Trip to Aci Trezza

A friend from work, Mario, wanted to show Jess and I a house in a town called Aci Trezza (Pronounced: Ahh Chee Trrret Zza).  He said this is theeee house that we needed to rent. He constantly emphasized that it has a postcard view.  Jess and I were excited to start the house hunting process and see a new town that is nearby.

Let the house hunters international begin!

View from the 1st floor terrace. Cyclopes Islands

More view… down the coast


We couldn’t believe this place.  We were not expecting anything like this when we decided to move out here.  Much bigger than anticipated and the views of the Med are ridiculous.  Its very surprising how far your money goes out here compared to San Diego in terms of housing.  From my experience as a California real estate agent in San Diego this property would rent for at least triple what they are asking here.  We were going in with a lot lower expectations because of the differences in culture, the Euro conversion rate, and from watching house hunters international…ha.

Ive always thought that the San Diego real estate prices are out of whack, this just helps confirm that idea.

Looking back I should have taken more pictures, but the view was just stunning.  Here is a link on the story behind the Cyclopes Islands.  Mario gave us a rundown on the story and I recognized it.  The cliffs notes version for you skimmers out there is that Polythemus the one eyed giant of the island threw the rocks (islands because he was so big) at a fleeing Ulysses who escaped before he was eaten by Polythemus.   I read Homer’s Odyssey in my Greek Mythology class that I took at MSU.   When I took the class it was because it had the most girls in the classroom of my elective options ( You gotta do what you gotta do when your in lame engineering school), but now its coming in handy out here with all the history surrounding us.  That class would have been a lot more interesting if I was surrounded by the scenes of the stories.

Mario definitely delivered, but we wanted to follow through on the housing search and look at some more places in different areas.  We start our official housing tours this upcoming weekend starting in a town called Trecastagni.

13 Replies to “Trip to Aci Trezza”

  1. Actually, the house is located in Aci Catena which are the hills that overlook the town of Aci Trezza…I think the views might even be better earlier in the day…so I will post those in my blog! 🙂

  2. “Ive always thought that the San Diego real estate prices are out of whack, this just helps confirm that idea”

    Yes, but you get what you pay for… Sicily’s cities are actually cheaper than San Diego… you know why? Because Sicily’s cities are BY FAR more blighted and dirty than San Diego (which offers better urban standards)… don’t you agree? 🙂

    1. Thanks for the comment!

      I definitely agree on the urban standards with regards to trash and graffiti in some towns of Sicily. Its sad because the historic buildings and scenery are so beautiful. In a Sicilian’s mind he would not spend the time to clean up trash in the street when he could be living “la dolce vita.” 🙂

      We have found that the standards are definitely town specific after seeing other towns in Sicily such as Taormina, Ragusa Ibla, etc. In San Diego you have a bit of the same kind of “regionality.” After living in downtown San Diego for 3+ years its not that far off…especially with the crazy hobos downtown that are non existent here. I remember many nights awake in downtown San Diego listening to crack heads talking/yelling to themselves. ha

      We also lived in Point Loma Nazarene area, which was very nice and clean in comparison… but after living in both places the dramatic price difference is ridiculous.

      If you were to take our Sicilian house (quick stats: 4 floors, 4 bed 4 bath, 3200+ sqft, 3 floors with large terraces with panoramic views from mainland Italy to Siracusa) and place the house in San Diego it would go for at least triple the price here probably even quadruple.
      This is based on my experiences as an agent pricing the fixer uppers with a “peek a boo” view in coastal San Diego.

      Economically the fact that they have an unemployment rate more than double ours is probably a factor in the pricing.

      Obviously there are other factors that make this a tough comparison, but I believe Sicily makes up for the negatives with its people (when they aren’t driving..ha), history, scenery, food, and culture.

      So very long story short, while I agree on the difference in urban standards I don’t think it constitutes paying $6000 vs. $1500 per month in rent.

  3. well, I don’t want to be repetitive, but I need to ask you if you have ever seen Palermo, Messina and Agrigento… LOL! I can’t understand how you can prefer such places to San Diego… Sicily’s cities almost look like third world: outside the (often decrepit and dirty) historical centers such cities are a massive, ugly sprawl of rundown commieblocks and unfinished buildings galore… in particular along the waterfront… I find Sicily a devastated place: too much modern squalor has devastated the beauty of the region… don’t you agree?

    1. This is true Lalla, but I never said that I prefer those cities to San Diego… What I prefer is to pay 1/4 the cost to live in a nicer region around those cities.

      If you are going to pinpoint rundown industrial cities to compare you would have to compare them to industrial parts of San Diego, such as Barrio Logan. And I can tell you that Barrio Logan does not have multiple massive 15th century palaces, cathedrals, or opera houses. Palermo is very rich in culture even though it is poor in cleanliness.

      Maybe the fact that I grew up in the Detroit area has hardened me because the description you have of dirty, devastated, and unfinished buildings for these cities made me laugh. In my mind, if you want to see that description go to downtown Detroit on a good day. 🙂

      With all that said I still do think that it is sad that such historically beautiful cities such as Palermo have unnecessary cleanliness problems, but “devastated” is a bit dramatic… especially when you say it for the entire island of Sicily.

  4. SD has rundown areas, but as a whole is NOT a blighted and dirty city… Sicily’s cities are as a whole blighted, traffic-ridden and dirty… unfortunately…. and there’s TOO MUCH modern squalor along the coastline and around the historical centers: decrepit commieblocks, ugly housing projects, unfinished buildings and cheap villas… I can’t believe you haven’t noticed it yet… and as far as the historical buildings are concerned, well, there’s a lot of old architecture in India and almost nothing in Australia: does it make India better than Australia in terms of quality of life? 😀 😀 😀

    1. LOL! lalla you are adamant to try to bring Sicily down with your decrepit commieblocks references!! ha.. So i guess we will have to agree to disagree. I have noticed the differences in urban standards, but I am basing my comments in my post on our situation and my experience of living in SD for 9 years and Sicily thus far. It is definitely not a cheap villa and it is a nice area. Yet it is still 1/4 of the cost.. that big of a difference does not add up to me especially because we are happier here so far.

      I think you need to spend a weekend in a different part of Sicily. For example this past weekend we spent in Ragusa Ibla and Marina di Ragusa …not a speck of trash. It might cheer you up. 🙂

      p.s. I agree with you on your comparison between India and Australia. But I would chose Italy/Sicily over both India and Australia every day of the week… and Im a surfer.

    1. lalla you crack me up with how upset you are with Sicily! The plan right now is probably 3-5 years, then back to the States and our families and friends. We are lucky to have higher incomes here than we had in SD because of the fact that we are overseas, but I believe in general that its true that the incomes are lower in Sicily.

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