We collect reviews directly from our clients via email and publish them here. We hope you enjoy reading through them as much as we do, they are a paper trail of happy memories!

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Canaiolo

Canaiolo

Great base for visiting the local countryside

Exceptionally hot weather (and a bottle of the locally produced Chianti Classico) greeted us at Lornano; the welcoming pool was just the thing for cooling down. In fact the pool and the surrounding gardens were the best part of the holiday. Angelitta (the site manager) was very helpful; the bedding and towels were changed mid-holiday. The winery tour and tasting was very enjoyable.

Canaiolo was historic with lovely features but in need of a comfy sofa and better mattresses. The patio chairs would of benefitted from cushions. Fly screens and fans would of been an advantage. Great base for visiting the local countryside and towns and having beautiful Sienna on your doorstep was a huge plus.

Manager Response Comfy sofa! We've mentioned this to the owners before and will mention it again now - we do agree. Fly screens and fans can be arranged - in fact the upstairs rooms have screens, if I remember correctly. It's the large double doors that, though wonderful, are tricky to protect from flying things. Glad you enjoyed it overall and thanks for the notes - we will act upon them.

Anon staying in Canaiolo. Sep 2011
Canaiolo

Canaiolo

Canaiolo is in a fine location

Canaiolo is in a fine location, overlooking a valley but with easy access to the main Siena - Florence road. The grounds and the pool are the best things about it - they are idyllic. The house is simply furnished but spacious, although the bedrooms get hot (we were there in a heatwave). Having a helpful caretaker on site was a bonus.

Anon staying in Canaiolo. Jul 2011
Canaiolo

Canaiolo

wonderful week

We had the most wonderful week. Was a stunning place for the kids and adults to stay and relax.

Anon staying in canaiolo. Aug 2011
Canaiolo

Canaiolo

Comfortable, spacious and clean accommodation

Stayed in Mid June, so before mosquitos were a problem. Larger property than expected with a great restaurant within walking distance. Close to Sienna and Chianti estates. Comfortable, spacious and clean accommodation and great pool if still a little cool in June. Would thoroughly recommend the place to anyone who is thinking of visiting the area.

Mr. P.W. with friends and family, UK staying in Canaiolo. Jun 2011
Canaiolo

Canaiolo

We really enjoyed our stay

Exactly what we expected, and a little more. We really enjoyed our stay. Canaiolo is so ideally situated...close to all the places worth visiting. And the scenery...absolutely breathtakingly beautiful. The only problem we initially had was to find the place, directions could be a bit more specific, especially for foreigners. Thank you so much for contributing to a wonderful holiday in Italy.

Mr. L.B. with family and friends, South Africa staying in Canaiolo. Jul 2011
Maison de Timole

Maison de Timole

The villa was everything we wanted it to be

The villa was everything we wanted it to be, great decor and every possible comfort, in a quiet village but close to everything. Again it all ran smoothly with the pickup from Avignon a great help. Jenny the Aussie was very helpful, as was Rosie, an English resident of the village. They gave us great tips on the best markets etc. also told us about the best local restaurant.

S.T. from Australia staying in Maison de Timole. Sep 2019
Maison de Timole

Maison de Timole

We all love it

I've stayed here a number of times now with my family, and we all love it. Just the right distance from the village for going in for pain-au-chocolat and croissants in the morning, yes still feels private and quiet. There are fantastic walks and cycle rides in the area, and the house is spacious and relaxing. Local villages include Gordes, which is magical, and Vaucluse, with an amazing river that springs fully formed from the base of a limestone cliff. Avignon is not far up the road - close enough in fact, that I have been known to hop on the Eurostar in London with my Brompton and then cycle into Cabrieres d'avignon on arrival!

D.W. staying in Maison de Timole. Dec 2015
Archimede

Archimede

Wonderful time at Lake Como

Just wanted to send you a note to let you know we had a wonderful time the other week at Lake Como! What an amazing location! We didn’t really want to leave the house it was so beautiful there with the view. We did manage however to se some of the beautiful gardens and villas as well as take a tour around the lake by a boat Greta arranged for us. Thank you for all your assistance. We look forward to our return.

Melissa Y and family staying in Archimede. Jun 2018
Archimede

Archimede

Fabulous place for a multi-generational holiday

We loved Archimede - we stayed here for two weeks for a big family reunion with grandparents, two siblings' families and grandchildren with ages that varied from 20 to 1 year old. It suited us all perfectly, the house is spacious with really large living areas for us all to eat and chat together, with the airy terrace over the lake and close to the barbecue a popular place for evening meals. The pool and Jacuzzi have stunning views and were very popular for relaxed catch-ups, sitting in the bubbles with a drink.

The surrounding area has some fabulous restaurants as well as plenty of activities for the more energetic in the family. I got a lot of cycling done, and also braved canyoning in Val Bodengo with the younger adults. There were boat trips, relaxing walks and an excursion into the higher alpine valleys by funicular.

A wonderful villa in a great spot, I can highly recommend it.

Dan Wrightson from ITT staying in Archimede. Aug 2016
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

Peace in the sunshine

We loved the little villa. It was simply perfect for us. Beautiful & simply decorated. A little piece of paradise. Thank you!

Ruth staying in Casa Guelfi. Sep 2022
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

A great week in Tuscany

Our Villa was magical. It was in a great location and the views are amazing. The owner Wendy is lovely and was very welcoming. I would recommend a stay to experience the real Tuscany.

David staying in Casa Guelfi. Aug 2022
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

We could not have asked for a better place

Casa Guelfi was absolutely perfect we could not have asked for a better place. It was very clean and had all we needed, the pool was actually warm which was a surprise after our previous week in another cottage. Wendy the owner was very welcoming and had done nice little touches to welcome you. We would most definitely like to go back in fact it is our last night here and we really do not want to leave. I would also like to thank invitation to Tuscany for all the booking it was perfect.

Angela F from UK staying in Casa Guelfi. Jul 2022
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

Peaceful Italian heaven!

Everything about Casa Guelfi was perfect for us. We wanted a quiet getaway and finding a house for 2 with a pool, and as nice as this, is very rare. We took the ‘healthy’ walk up to Ameglia, and used the bus to visit Montemarcelo and Lerici, but really our trip was about having a relaxing time. Perfect !

Roger P from UK staying in Casa Guelfi. Jul 2022
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

An absolutely wonderful holiday home

This is an absolutely wonderful holiday home. The view of Amiglia is magical, the pool fantastic and the house close to perfect. Our hosts were lovely people, very welcoming but not intrusive. The House is fully equipped and very tranquil. The village above the house is so picturesque and mysterious with such intriguing architecture. We thoroughly enjoyed our week at Casa Guelfi.

Ian from UK staying in Casa Guelfi. May 2022
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

Magnificent!

The moment you arrive you will feel transported to another time. The old village and surroundings provide a splendid backdrop for this charming villa. All the right touches are in place from the kitchen to the pool. You will find yourself relaxing and soaking up all that makes staying here so memorable. The local store is well-stocked and there are wonderful places to eat in Bocca di Magra. A dip in the sea and trips to Tuscan towns will complete your getaway. The owners live nearby and are gracious, helpful and readily available. A delightful place to experience Toscana!

