One Bedroom, Sea-view Home with Roof Terrace in Picturesque Hilltop Village
Casa Rosalinda is a two-storey, end-terrace cottage with one bedroom downstairs, a kitchen-diner on the upper floor and a priceless roof terrace. Set against the backdrop of the beautiful Madonie Natural Park, it offers a chance to become part of the life of a quintessentially Sicilian community.
The roof terrace to the rear that offers a view you and your guests will never forget, an affordable price tag and only a modest amount of work is needed to be done to turn this into the perfect one-bedroom holiday home in Sicily. Casa Rosalinda is going to make the right buyer incredibly happy for a lifetime of regular visits or a long, relaxed retirement in the sun.
The front door of this characterful sea-view home with roof terrace leads into a short hallway, which brings you to the bedroom. A large room, about 20m2, opens onto a narrow balcony with a fantastic sea view. Another corridor connects to a little bathroom, currently fitted with a miniature tub and shower attachment.
Up the marble-finished staircase, the whole of the interior of the top floor is given to an L-shaped, open plan kitchen-dining room, currently unfitted. This large flexible space features a traditional built-in oven, an antique which you will certainly want to preserve in any refurbishment. The room and is kept bright and airy by a window to the front and a glazed door to the rear. The former overlooks the street to the front of Casa Rosalinda, while the former gives you a glimpse of the fabulous roof terrace.
This terrace is, in many ways, the star attraction of the entire property. Of medium size, measuring around 6m2, it is nonetheless big enough to accommodate a small dining table and chairs. If you prefer to leave it as a sun deck, you could fit a couple of loungers in. However you decide to furnish it, you will be stunned by the view, which from this higher level is now absolutely unbeatable.
Taking in more than ten kilometres of Tyrrhenian coastline at a single sweep, the north-east-facing platform is bathed in sun throughout the morning and much of the afternoon. With the green slopes of the Madonie dropping down to the blue water below, the spectacular panorama of natural colours will never fail lift the soul. On a clear day it is possible to see the volcanic archipelago of the Aeolian Islands, a full fifty kilometres out to sea.
Underfoot, this beautiful space is finished with a smart terracotta floor tile. The handrail is a smartly painted wrought iron and the smooth plaster of the outer wall has been recently repainted.
The house is completed by a small basement space, underground and accessed down a fixed staircase from the entrance hall. There is a little storage room here, although this receives no natural light.
Casa Rosalinda is found close to the eastern edge of the inspiring hilltop town of Pollina in the Madonie Natural Park. This ancient village was once a Greek settlement, which died out to be replaced by an early modern community built in the fourteenth century by the Count Ventimiglia, one of the great leaders of feudal Sicily.
Modern Pollina, which we have long considered one of the richest hunting grounds for the best value real estate in Sicily (along with the nearby village of Gratteri), has a surprisingly active population of nearly three thousand residents, although many of these are distributed across the surrounding countryside and the little frazione of Finale, some six hundred metres below the hilltop hamlet, at sea level.
Within just a couple of minutes’ walk of your front door you will find the ruins of the old Ventimiglia castle, now partly converted into an astronomical observatory. Directly underneath this tower, a remarkable open-air amphitheatre has been created out of the very hillside rock itself. The hills receding into the distance create a unique natural backdrop that seems to stretch on forever. In the summer months a diverse programme of music, dance and theatre takes place, delighting both locals and visitors of all ages.
On a more practical level, you will find all the shops you need for day-to-day life. There is a small supermarket, a chemist, a baker, butcher and fishmonger. Fruit and vegetables, all locally grown, of course, can be bought directly on the doorstep thanks to the small cart which makes its way around the cobbled streets of the village every morning.
Down at sea level, you are just a stone’s throw away from the legendary beach town of Cefalù, perhaps Sicily’s most iconic small town. Here, two kilometres of perfect golden sand lead to a wonderfully preserved Norman old town, where the cathedral that defines the skyline is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The main north coast highway runs through the lower part of the municipality of Pollina, connecting you to Palermo, Sicily’s great capital, in the west and Messina in the east. Along the way to Messina you can stop at Milazzo and take a boat out to the Aeolians, or once you reach the city itself you can cross the narrow strait which separates Sicily from the Italian peninsula. Or why not turn south, to explore the great city of Catania, the towering natural beauty of Mount Etna or the baroque towns of the Val de Noto?
There is certainly some renovation work to think about here, although we have certainly seen many properties in need of far more comprehensive overhauls. The first priority when the ink is dry on the sale of Casa Rosalinda is going to be to take a look at the roof. This rather elderly structure will have to be extensively repaired in order to protect what lies beneath. Our surveyors have estimated that around €15,000 will need to be spent on this.
Once this has been completed, further weather-proofing will come in the form of new windows. Inside, the electrical system will need to be fully replaced with a modern and safer alternative. For this you will want to budget around €5,000.
The top floor terrace is in good condition, after a recent refurbishment, but during this work some water was allowed to enter the ceiling of the bedroom on the first floor. Although this has done no structural damage – the floors and ceilings of the property are all in good condition, this plaster will obviously need to be replaced.
The bathroom will certainly need to be redone from scratch, and a kitchen fitted. This is going to depend on your tastes and preferences, of course, but perhaps around €8-13,000 should be factored into your calculations.
After that, spending will be discretionary. It would be wonderful to enlarge the door out onto the roof terrace, with a long glazed wall opening up the whole kitchen-living space to the lush panorama beyond. There is also some obvious room to neaten up the exterior of the house, especially the front fascia.
Taking only the essentials into account, it feels to us as though your very own sea-view house with roof terrace could be very well presented with an investment of about €40,000 beyond the purchase price. If you were able to spend extra to take it to the level of a really beautiful, dare we even say, luxurious holiday home, the returns you would see in the eventual resale price could be spectacular.
Remember there is also possibility to recoup much of your investment in the form of incredible tax breaks if you decide to relocate to the island and establish residency here. For advice on this, the practicalities of moving to Sicily or any other aspects of the sale, please drop us an email or pick up the phone today. Our friendly, English-speaking team are waiting to help.