Tag Archives: renovating

Our Renovation in Tuscany, and the Most Important Person in the World


Many of you know that we are renovating a medieval fortress in Tuscany. More accurately, the Lunigiana, which is in northern Tuscany. The process of renovating a 7000 square foot ancient building in Italy is not for the faint of heart. Let me add here that we have had property here on the Italian Riviera for 12 years, so we had bit of an introduction to how the process works with that renovation.

Having said this, my best advice is to have an experienced designer or architect guide you through the entire process. Just like it’s important to have a qualified Notiao guide you through the process of purchasing your property.

When renovating, the most important person in your world is your Geometra!

Definition of a Geometra (Gee-o-me-tra)  or Surveyor:
Qualified professional to perform measurements of land, building code surveys, etc. Sometimes they design the project, they oversee management and the supervision of modest civil constructions.

Your Geometra will pull all of your permits, advise you about picking your general contractor, and guide you through the entire renovation process from start to finish. His main function in your life is to be the liaison between the building authorities in your community and you.

Our Geometra, Marco, is a great guy. My best friend, (I usually call him my Gubby or gay husband) Forrest, is our designer on this project;he has worked with Marco for many years.

Besides designing our flat 12 years ago, Forrest has worked as a designer overseeing projects for clients, and he owns 3 ancient houses in the countryside himself that he has renovated. So he’s experienced in all the ins and outs of renovating in Italy. Believe me, you want someone that’s experienced. Renovating in it Italy is overwhelmingly complicated.


Yesterday we met with Marco and the contractor of choice. We scoured the property and talked about possible solutions to endless little issues. We went over the plans and discussed timelines and budgets.

The thing I love about Italy is the casual nature of things, but when meeting with your geometra there is nothing casual about the experience. I think we are all on the same page at this point.

But there are still many decisions to be made, so stay tuned! xx

La Fortezza

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