Barbara C from USA staying in Casa Guelfi. Jun 2022
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

Lovely relaxed villa

Lovely villa and great views. Hosts were very friendly and ideal base to explore the beautiful costal towns such as lerici.

Lyndsay S staying in Casa Guelfi. May 2022
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

Wow! Stunning views and a beautiful house and pool.

This is an absolutely wonderful holiday home. The view of Amiglia is magical, the pool fantastic and the house close to perfect. Our hosts were lovely people, very welcoming but not intrusive. The House is fully equipped and very tranquil. The village above the house is so picturesque and mysterious with such intriguing architecture. We thoroughly enjoyed our week at Casa Guelfi.

Ian M staying in Casa Guelfi. May 2022
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

unique, charming cottage for two

Casa Guelfi is a unique, charming cottage for two located up a very steep narrow hill. It is definitely a good idea to hire a small car! Although this comfortable little property is only for two, it is set in a large plot so there is plenty of space to relax outside and enjoy the tranquility of the location. The beautiful pool is a real asset and it was very easy to pass the time just relaxing and enjoying the splendid views of Ameglia Alta and the Apuan mountains. There is a steep pathway up to the very pretty Ameglia Alta from behind the property and this is definitely worth a visit; the restaurant up there is very good but only open on certain days and booking is essential. Bocca di Magra is very attractive and just a short drive away; ideal for an evening passeggiata and drink watching the evening sun on the marble mountains

Jane from UK staying in Casa Guelfi. Jun 2022
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

Just a wonderful place

Just a wonderful place. Peaceful with great views of the old village across an orchard and beyond that, the white (marble) mountains around Carrara. A great location allowing day trips out to Liguria and Tuscany. Welcoming discrete hosts live nearby. Their pizzeria - The Garden Hotel on the riverfront at Bocca de Magra - was low key but with superb pizzas and memorable views.

L.M. from UK staying in Casa Guelfi. Apr 2022
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

Fantastic hosts

Wendy and Mario are fantastic Hosts. The little house is beautiful and on a very quiet spot. Only the road to the house is very small. We enojed our Time in Liguria a lot. Thank you all! Daniel & Mélanie

Daniel & Melanie from Germany staying in Casa Guelfi. Oct 2021
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

The villa and surrounding area were perfect

We had a wonderful time. The villa and surrounding area were perfect. We mostly ate at the marina where there are lots of good restaurants, especially The Garden which is a reasonably priced pizzeria owned by Mario, the owner of the villa, and the slightly more expensive restaurant also owned by Mario, at the marina. One thing I would definitely recommend is a trip to the Carrara marble quarries at the other side of the estuary. Staggering! There is a lovely little town called Sarzana nearby that is worth a visit too. We shall definitely visit Casa Guelfi again.

S.B staying in Casa Guelfi. Feb 2019
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

We had a lovely relaxing week at Casa Guelfi

This is quite a difficult review to write. We had a lovely relaxing week at Casa Guelfi. The property itself is set high on a hill overlooking the River Magra Valley and the Apuan Alps. The road up to the property is steep and narrow, but perfectly navigable for all but the most nervous of drivers. We came to Casa Guelfi after three days in the stunning opulence of Castella di Velona in Montalcino, so it had a tough act to follow. The property is well equipped and comfortable. The pool is lovely and the gardens surrounding the house are beautiful (especially Mario's fruit and vegetable gardens). The owners were very friendly and welcoming and we ate two meals at Mario's restaurant in Bocca di Magra, which were quite superb. They also gave us a couple of bottles of delicious limoncello. The only issues we had with our stay are really nothing to do with the property itself but with he surrounding area and wildlife (!). Firstly, the property is not such a rural idyll as you might perhaps be led to think. The Magra valley is a busy area. The Pisa-Genova autostrada is visible and audible (though not loudly) from the property. There is an airforce base in the valley from which helicopters take off and land. And the village bells ring very loudly throughout the night, so if you are not a sound sleeper you have to sleep with the windows closed or earplugs in! You never get the complete silence that you might have expected from reading other reviews. The surrounding area has a slightly neglected feel to it. There are lots of empty and abandoned buildings (factories, petrol stations) in the valley and the local supermarket has closed down. Bocca di Magra is very nice, but Ameglia itself is a bit tatty. We ended up taking days out to places like Lerici, Telaro, Lucca and the Cinque Terre so it was a good base for exploring and the boat trip from Bocca di Magra to Punta Curvo beach was great fun. We would also warn anyone that is susceptible to insect bites to come properly prepared. When the sun goes down the mosquitoes come out in force and they are very resilient to repellent which made eating outside in the evenings a very uncomfortable experience. This could be seasonal and is also likely to affect some more than others, but do be prepared. Overall, after the Castello di Velona it was a bit of a case of "after the Lord Mayor's Show" - we had a very nice time, but the property did not quite live up to our expectations, though that was probably more as a result of our setting our expectations unrealistically high than anything to do with the property itself.

Mr. I.T., UK staying in Casa Guelfi. Feb 2014
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

...off the tourist track, which made it really special

We have just returned from a week in Casa Guelfi in Ameglia. This perfect little villa is charm itself. So pretty with the most incredible view over beautiful countryside and the ancient hillside village of Ameglia. The little villa itself is extremely comfortable with everything you could possibly need. The welcome pack included wine, pasta, two jars of the owner's special passata and beef tomatoes. There was a welcome bottle of water. Luckily we had our own little milk pots as there wasn't any milk. The outside area is where you want to be though with numerous places to sit depending on whether you want sun or shade. The swimming pool is perfect for cooling off. There were 4 sunbeds and two sets of tables and chairs. If we could suggest anything it would be some cushions for the outdoor furniture. The bedroom is bright and sunny with a very comfortable bed and air conditioning, which was very much needed, Surrounded by beautiful countryside the hardest thing is actually leaving the villa to explore. There is a walk up to the ancient village behind the villa through the woods but then an incredibly long range of winding steps - not for anyone who isn't pretty fit and mobile especially not in July heat - I did survive but only just! At the top though there is a lovely little cafe where the locals congregate. The village is so picturesque and very interesting to walk round and take lots of photos. Bocca di Magra is a very short drive. It's a very quiet quite exclusive sort of place - lots of very posh yachts in the marina. There are a few restaurants- Ciccio the owner's restaurant looked beautiful but a bit out of our price range - seemed very popular though. The bar next to it with outside tables and still part of the restaurant was lovely for evening drinks overlooking the mountains and the estuary. We did eat at Mario's other restaurant at The Garden Hotel. Amazing pizza and pasta and good prices too. Beautiful view of the mountains. We visited the vineyard near Sarzana which was well worth a visit. Very friendly helpful staff and very cheap wine! The town of Sarzana is well worth a visit with its typical old Italian town area and pizza with lots of churches to look at and lovely cafes and Gelaterias. There was a massive market on the Thursday we went and filled the long narrow streets. We felt we were seeing the real Italy. The old village of Monte Marcello is well worth it and not far to go in the car. We had the most incredible lasagne in the piazza in the middle of the ancient town. We also went to Lerici but it was very busy and much more than the fishing village we were expecting, all depends what you want. We weren't keen on the crowded very regimented beaches. Lots of places to eat though. We preferred Telero for an interesting place to walk round. Stunning coastal buildings built on the cliff side. No beach but very quirky place. We would highly recommend this villa for a quiet retreat in the most stunning scenery. It is certainly a windy road to get to it but the directions are excellent and we had no trouble finding it. This area of Italy is very rural and off the tourist track, which made it really special.

