Villa Agape

VILLA AGAPE (presently also referred to as Villa della Duchessa Anna) is located in the hills south of Florence, a few kilometers from the centre of town. The villa stands on a steep hill overlooking Florence and is surrounded by beautiful and well-maintained gardens.


HISTORY. Villa Agape (agape being the classical Greek word for love) dates back to the middle ages when it was a simple country-house. In 1472, the owner of the villa, Bartolommeo di Matteo, sold it to the St. Paolo di Pinti nuns. In 1547, Jacopo di Raffaello del Nente bought it from the nuns. Forty-five years later the villa was purchased by the Arrighetti family.


Portrait of Galileo GalileiAndrea Arrighetti, who was a senator and a close friend of the famous astronomer Galileo Galilei, lived in the villa for many years. It is claimed that Galileo stayed with his friend at Villa Agape for long periods of time.

In 1948 Villa Agape was purchased by Duchess Anna D’Orleans, widow of the Earl D’Aosta, who bequeathed the property to the nuns of the Suore Stabilite nella Carità.


The nuns run the premises as a pensione with bed and breakfast and an evening meal if desired.


RDining roomooms are well furnished and comfortable. The refurbished guest facilities blend well with the original architectural features of the interior, such as the ornate stone staircases and fireplaces. The timber vaulted ceilings create spaces filled with light. There is a library and a sitting room for the guests.

THE GARDENS. The traditional Tuscan gardens that surround the villa were refurbished and greatly improved by Duchess Anna D’Orleans. She restored the parterres and adorned the area with statues and fountains. At the back of villa is a small chapel with a loggia, where guests can spend some peaceful time in meditation. The gardens are well maintained by the nuns.

For guests, Villa Agape is an unspoiled sanctuary where they can stay at a reasonable price. The gardens are open for guest only, but those who love beautiful gardens can visit them by writing or phoning beforehand and offering a small donation to the order.


The address of Villa Agape is Viadella Torre de Gallo 8, 50125 Florence. Telephone 055 2337012. There is free car parking in the grounds of the villa. It is an easy walk down the hill to the centre of Florence, but unless you have the agility of a mountain goat a taxi is recommended for the return trip. The nearest bus stop to the centre is a ten-minute walk away from the villa. The nuns close the premises at 11.30 pm so it is not a place for late night ravers.

For more information try or search Suore Stabilite nella Carità. Read also comments from guests on Trip Advisor.