Rosalba, wife and mother of two children is also a talented entrepreneurial woman in the tourism sector. A success that took shape a few years ago, thanks to her intuition and the ability demonstrated in interpreting the most genuine tourist vocation of Valle d’Itria. Rosalba not only fully understood the great potential of this territory but also managed to put it into practice the most authentic way to manage a Trulli Resort together with a group of loyal and enthusiastic collaborators.
The family property has been beautifully restored, tastefully furnished, equipped with all the comforts and embellished with those small details that have made it a jewel set in a land dotted with olive trees, vines and orchards in the vicinity of Locorotondo.
Leonardo Trulli Resort, managed by Rosalba Cardone, remains open all year, winning independently the challenge of deseasonalising the tourist offer of Valle d’Itria. Former sailor, sportswoman, and runner, Rosalba immediately understood that a successful off-season tourist offer could only count on gastronomy and sports activity. But it was not only that. She was able to set up and manage the Resort in a passionately eco-friendly style. Another happy intuition of the young entrepreneur of Locorotondo that five years ago, from the time of its inauguration, spontaneously anticipated the concept of ecotourism that has become so popular today.
The gardens are perennially cultivated and their fruits and vegetables are used in the kitchen. Often the guests of the Resort enter the grounds in the morning to hand-pick from the plants what they would like to eat for lunch or dinner and bring them to the kitchen where they can speak directly with the chef, Francesco Cataldi, happy to interpret and fulfill their wishes. And he does so by taking inspiration from the authentic local recipes, those of the ancient traditional cuisine.
The guests are delighted by all this: the experience at the table is unique. A full involvement that starts early morning with the harvest of the products of the earth directly from the plant and ends at the table savouring the most authentic dishes of Valle d’Itria that literally leave wordless who is certainly not used to those flavours.
But the offer of Leonardo Trulli Resort is not only excellent in accommodation and satisfaction of the palate. Rosalba thought that it would have been a shame to let their guests go without revealing them those little wonderful recipes handed down from mother to daughter! And this idea turned into Cooking Class, always participated with great enthusiasm: a success that currently allows Rosalba to host groups of foreign tourists even during autumn and winter.
Everything that is cooked at the lessons obviously ends up on the table, a table that is animated not only by the colorful multilingual dissertations about food and ingredients but also thanks to the substantial contribution of the excellent local wine that perfectly matches the chicory with beans, cold meats and local dairy products.
The resort takes its name from the cousin of the father of Rosalba, Leonardo, returned to Locorotondo after having lived an impossible love story in Udine: he, the son of peasants, had fallen madly in love with a General’s daughter. Although she was attracted by that handsome man from the south, the beautiful young girl had to give up the idea of taking him as her spouse because of the veto imposed by her family who considered Leonardo’s peasant origins inappropriate for the daughter of a senior officer. So Leonardo, with his heart broken and still full of love for that beautiful woman from Udine, decided to return to his beautiful round and white village standing on the the hill of Valle d’Itria.
He poured all that love, that he did not have the opportunity to express to that girl, into his property consisting of some fields and gardens, and a group of trulli. Then he decided to build a beautiful house for himself in Art Nouveau style. And this love still lingers in the Resort, you can feel it in every corner, in the alcoves of the trulli so warm and welcoming, in the gardens and the fields so well taken cared of.
Each room has its own privacy and has a small private garden that overlooks the surrounding grounds dotted with olive trees and aromatic plants. The outdoor swimming pool, open all year and filled with salt water is surrounded by a beautiful rose garden and lavender plants. A paradise of perfumes, flavors and emotions that make the stay at the Leonardo Trulli Resort an engaging and unforgettable experience. Guests can also taste how the life in a Contrada goes, appreciating the quietness but also the chats within good neighbors. Even today, as it was once, it is not unusual to come across nearby friends who brings Rosalba few freshly baked taralli or some freshly squeezed olive oil coming straight from the mill and to taste on a fresh piece of bread: values of a past time that some areas of the Valle d ‘Itria have been able to maintain authentic.
Equally authentic is the Leonardo Trulli Resort, an admirable example of hotel management conceived and ran totally in a eco-friendly manner with a lot of passion and ability: a beautiful example of local successful entrepreneurship.