M&H S from UK staying in Casa Guelfi. Jul 2018
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

...our favourite holiday house

We had a fabulous time at Casa Guelfi and now regard it as our favourite holiday house. This is no disrespect to other places that we have stayed, but this one is very special.

The house was very well appointed and had a feeling of real quality, the surroundings and views of both countryside and mountains were ideal and overall the setting could not have been better. We were met by the owners' daughter, who lives in London and speak very good English, she was both charming and helpful and the following day we met Mario at The Garden Hotel where we ate a very good meal, Pat had fish and I decided on the mussels. When we shopped we found a Supermarket at San Stefano which had great meat and fish, fresh food and good offers on wine and beer. The local Village is approached from the house via an old footpath with exactly 100 steps bringing you out in the central main square, there is a café opposite, a grocers a few paces up the hill and a very good restaurant further down the square itself, we ate there on our first evening and the place was buzzing, excellent plain Italian food.

Coming back to the house the pool was always a great treat, not big but enough for a corner to corner swim, very deep at one end, and extremely inviting being a few paces from the house. For a romantic break, this place cannot be beaten, but the drive from the main road can be quite a challenge.

...thanks for a lovely holiday,

C.B. from UK staying in Casa Guelfi. Mar 2018
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

Mario the owner was brilliant..

Casa Guelfi in Ameglia, Liguria, Italy was in a superb position, outside the village, on a hill and had spectacular views of the ancient village of Ameglia, perched on the hill opposite. Mario the owner was brilliant - friendly and nothing was too much trouble. We could pick any vegetables or fruit from the land surrounding the house, for our meals and we did! Such a lovely place, with a choice of places to sit around the house and pool. Mario would take fresh vegetables from the same land for his restaurants and hotel, in Bocca di Magra. On leaving, we were presented with two jars of homemade passata and a bottle of mint liqueur. We went several times to Bocca di Magra, on the river estuary and enjoyed delicious fish lunches. One day, we braved the heat and went for the day to Lucca, especially to visit the Puccini Museum. Highly recommend Casa Guelfi, but be prepared for negotiating narrow lanes - large 4 by 4s not required!

S & H.W staying in Casa Guelfi. Dec 2018
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

...a beautiful location with spectacular views

We loved Casa Guelfi . It's in a beautiful location with spectacular views. The owners Mario and Wendy were very welcoming. If anyone is looking for a beautiful, peaceful hideaway this is it. The nearby seaside resort of Lerici is lovely, from here you can get a boat trip to see the Cinque Terre. This is well worth doing. We loved Monterosso one of the villages you can visit by boat. It is also worth visiting Montemarcello a short drive from Ameglia, a lovely place. This is a beautiful area and we would certainly return.

R&S.H. staying in Casa Guelfi. Feb 2017
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

We had a PERFECT stay at Casa Guelfi in July.

We had a PERFECT stay at Casa Guelfi in July. The setting is fabulous and we were wowed every day. Our thanks to Mario for making us so welcome and looking after us throughout our stay. We have no hesitation in recommending the property and your great services as agent. We frequented both of Mario's restaurants in Bocca di Magra, where we had a very special evening at Ciccio on my wife's birthday. Can recommend the walk up to Ameglia from the back of the villa and on to Tellaro for lunch by the tiny harbour. Two busses get you home via Lido di Lerici, which makes a great gelato stop and promenade. Montemarcello is an easy local drive for great views and simple lunch in the square.

A.W. staying in Casa Guelfi. Dec 2017
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

...the place is very hard to leave to go sight-seeing!

Hi Dan and Laura. We've been back from our Italian trip for a few days now and I finally have time to write and tell you how much we loved Casa Guelfi. It was everything, and more, that we had hoped from your description and if there can possibly be a downside to that, it's only that the place is very hard to leave to go sight-seeing! We met Mario (and Myrtila the Lab) on arrival and he couldn't have been kinder and more helpful. What a charming man - and a hard-working one too, having experienced three of his eateries which were all delightful.

We managed to drag ourselves out eventually to visit Lucca (twice - including an evening's music at the Puccini Festival), Bocca di Magra for Mario's restaurants and Lerici. I was very unlucky in coming down with a fairly horrible cold at the start of the week which definitely slowed us down so we will just have to come back in the future to explore more of the Cinque Terre. I'll keep working on my Italian in readiness!

Thanks to you both for ensuring all the arrangements worked smoothly for us. We were very impressed with your service, care and documentation and will not hesitate to recommend ITT.

J.A. staying in Casa Guelfi. Jul 2017
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

We loved the villa and its views

We loved the villa and its views. However we were very disappointed because it is classed as restaurants within walking distance. This was certainly not the case and this spoilt our holiday as we were looking forward to not using the car for this purpose which we had to. Also access to the villa up a narrow path was a minus. If you have a decent car don't come here! At certain parts on the track there was a steep drop. You were only protected by some flat tree trunks from going over the edge. At another part it was completely open. We have photographs of these. Also the jacuzzi bath wasn't working and despite the owner saying someone was coming to repair it no-one turned up. We specifically chose this villa as stated thinking we could walk to restaurants but your information was wrong.

Manager Response I'm sorry to hear you didn't walk to any restaurants - the village of Ameglia is around a third of a mile away - there is a path behind the house. And there are at least 2 restaurants in the village that we know of - there may well be more. -----------------------------a further update-----------------------------I went back to Ameglia and walked the path to the village - there has been a slide on it this winter, but they have bridged it, it was easy to walk. And I found a lovely bar and a lovely restaurant in the village - so I'm a little puzzled by this review.

Anonymous staying in Casa Guelfi . Feb 2011
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

The home is a labor of love and well cared for...

The property is just as depicted and absolutely wonderful. The home is a labor of love and well cared for by the gracious hosts and owners. It is centrally located to explore the region and has all the amenities one could hope to have at a holiday rental. Despite earlier reports my very nice car travelled along the ancient Roman road w/o issue. Although you did need to drive to the harbor for restaurant, getting there was quite easy. The Guelfi family's restaurant was truly phenomenal and we also enjoyed their hospitality at that location every night. The swimming pool and outdoor space was a respite from the warm sunny days. The home's interior was comfortable and had everything you would need for your holiday. The gardens were well maintained and a beautiful surrounding. It was as picturesque a view as you could have ever hoped to see in the italian countryside. Do yourself a favor, do not hesitate and book this wonderful villa. You will be grateful that you did and have no regrets.

Anonymous staying in Casa Guelfi. Nov 2011
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

We would certainly consider returning in the future.

