Airbnb is offering one love-struck couple a Valentine’s Day overnight stay at a 13th-century Italian townhouse that has long been a place of romantic pilgrimage.
The pair will spend the night at Casa di Giulietta in Verona, a historic building that has a beautiful balcony and shares several similarities to the description of Juliet’s house in Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet.
What’s more, the couple will sleep in the original bed – ‘Letto di Giulietta’ – used in Zeffirelli’s classic 1960s movie Romeo and Juliet, starring Leonard Whiting and Olivia Hussey.
Casa di Giulietta in Verona – a historic building with a beautiful balcony that shares several similarities to the description of Juliet’s house in Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. Airbnb is offering one love-struck couple the chance to spend the night inside the 13th-century Italian townhouse
The winning couple will sleep in Letto di Giulietta – the original bed used in Zeffirelli’s classic 1960s movie Romeo and Juliet
Classic movie: Leonard Whiting and Olivia Hussey on the Letto di Giulietta bed as Romeo and Juliet
Shakespeare never specified the exact whereabouts of Juliet’s home. However, the building does have a connection to the Cappelletti and Montecchi families, whose names are strikingly similar to the play’s feuding Montagues and Capulets.
The building began life in the 13th century as a family home belonging to the Dal Cappello (or ‘Cappelletti’) family, passing through several hands over the centuries.
Over time, the belief that it was the birthplace of Giulietta Capuleti grew and in 1907 the Municipality of Verona decided to buy a section of the complex.
It has been a museum since the 1930s, but Airbnb, working with an Italian architect and the Municipality of Verona, has transformed it into a sumptuous temporary love nest.
The Letto di Giulietta bed didn’t have to be moved far as it’s one of the museum’s exhibits.
The Letto di Giulietta bed, pictured in the Zeffirelli movie, is a museum exhibit at Casa di Giulietta
The winning couple will be waited on by a personal butler and treated to a romantic candlelit dinner, prepared by two-Michelin-star chef Giancarlo Perbellini, in a glittering dining room filled with crystals, candles and flowers.
The pair will also be given a ‘Romeo and Juliet inspired tour of Verona’ and get to read and reply to Juliet’s love letters.
Thousands of letters, addressed to Juliet, arrive at Casa di Giulietta from lovelorn people all over the world each year.
The decades-old tradition has kept Juliet’s Club, a non-profit organisation, busy as its team of volunteers, known as Juliet’s secretaries, write individual replies to each one.
To stay in Juliet’s house, eligible applicants must write one of these letters to Juliet, sharing their own poignant love story and explaining why they and their partner would be perfect guests.
Federico Sboarina, mayor of Verona Municipality, said: ‘Juliet’s House is the most important museum in the City of Verona, attracting millions of visitors every year.
‘Partnering with Airbnb brings the widely known Shakespearian story of Romeo and Juliet to life in a way never offered before.
The winners will be treated to a romantic candlelit dinner, prepared by two-Michelin-star chef Giancarlo Perbellini, in a glittering dining room filled with crystals, candles and flowers, pictured
‘We are excited to promote our cultural heritage, share traditions that were previously safeguarded, and bring international visibility to the City of Verona.’
Giacomo Trovato, general manager for Italy at Airbnb, added: ‘Every day countless new connections are made across the world by people travelling on Airbnb – creating new friendships and sometimes new love.
‘Since 2008, an estimated one million guests have hosted their weddings on Airbnb.
‘This stay will give one couple the unique chance to celebrate their love in what is possibly the most romantic home in the history of literature.’
To stay in Casa di Giulietta, pictured, eligible applicants must write a letter to Juliet, sharing a poignant love story
Entries for the overnight stay can be submitted at airbnb.com/juliet until 11.59pm EST on February 2, 2020.
Although the stay can only be given to one winner, four other Valentine’s experiences will also be listed on Airbnb with bookable dates in February.
These include a Michelin-starred dinner cooked by Giancarlo Perbellini at his restaurant Casa Perbellini in Verona, a day working as a secretary at Juliet’s Club, replying to Juliet’s letters, a romantic photoshoot in Verona and a romantic Verona food and wine walk.