This luminous, sophisticated 21st-century country house was built with the study of sundials in mind; a sun compass at its core. Elegance, comfort and appreciation of the surrounding landscape were also key. Nothing jars inside where vibrant colours – sky blue, olive green, broom yellow – mimic nature, or outside where Arabella has worked her designer magic. English-style but including native aromatics like lavender and rosemary, mingling with roses climbing from huge terracotta pots; the garden is a delight. So is the infinity pool with glorious views, the pool-house with shady portico and kitchen. The smart house kitchen is seriously equipped; breakfast here and dine in the circular dining room. Relax in the library or on plump red sofas by the fireplace in the living room, before turning in to lovely big bedrooms with super linen and antique furniture against pastel walls. Coordinated bathrooms are luxurious too with built-in oversized showers. You may be loath to head back, through olive groves and along the ancient Salaria to Rome, an hour away. Flexible owners run B&B here from September- April.