Casa Guelfi is idealic, comfortable and perfect for a relaxing holiday. There are beautiful views from all angles and lots of places to visit both by the sea and inland. The owners are very welcoming and helpful without being imposing and couldn't do enough for us. Their local restaurant serves delicious fish dishes overlooking a lovely marina. The only downside was having to drive to restaurants but this was the price you have to pay for such a peaceful and delightful property setting. We would certainly consider returning in the future.

Anonymous staying in Casa Guelfi. Dec 2011
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

A perfect escape

A perfect escape. Absolute tranquility. A high quality villa in sleepy Tuscan hillside.

Anonymous staying in Casa Guelfi. Oct 2011
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

The villa is an oasis of calm

The villa is an oasis of calm. A beautiful place to relax by the pool. There are 3 different terraces to sit on all with sun loungers and two outside eating areas, one of which is covered. The views are spectacular, the accommodation very comfortable with everything you need for a holiday.

Anonymous staying in Casa Guelfi. Mar 2011
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

This is a wonderfully located get-away place for two

This is a wonderfully located get-away place for two. It is close to Tuscany and the coast with the fascinating Cinque Terre National Park just a short ferry ride away. The house is charming, with its own pool and several sun decks along with 3 outside eating areas and comfortable furnishings. The owners are friendly and helpful without being intrusive. They own a fantastic local restaurant specialising in sea food, which we highly recommend. Following a very healthy crop of tomatoes, we were lucky enough to be invited to pick sun-warmed tomatoes right off the vine. The drive up to the house is interesting! We would suggest that you arrive in daylight as the final part of the drive to the house is very narrow and very steep. However, once we knew where we were going it was easy enough. We thoroughly enjoyed our stay here and would highly recommend it.

Anonymous staying in Casa Guelfi. Dec 2012
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

Second visit to this well equipped house for two!

Second visit to this well equipped house for two! Sky TV and internet if you must! The pool overlooks the town and across to the Carrera Mountains. You can do lots or just sit by the pool. Walking up to the old town stretches the legs but is very pleasant! Catch a boat to the five pretty towns perched on cliff tops. The train from La Spezia will get you there sooner but most of it is in tunnels so not so pretty. La Spezia not an attractive city but good parking under the railway station. Sarzana has a huge Thursday market it is the nearest rail station to get to Florence (change at Pisa) but frankly you would probably be better sitting by the pool with a glass of wine! Luni is a large Roman ruin nearby well worth a visit! 2 Euro to get in and tour, don't argue about the fact it says its free to EU pensioners on the entrance board it isn't! Lucca an easy drive away. Pisa also quite close. Forte dei Marmi market on Wednesday amazing value cashmere linen and leather. Walk round the perimeter until you find the handbag stall loaded with leather bags at only 20 Euro amazing value! This house would be the perfect location for a honeymoon. But also suited two Pensioners who needed to chill out! The drive up to the house greatly improved by the newly built wall, though I would still recommend a car bigger that the Fiat 500 we had the first time. The house owners are there if needed, they own a restaurant (Ciccio) in the port Bocca where the food is AMAZING! Both the house and the area are LOVELY, LOVELY, LOVELY! don't hesitate to book!

Manager Response So delighted to hear you enjoyed it, and thanks for taking the time to write all the tips. Luni is a fantastic place to visit, amazing to think the sea used to surround it. And Ciccio's is a delicious restaurant, we've also had some fantastic meals there. Thanks again, Dan

Anonymous staying in Casa Guelfi. Feb 2015
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

..we instantly knew we'd booked our perfect romantic retreat.

On arrival at Casa Guelfi we instantly knew we'd booked our perfect romantic retreat. It's beautiful. The house is clean, well equipped and comfortable, the outside dining area, the pool, the views... it's all wonderful! Just book it! Mario, the owner, is one of the nicest people you could hope to meet... he lives next door and has a fantastic range of salad & veg growing in raised beds in his garden for use in his restaurant, but we were delighted by the invitation to help ourselves, which we did quite often! And the restaurant?... excellent food, first class service and a beautiful location. CioCio in Bocca di Magri. Had a little trouble finding the house at first, even though the satnav took us within yards of it. When you get to the metal pole in the road (you'll know what I mean when you get there) take the unlikely looking track on the right... it's narrow but fine to drive up. The track bends to the left and then the parking space is on the left, by the gate to the house. Where the track bends left there is also a path to the right... this is the path that leads up to Ameglia where's there's a good local shop, just a short walk. There are lots of beautiful places to visit in the region, we particularly liked Porto Venere, but there are so many lovely coastal towns. If you are planning to drive, I strongly suggest familiarising yourself with the Italian traffic laws regarding 'limited traffic zones'... not a problem, but you need to be aware of them. We had week at Casa Guelfi and then headed off to Tuscany to do the tourist things visiting Florence, Sienna, the Chianti region... but most of the 2nd week was spent just missing our perfect romantic house... it was genuinely sad to leave it behind! Thanks Mario... we've never been anywhere twice, the world's a big place to see, but we'll make an exception and come see you again.

Anonymous staying in Casa Guelfi. Dec 2015
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

The villa exceeded our wildest expectations..

We had a wonderful time at Casa Guelfi in beautiful southern Liguria. The villa exceeded our wildest expectations with its sublime views on all sides and lovely pool; if we could transport it all back to Sussex, we would!

R. & J.C., UK staying in Casa Guelfi. Feb 2015
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

Our gracious hosts made us feel so very welcome...

The view, the villa, the village! All are amazing! Our gracious hosts made us feel so very welcome and the villa itself is delightful. There are so many wonderful places to just sit back and enjoy the scenery. The kitchen is fully equipped and we ate outdoors every day. The bathroom is superb and the bedroom was a wonderful retreat with its wide windows and cooling, white walls. The living area was terrific but we spent most of our time outdoors! The pool was a lifesaver on hot days! The village is a 10 minute walk and you'll find a great grocery store, complete with meat and fish counters. Of course, wine is everywhere and so full of body and taste. We can't wait to go back next year!

Mrs. B.C., Canada staying in Casa Guelfi. Feb 2001
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

Wendy and Mario were fantastic hosts..

Wendy and Mario were fantastic hosts, the villa is in a great location (slightly difficult approach, but worth it)the villa is extremely well appointed, (small critism is that the pool area looses the sun at this time of the year at about 1500hrs due to high trees).

Mr. and Mrs. R.S., UK staying in Casa Guelfi . Aug 2011
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

...all we had hoped and much more than we expected

Everyone writes about the great views but what's equally beautiful is the wonderful sounds that surround the area. Between the ancient bells inside the tower of the city of ameglia and the bells from lower in the valley, it feels like you're listening to the beauty in 5.1 surround sound.

Casa Guelfi was all we had hoped and much more than we expected...so beautiful...the setting was almost surreal... with the lovely city of ameglia on the hillside and the view of the Marble Mountains. But the absolute best? Our hosts, the owners of Casa Guelfi, Wendy and Mario Guelfi. They met us, took us in and treated us like family...had us in their home for drinks, took us to both of their restaurants and Mario took us on a day trip into the Marble Mountains. When I say into the Marble Mountains I really mean inside of the Marble Mountains...Inside the mines where Michaelangelo got his marble for the David! So incredible and something we will never forget...We will definitely go back to Casa Guelfi and have already been invited back as Wendy and Mario's guests!

