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The Sardinian Villa that Once Hosted Popes and Romanovs

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Sited on a breathtaking spit of rock that juts out into the Mediterranean, this villa, completed in 1880, was built by an Italian count to delight his English-born wife. The count's brother was later named "Chamberlain for the Pope Pius XI and then Pius XII," which brought a flood of society types to the castle-like seaside dwelling in the Sardinian town of Alghero, including Romanov princesses and Italian royalty. During the World War II, aviator and writer Antoin de Saint Exupéry, author of The Little Prince, visited the villa. The count's descendants sold their magnificent home in 1959. Since then successive owner's have added a top-story and operated the house as a 25-room hotel, complete with elaborate spa, helipad, and private beach. Now, the count's pride and joy, along with 4.5 acres of landscaped grounds, is listed again, but, in that grand European tradition of secrecy, the price is only available upon request.
· Outstanding Sardinia Seafront Property [Sotheby's]
· Villa Las Tronas Hotel & Spa [official site]