bit of a money pit. We are over budget, but we expected this to an extent.

  17. The house is looking fabulous Deb. Has come a long waymsince I saw it and the depth of the windows sets off those marvellous views beautifully. guess it’s a bit cold for a winter shot of the buff builders??!!

    • There were no builders there at all, shirtless or otherwise, but it will happen.

  18. Love the house progress, and the windows are gorgeous. The stone arch doorway is perfect. How exciting. Have fun decorating.
    I like Alison’s idea of an update on the buff builders but I guess we should wait until it is warm again.

    • Yes, we don’t want the poor chaps to get cold. Decorating is going to be fun. My linen curtains are coming along. On these cold days it is good to sit inside doing things like this.

  19. It looks lovely and just waiting for your touch

    • I am very keen to get in there and start work.

  20. Deb, it looks AWESOME !!!!!!!!!!

    Mike Makras

    • Would you and Kellie like a lovely stone house in the mountains of Tuscany?

  21. Hi Deb, Nila looks happy and well. She has great adventures.
    Thank you for the lovely photos. I am in Tassie at the moment. Lucca and Lake Garda next year, I hope.

    Cheers Judy

    • I included Nila for you. She loves her visits to Vergemoli.

  22. Your house is looking fantastic! How exciting to see how far it has progressed!

    • We are delighted with the progress. I can’t wait to see the windows and doors in place.

  23. It is GORGEOUS…but that has to be one of the scariest roads in the world. I’d come willingly, but I’d never get my daughter up…

    • I have driven it a few times by myself now and it isn’t too bad. The views make it worthwhile and Vergemoli is a gorgeous village.

  24. The house is really coming along and look amazing. The views are to die for. Can;t wait to see how you will decorate the inside.

    • We have ordered the terracotta tiles for the floor and soon we will look for a kitchen.

  25. Rustic chic. Lovely Debra! You’re a woman of taste…Jx

    • I think it is going to look pretty good when it is finished.

  26. Gasp!! What a gorgeous view and work in progress. WOW!

    • We are very happy with our stone house.

  27. Wow! The house is looking stunning. I can’t wait to see your decorations!

    • It is going to be fun decorating the house.

  28. Vergemoli and gelato – oh, and let’s not forget the snowy landscape – gee whiz I’m sooo glad I’m sitting here in hot, humid Brisbane with the vacuum cleaner staring at my back.

  29. How wonderful! When will the house be done? What a view!!!

    • We are hoping the house will be finished by April/May. I would like to rent it for the summer.

  30. It’s looking stunning Debra. I love seeing how the house has come along. That window from the main bedroom…wow. I hope someone places a desk there and has an inclination to write, I know that’s where I would be.

    • A desk under that window sounds like a great idea. I will try to find a little one. I can’t wait to get a good look at the top floor. I love the ceiling up there.

  31. The views look breathtakingly beautiful. I love the fact that the bathroom has a great view too!

    • I love a bathroom with an open window and a view.

  32. it is simply spectacular. one of these days i hope to see it in person. it will happen.
    very happy for you. what a life dream. and that is what life is made of. dreams.

    • The house will be ready quite soon we hope.

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