Mr. and Mrs. B.T., USA staying in Casa Guelfi. Dec 2001
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

We enjoyed a fantastic two weeks at Casa Guelfi...

We enjoyed a fantastic two weeks at Casa Guelfi, and would not hesitate to return. It was very comfortable, well equipped and a superb outside area, with a lovely little pool to spend lazy days relaxing in the sunshine. The owners, Mario & Wendy are both very kind, helpful and hospitable. Their restaurant, Capannina Ciccio down in Bocca di Magra is an absolute must, simply devine! Superbly fresh seafood, excellent service, very friendly and of course the best view in Bocca di Magra out across the estuary & marina. Whilst some reviews have mentioned the challenging drive to the house, it only adds to the charm, and should not put anyone off. The location for local shops, bank, fuel etc is perfect, and for exploring further it's a perfect base for the Cinque Terre, Pisa the marble mountains and Portofino to name a few..There's a lovely feeling to the area as it's surrounded by authentic Italian life, remote enough for privacy, yet not in isolation. Mario's vegetable garden is a thing of wonder! We plan to return soon.

Mr. and Mrs. M.R., UK staying in Casa Guelfi. Jul 2012
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

..the welcome could not have been warmer

This well-equipped and comfortable little house provided the perfect spot for our 30th Wedding Anniversary. While the weather was changeable, the welcome could not have been warmer and the hospitality shown to us was just wonderful. We enjoyed the sun by the pool but also the log fire in the cooler evenings. The little lane up to the house was narrow but easy to drive and visits to the supermarket, the gelateria and the pizza restaurant took just a few minutes. Ameglia is a stunning spot and a good centre for visits to Portovenere, Lucca, Pisa and beyond. We had hoped this holiday would be special and memorable and, thanks to Wendy and Mario, it was.

Casa Guelfi is a unique property crafted with care and skill out of the ruins of an ancient tower. It is appointed well including a jacuzzi bath, swimming pool, a couple of different outside seating/dining options, a well equipped kitchen and even a wood burning stove. The location is close to the coast and the views over the local hills to the mountains provide daily fascination. Casa Guelfi is situated in the luscious and productive gardens of the hosts, Mario and Wendy whose hospitality is second to none. For a special occasion we reserved a table at Mario's restaurant, Capaninna Ciccio, in nearby Bocca di Magra and had a meal fitting of the 30 year anniversary we were celebrating. At then end of holiday it was a great wrench leaving. Note: we had hired a Fiat 500 which I suggest is the perfect size for the access lane to the property parking area.

Cate, UK staying in Casa Guelfi. Feb 2013
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

..from start to finish the holiday was fantastic

Really what can I say, from start to finish the holiday was fantastic, Casa Guelfi is a gem and is perfect for a romantic break for two. The house is well fitted with a good sized kitchen, lounge area and even wifi .The pool was just the right size for a cooling swim but the best is the outside seating areas, absolutely perfect for sitting and staring at the truly stunning view of both ancient Ameglia and the valley below and the distant Cararra mountains whilst sipping owner Marios homemade Limoncello. Both he and Wendy were perfect hosts and their garden is a thing of wonder, and do try their restaurant in Bocca di Magra, highly recommended as is Sarzana, just a 15 minute drive away. The house is approached by a rather narrow and steep track so do not hire a large car, we had a Fiat Punto, which was just about right, and once you driven it a few times, you’re ok. We plan to return.

Mr. & Mrs. D. R., UK staying in Casa Guelfi. Dec 2014
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

FABULOUS!!!!!! What a fantastic place!

FABULOUS!!!!!! What a fantastic place! It is useful to throw some dishwasher tablets and tea bags in your luggage. Also you will need barbecue fuel and matches when you shop. Anyone hiring a car needs to know that a Fiat 500 with two adults, far too much luggage and a weeks food shopping will REALLY struggle up the last bit of unmade road at the end of the journey! What they need is a small car (the road is VERY narrow with a substantial drop to one side) but with a decent sized engine. As far as the house is concerned a mirror in the bedroom would be good. Otherwise you couldn't fault it. Wendy, Poppy and Mario were lovely. There if you needed them but not in any way intrusive! We did struggle a bit with the rubbish, plastics being collected on Tuesday is fine if you leave on a Tuesday but otherwise there will always be a surfeit.(Same with the rest really, you can never get ahead!) In the end we took the (sorted) rubbish as we left. The dump is open on a Saturday morning so it was easy. I think that would be better for your guests. The market at Forte del ? is absolutely worth the drive, lots of linen, cashmere and leather, all very inexpensive. We plan to visit again but for two weeks next time. Thank you, we had a really lovely holiday!

Mr. & Mrs. R. V., UK staying in Casa Guelfi. Jul 2014
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

...want to keep it a secret!

We really loved Casa Guelfi and extremely reluctant to tell any of our friends about it - want to keep it a secret! The cottage was lovely and the only downside was the weather, which of course out of anyones control! As we didn't sunbathe we got out and about quite a lot.

We drove to Pisa one day (full journey incl parking was about 1 hour) which was very easy and parked in the underground car park in Piazza Vittorio Emanuele II, near to a tourist information office and next to Corso Italia. The leaning tower was fantastic and would thoroughly recommend to anyone to buy a timed ticket when they arrive and climb to the top.

I found an informative blog called 'A Path to Lunch' which was useful for local walks. We walked from Ameglia to Tellaro and then along the coast and up to Monte Marcello, quite challenging but worth it The Cinque Terre coastal path only open between Monterosso Al Mare - Vernazza but otherwise closed due to landslides I think. We had a lovely meal in Miky in Monterosso but otherwise found the Cinque Terre extremely busy and touristy despite being early in the season. We drove to La Spezia and parked in the car park beneath the railway station and caught the train to Monterosso which was straightforward but now guests will be able to get a ferry from Bocca di Magra - Portovenere and then another ferry along the Cinque Terre if they wish. Portovenere is worth a visit and recommend a restaurant called Ristorante Le Bocche next to the church at the end of the 'pier'. We went to Mario & Wendy's restaurant a couple of time which was lovely.

All in all a lovely holiday and we'd love to return next year

M.M. and P.D., UK staying in Casa Guelfi. Feb 2013
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

We had a most enjoyable time

We had a most enjoyable time. The property is very well appointed and enjoyable to spend time in, both inside and outside, with its spectacular proximity to the very picturesque Ameglia. It is very close to beautiful sites along the coast (the Golfo dei Poeti, La Spezia, the Cinque Terre and Portofino) and inland (Sarzana, Luni, Castelnuovo Magra and the marble quarries of Carrara; great views of the latter two from the poolside). Genoa too is remarkably accessible and well worth the effort (we went twice). We had a couple of excellent meals, at the Trattoria dai Pironcelli in Montemarcello and Trattoria Armanda in Castelnuovo Magra. The house had some good local guidebooks but we found the Bradt Guide to Liguria by Rosie Whitehouse (Second Edition March 2016) very useful.

