Casolare Scarani House by Studio Andrew Trotter in Carovigno, Italy

Project: Casolare Scarani House
Architects: Studio Andrew Trotter
Carovigno, Italy
Year: 2023
Photographs by:
Salva López

Casolare Scarani House by Studio Andrew Trotter

In the heart of Puglia, a remarkable transformation story unfolds. Originally a girls’ school with a unique blend of masseria and villa styles, Casolare Scarani had been abandoned for decades until a friend’s discovery. When the architects decided not to make it their own, the Coleman family stepped in, with Ian convincing Maree to purchase it sight unseen.

The restoration preserved the exterior’s beautiful patina while reviving the interior with lime plaster and reclaimed stones. The old garage became a charming kitchen, the donkey house turned into a laundry room, and new en-suites were added. The result is a splendid blend of history and modernity—a true Puglian gem.

Many years ago, a friend in Barcelona had the idea to move to Puglia. She showed me a few houses online to see what I thought about them. Maybe a year or so later, we passed a house while driving toward Carovigno, and I realized that it was one of the houses she had shown me. The house was beautiful, old, with so much character, and not too big. In the countryside, you usually find small lamias, which are stone sheds for the local landowners to store equipment; or very large masserias, where the affluent landowners would have once lived.

It was quite unusual to come across a building that had the style of a masseria, but the size of a small villa. We found out that the building was originally a school for girls, and had quite a history with the locals. It was abandoned in the early 1960s, and we lovingly brought it back to life. This one was a gem.

At the time we were thinking about other projects, but we decided not to purchase it for ourselves so, when our friends and clients, the Coleman family, started to search for a house, we immediately showed them this one. Actually, we showed it to Ian, as Maree was in Australia at the time and a month later COVID hit. From the photos, Ian persuaded Maree, and they bought it without her seeing it. More than a year later, when we had already started to renovate the property, Maree saw the house for the first time. Luckily she fell in love with it, as we knew she would. Nine months later, Casolare Scarani was finished.

Regarding the renovation process, we tried as hard as possible to leave the exterior patina where we could. Together with Ian and Maree, we spent days scraping off years of flaky paint, to reveal the beautiful stone of the portico. The inside needed to be fully plastered, so we brought in an artisan who makes his own lime plaster and lime paints. All the old stones were repositioned, and we also added a new chianca to the floors that matched the old ones perfectly.

The old garage was turned into the kitchen with its courtyard out the back. The stone oven was repaired, and the donkey house was turned into the laundry room. We also added two new blocks to the back of the house which became two en-suites for the two downstairs bedrooms, while the two rooms on the upper floor were made into the master suite with its own bathroom. The living room has beautiful star-vaulted ceilings and a large fireplace. The dining room is in the old stable, with the kitchen to the side.

Studio Andrew Trotter


Tags: Carovigno, classic, exterior, historical, interior, Italy, Studio Andrew Trotter, traditional

Author: Fidan Jovanov


A young enthusiast with a passion for home decor and architecture, I love writing articles that inspire and guide readers in transforming their spaces into stylish, functional, and beautiful environments.


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