Tuscany's best kept-secret: the Maremma coast

The Maremma, just over an hour from Pisa and 90 minutes north of Rome, is already loved by Italian holidaymakers - and now British second-home buyers are discovering this rugged coastline.

Nice and easy: year-round holiday homes with sea views

The French city of Nice has long held a special place in British hearts. A favourite holiday spot since the 18th century, by the turn of the 20th century it was so loved by Queen Victoria and her aristocracy that the coastal boulevard, planted with mimosa and palm trees, was named the Promenade des Anglais.

Italian interior design secrets

Buying an Italian home is only the beginning - the best part is styling it up with the work of talented local craftspeople, discovers Cathy Hawker

Italy's country estates

Italy has a countless number of country estates that have been left to crumble, but taking on a major restoration project is not for the faint-hearted

Living the Italian dream

A shared vision restores the Reschio estate in Umbria into an idyllic and exclusive second home retreat for the wealthy

Search in the sun

Cathy Hawker advises on how and where to buy a home abroad this year

Buying in Italy - Factsheet

From dramatic coastal resorts to iconic cities with fine regional cooking and classy designer goods in the mix, the Italian lifestyle is very alluring. Less alluring are the stories of the country’s torturous bureaucracy. Forewarned is forearmed so here’s what you need to know before you head off for la dolce vita