P. and M.D., UK staying in Casa Guelfi. Dec 2016
Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi

Casa Guelfi is just amazing

Casa Guelfi is just amazing. A beautiful and private cottage with pool and everything you need. Wendy and Mario are wonderful and always at hand if needed. The location is idealic overlooking the Carrara mountains and beside the old Ameglia alta town. Mario's restaurant Ciccio at Bocca Di Magna has wonderful seafood and the service is classic and helpful. His Marina di Carrara restaurant is also excellent and you should try his new Pizza Restaurant at the Garden Hotel in Bocca Di Magna. We visited Montemarcello and Lerici, two small towns overlooking the sea and the Cinque Terre. Also the Carrara mining towns in the hills, Ometteto's Ristorante in Buseletto, and Usama al Nassar's marble studio and workshop nearby to the quarries used by Le Cave di Michelangelo at Torrano. Towns such as Luca, Pisa, Seravezza, Stazzema, and Sarzanna are close by and worth visiting. A very useful note is that the Carrefour supermarket at Ameglia is open every day from 7.30am to 10.00pm.

H. and C.W., Australia staying in Casa Guelfi. Dec 2016
Stalla

Stalla

We loved stalla!

We loved Stalla! It exceeded our expectations in every respect and was very good value. It is in such a lovely setting and seemed more spacious than in the pictures. We also appreciated the high standard of fittings and good quality bed linen. The kitchen and large dining table were fantastic as we cooked most evenings. There was a "proper", clean pool, which we all enjoyed. Anne Marie was fabulous and an amazingly kind and knowledgeable host, recommending the antiques market in Arezzo, which was fascinating, and giving very useful tips for our day trip to Florence.

We were due to be terribly early on our arrival day, so stopped for lunch in Civitella, which is stunning, but not mentioned in our guidebooks. We were so pleased we'd not missed out on seeing it. The day out we all loved most was to the Abbazia di Monte Oliveto Maggiore. Quite a long journey but it had been my favourite place when I went 30 years ago, when staying in an Invitation to Tuscany property with my own parents. It was wonderful to take my family and find they loved it too. from the stunning frescoes and marquetry to the delicious wine and olive oil. Such a peaceful spot.

We had a fabulous time and want to come back to Tuscany soon, possibly with my sisters and their families if we can find a time when we can all make it. Thank you so much for your personal attention in helping us choose a property and with all the details of the booking. It made such a difference. We hope to book with you again. I would certainly recommend Invitation to Tuscany very highly to anyone.

M.B. family from UK staying in Stalla. Dec 2018
Stalla

Stalla

We would return without any hesitation!

Conveniently located for Arezzo, Sienna, Florence and the Arno valley. Plenty of restaurants in the area and the nearest small supermarket 10 minutes drive away, is open Sunday morning until 12.30, during the summer. Good large Ipercoop on outskirts of Arezzo about 30 mins drive. We found it useful to stock up here at the beginning of the holiday. Valdambra estate- large extensive grounds-plenty of space for children to play and have adventures! Doesn’t feel crowded with all 3 properties occupied. Lovely pool and terrace with plenty of loungers, tables and sun shades. Property clean, tidy and well maintained, well furnished and well equipped with good internet connection. Annemarie is a friendly, helpful, knowledgeable and welcoming host and is willing to make phone calls to book restaurants or tickets for visits to museums etc. An information pack (rubbish collection, restaurants, shopping etc) would have been useful, but Annemarie is aware of this and is in process of providing one. If 6 people using property, only having the use of one shower may become a problem, especially as it is off the master bedroom. Location-secluded-not in walking distance to anywhere -a car is needed for shops and restaurants (but we were aware of this when booking the property) and is not a problem. We would return without any hesitation!

Mrs. A.R. and family, Switzerland staying in Stalla. Feb 2013
Stalla

Stalla

We thoroughly enjoyed our stay at Stalla!

We thoroughly enjoyed our stay at Stalla! Anne-Marie was a wonderful help and the fact that she spoke both English and Italian was especially useful when we needed to make a trip to the pharmacy! My two daughters (8 and 11 years old) loved everything that the property had to offer. The large pool, the ping pong table and lounging hammocks were enjoyed each day. The girls also loved playing bocce each evening on the grassy space outside our villa.

We loved the fully stocked kitchen and we were especially happy with the option to arrive with groceries in the kitchen! Thanks Anne-Marie! The villa was clean and spacious and fully equipped. We had so much to do that we didn't turn the television on for the entire week!

We found it helpful when our host was able to make restaurant and gallery reservations for us. That was very useful and made our experience less stressful.

We really enjoyed our experience with Invitation to Tuscany as well as our stay at Stalla. We would return and recommend both services! The Canadian reps for Invitation to Tuscany were superb in answering all my questions!

Ms S.S. and family, Canada staying in Stalla. Dec 2013
Stalla

Stalla

Stalla lived up to our expectations and more

Stalla lived up to our expectations and more. Beautiful grounds and location, lovely swimming pool in idyllic setting, it is a tastefully furnished apartment with everything you need. We took our two very young granddaughters with us on holiday and Stalla was perfect for our needs. The apartment is spacious and really well equipped. The vast kitchen table with comfortable upholstered chairs is quite luxurious. Wonderful comfortable beds with fine bed linen made for a good night's sleep. The gardens are vast, & we loved sitting out at night with the trees and pool illuminated - it is a magical place. Annemarie is friendly and helpful, a great font of knowledge about places to eat and nearby towns and villages to visit. We took her advice and ate at two great restaurants. Her recommendations are spot on. Annemarie intends to put together an information pack for the house - a book of tips and recommendations, and this will be a real plus. We would not have stumbled upon the restaurants she recommended, and would have hated to miss out on them. Because of having a 2 and 4 year old with us, we did not do very much sightseeing and didn't go too far afield. This was fine as we have visited Italy and Tuscany many times, and Stalla is such a delightful place to be. The places we did visit were Monte San Savino - a delightful walled hill town, Cortona and nearby Civitella. All very lovely, well preserved towns with lots of history and good places to eat. We can't recommend it highly enough.

Manager response: I'm delighted! We think it's great but as it's the first year it's always good to hear you were as happy as we had hoped you would be - and AnneMarie is the perfect host! Dan W.

Ms. S.C. and family, UK staying in Stalla. Oct 2013
Stalla

Stalla

Really recommend this location...

Stayed at Stalla and Arcata together with another family and our children. The estate is beautiful, comfortable with high standard and very nice interior. Great pool and possibilities for relaxation or do sports if you prefer that. Cooked our food but also went to nearby villages to visit trattorias, restaurants and Osterias. The owner is an energetic wonderful lady always ready to help out to make the stay as pleasant as possible. Really recommend this location and especially if you go with friends or family but there is enough space even if there are other families around. Great location to visit Siena, Montepulciano, Arezzo, Florence etc. Just perfect vacation!!

Mrs. A.L. and family, Poland staying in Stalla. May 2015
Casa Umbra

Casa Umbra

Blissful retreat

Casa Umbra is the perfect setting for a peaceful and relaxing break. Nestled in the hillside, surrounded by nature and incredible views, it really does offer a everything you need for a complete getaway. We could not have asked for a better place to enjoy Southern Umbria. The access road is steep, so a larger car (4X4) is recommended.

Anonymous from UK staying in Casa Umbra. Sep 2022
Casa Umbra

Casa Umbra

We had a very relaxing stay

You will need to take care with the road leading to the accommodation as it can be steep and narrow in parts. But the villa is in an enviable location with excellent views of the surrounding hills and villages. We had a very relaxing stay. The kitchen is excellent, well equipped and very convenient for cooking. Bedroom very comfortable. The swimming pool is wonderful, with good sun-beds, and we liked very much the hammocks on the lawn at the front of the villa. There are a number of places outside to eat, so you can choose depending upon the time of day. Mario is a very welcoming, helpful and generous host, always available but also very conscious for the privacy of the guests.

D.C. staying in Casa Umbra. Dec 2018
Casa Umbra

Casa Umbra

It is just a wonderful place...

It is just a wonderfull place, beautifull villa with a very nice, romantic view of the small walley and surrounding hills. Ideal for families looking for silent place in umbrian nature. We spent there 1 week which was not enough for us. I would recommend to stay for 2 or even more weeks so you can discover the whole area and enjoy umbrian food, nature, history...one thing should be highlighted here, the owner - Mario Santoro. His helpfull attitude and personlity made our stay much more pleasant. Thank you

M.O. staying in Casa Umbra. Oct 2017
Casa Umbra

Casa Umbra

..the perfect hideaway in Italy's heartland

Located on a remote hill with a stunning view of the breathtaking landscape of Umbria, the Casa Umbra is the perfect hideaway in Italy's heartland. The elegant and luxurious residence is fully equipped with everything one needs for a perfect vacation. One can relax by the pool or read in one of the hammocks overlooking the hillside. The three bedrooms with ensuite bathrooms are spacious and provide perfect privacy even when sharing the house. The kitchen is fully equipped and even though one is fully surrounded by nature there is a fast internet connection, a TV and telephone. While it could be easy to loose oneself in the serenity of the place and just never leave the villa, one is still very close to the gems of Italian art and culture. Beautiful must see towns such as Todi, Orvieto, Perugia, and Assisi are just a short drive away and offer fantastic dining and outstanding cultural experiences. Me and my family would have loved to stay the whole summer and hope to come back soon.

N.D. staying in Casa Umbra. May 2017
Casa Umbra

Casa Umbra

Time at this Villa is simply remarkable

Time at this Villa is simply remarkable. The food, the staff, the hospitality, the comfort and the view are simply unmatched

C.T. staying in Casa Umbra. Aug 2017
Casa Umbra

Casa Umbra

One of the most beautiful places in the world!

One of the most beautiful places in the world! Peaceful surrounding, ideally arranged villa with exceptionally good taste, never ending visual and physical pleasure. To come back and experience again and again

K.I. staying in Casa Umbra. Dec 2017
Casa Umbra

Casa Umbra

A marvellously tranquil part of Umbria...

A marvellously tranquil part of Umbria, and a great house high on a hill. I have spent happy days there, and highly recommend it. Day trips to great places are to be found in every direction. I only hesitate to recommend it because I want to keep it to myself!

W.A.E. staying in Casa Umbra. Dec 2017
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

Wonderful 2 weeks

Thankyou for a wonderful 2 weekss! 3 generations of our family all happy, relaxed and wanting to come back. We loved the pool of course, but also the fabulous views, the serenity and your discrete care. You certainly live in paradise here.

Beate and family staying in Castelonchio. Aug 2022
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

The perfect place

This simply is the perfect place you've given us, we have unwound, relaxed and immensely enjoyed our stay here - Dan gave it the big sell and he wasn't wrong. The views, the house, the area, absolutely perfect. The lovely welcome pack in the fridge, your beautiful garden and pool and even the warm welcome from the cats and both of you.

You couldn't have been better hosts - your place is absolutely beautiful and we can't wait to come back again.

Jill & family from UK staying in Castelonchio. Jul 2022
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

Exactly what we wanted

Castelonchio is in a beautiful hillside location with great views. The house, gardens and pool are all of very good quality and well equipped. The owners live next door and managed a perfect balance of being available and helpful without intruding on our holiday. The local area is full of interesting places to visit and things to do. There is no downside to staying here. We will definitely return.

Peter staying in Castelonchio. Aug 2022
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

Perfect house and pool

We had a fantastic week at Castelonchio. The house was lovely, authenic, clean and everything was just perfect. The saltwater pool was the best, we have experienced in a rented house. It was nice to arrive to the house where the host bid us welcome and even had provided food and wine in the frigde. The host was very helpfull, informative and kind in a most friendly way. We already miss the beautiful view from the house and the lovely evenings at one of the terraces.

Hanne staying in Castelonchio. Jul 2022
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

Castelonchio the Umbrian Idyll

Wonderful welcome, fabulous setting, Five star with bells, a real treat. We loved it Alla prossima B&T x

B & T from UK staying in Castelonchio. May 2022
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

A real home from home

We have had such a lovely time here, a real home from home, and amazing views. Thank you for your help and hospitality.

Tracy and family from UK staying in Castelonchio. May 2022
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

A delightful Villa with large airy cool rooms

Castelonchio it self was a delightful Villa with large airy cool rooms. The owners Barry & Karen made us very welcome and I hope we were no trouble to them.

We visited Assisi and viewed the Basilica of St Francis, the Cathedral and the Basilica di Santa Chiara and had an excellent meal outside on the street at Trattoria Da Erminio on Via Montecavallo.

Also took the boat trip to Isola Maggiore, I was quite tickled that the boat was run by Italia Bus, again had a local meal at Albergo Ristonant da Sauro.

We were were taken with the "Walled" adjacent town of Castiglione del Lago. We had a lovely outdoor meal on a very hot afternoon at "Osteria Calandrino" on Via Vittorio Emanuele not far from the local Hospital. Hope spelling is correct all taken from Google Street view!

On our last night out we saw 2 wild boar when dining at the "Squirrel" "Lo Scoiattolo" restaurant up in the hills, we were on the balcony!! Very unexpected! The locals were throwing food to them from the balcony!

P.E. from UK staying in Castelonchio. Sep 2020
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

A great place, highly recommended.

We had a fantastic time at Castelonchio. The property is really impressive with lots of space, a wonderful pool and large grounds plus the hosts are incredibly accommodating and helpful.

The accommodation is nice and spacious for 6 people with big and airy bedrooms. Everything is modernised, comfortable and the kitchen is well equipped. The large eating area outside is amazing with great views over the lake and a lovely spot to spend your evenings.

We walked down to the town on a couple of occasions for meals and the local restaurants are great. There is so much to do in the area both around the lake and beyond so you will have no trouble filling your time between enjoying the property and getting out and about. The property also has good access so you can get out to places really easily.

The owners are on hand to help if needed and are full of good suggestions on what to do and where to go. The accommodation is at the side of the property and the grounds are spacious so it’s nice and secluded from the main house.

A great place, highly recommended.

D.A. from UK staying in Castelonchio. Jul 2020
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

The views from the pool and eating areas are spectacular

We had a wonderful holiday at Castelonchio. The views from the pool and eating areas are spectacular. We never tired of the marvellous panorama over lake Trasimeno and the surrounding hills. Being up the hill also meant we had pleasant breezes in the heat of August.

Barry and Karen are very kind and thoughtful hosts. They were so kind providing things for us (a praying mantis in a jam jar was a particular favourite of our 8 year old and we have our lavender pouches, made with lavender from the pool, at home to remind us.). They are full of useful info which they happily share - our trips to Sienna and Cortona were made so much easier with Barry’s great directions and helpful places to park for instance.

We enjoyed many meals out locally on recommendation from Barry and Karen. We enjoyed ambling into Tuoro to eat (but weren’t so keen on walking back up the hill afterwards!!). Barry and Karen really know everything so there is little we can add. There are a lot of local dishes made from fish from the lake which are great.

The house is very comfortable, very nicely decorated and spotless!

The area is brilliant. Really easy to get around and we loved Perugia and Sienna (on Palio day!) which are easy drives. I cycled the 65kms round lake Trasimeno early one morning and it was fun and interesting.

W.D. and family, UK staying in Castelonchio. Aug 2019
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

..Villa Castelonchio was the highlight of our trip

We are just back from a very enjoyable 5 week European holiday, which included 2 weeks staying at Villa Castelonchio, Tuoro Sul Trasimeno, in Umbria.

Our stay at Villa Castelonchio was the highlight of our trip and we thoroughly enjoyed our time there.

Barry and Karen where the perfect hosts and couldn’t have been more helpful and friendly. Their input on what to see and do in the area was fantastic, the only downside was that on the first night they introduced us to……Aperol Spritzer which we have developed a real taste for and now stock the ingredients ready for the coming summer in New Zealand and also sent us to their favourite local restaurant where the Pizza is superb and we will be hard-pressed to find anything close to in NZ.

The villa was everything that your website said it would be and we couldn’t have been happier. The fact that it had a full kitchen was a godsend for us as we like to prepare our own meals for some of the time we are away. It was well appointed and the 2 level layout meant that the other couple we had staying with us for some of the time could have their own space.

The villa’s location just a couple of minutes out of the Village meant that it was lovely and peaceful in a rural setting surrounded by olive groves and being just over the Tuscan/Umbria border meant that all the amazing tourist destinations were a short drive away, or as we did on a couple of occasions, a short train journey from the local station.

Barry and Karen keep the place immaculate and between the Aperol Spritzers, the Pizza and the swimming pool we didn’t want to leave. We would have no hesitation in recommending Villa Castelonchio to anyone wishing to have a superb holiday in this location.

M&J P. from New Zealand staying in Castelonchio. Feb 2019
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

We had an absolutely lovely time at Castelonchio

We had an absolutely lovely time at Castelonchio. Barry and Karen our hosts greeted us most warmly and invited us to coffee the morning after our arrival to tell us more about the fascinating area around Lake Trasimeno. Our little grandchildren ran to the pool in their bathing costumes before we had even unpacked the cars and from then on it was the pool or nothing for them so it was with difficulty that we explored the endlessly intriguing small towns around the Lake. The immediate area is fascinating and the property is well within reach of the more major towns of Siena and Florence, Perugia and Arezzo - that is if the children will leave the pool and the grown ups will leave the beautiful garden with its amazing views.

P.C. staying in Castelonchio. Dec 2018
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

Very comfortable house

Very comfortable house.Excellent out side space. Very well situated for exploring or in our case returning to favourite places. One new place this year a little further afield was Pienza.Would recommend for a visit. Trattoria Dardano in Cortona is a good place for lunch.Always busy.

J. L.W. staying in Castelonchio. Feb 2018
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

We had a fabulous time at Castelonchio

We had a fabulous time at Castelonchio. The villa was immaculate & had everything you could possible wish. Sitting outside on the patio with a glass of local wine & looking at the views was beautifully relaxing & the children in particular, loved the fabulous pool. Barry & Karen were great hosts & recommended places of interest and were incredibly helpful researching how we could do a park/ride to Rome on our last day. We had beautiful day trips to Siena, Orvieto, Gubbio & San Gimignano as well as a very enjoyable boat trip out to one of the islands in Lake Trasimeno. All in all, it was a fantastic week & we hope to visit Barry & Karen's beautiful house again sometime.

D.R. family staying in Castelonchio. Nov 2018
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

I am jealous of your Italian paradise

I am jealous of your Italian paradise. If you need extra help with the pruning of the olive trees or grass cutting, do give me a ring! Free labour ;o) Wonderful relaxing week, good to see medieval towns and churches. Great history and good food. The pool is the icing on the cake and Castelonchio is a retreat from the hurly burly. As John Wayne said, 'I shall return."

Mr. N.C. and friends, from U.K. staying in Castelonchio. Feb 2014
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

We have loved every minute

Karen and Barry - Thank you so much for lending us your beautiful home! We have loved every minute. Over our two weeks we have visited Florence (by train - very easy), Siena (our favorite city - so gorgeous), Cortona, Assisti and Isola Maggiore (almost by peddalo!). We've also had lovely relaxed days reading by and playing in the pool and making delicious food to eat on the super verandah. You have been most hospitable and have made our wonderful stay even more special! Many, many thanks...

Ms. C.B. and friends, from U.K. staying in Castelonchio. Feb 2015
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

You have a really beautiful home...

Thank you both so much for all your advice and your hospitality. You have a really beautiful home here and you really have thought of everything to make a perfect holiday retreat. I loved my shopping trips out with you, Karen - great fun!! Many thanks.

Mrs. S.M. and family, from U.K. staying in Castelonchio.
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

The setting is idyllic, so relaxing

Thank you Barry and Karen for sharing your beautiful home with us. The setting is idyllic, so relaxing. Thank you for your advice and recommendations and a fridge full of provisions. A wonderful holiday to celebrate our ruby wedding anniversary, will remember it always.

Mr. R.B. and friends, from U.K. staying in Castelonchio. Dec 2016
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

...a relaxing and pleasant experience

Thank you so much for you kind hospitality and letting us stay at your wonderful house. We've had a brilliant time exploring the area and coming back here to wind down has been a relaxing and pleasant experience. I even managed to surprise my beautiful girlfriend (now fiancee) with a marriage proposal in the olive grove. I'm sure we'll be back again at some point.

Mr. D.B. and friends, from U.K. staying in Castelonchio. Dec 2017
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

..another amazing holiday!

Thank you, Barry and Karen, for another amazing holiday! Gorgeous house, with a perfect pool and perfect hosts. We all hope to see you again soon!

Mr. T.E. and family, from the U.K. staying in Castelonchio. Feb 2017
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

Umbria for us from now on

Thank you very much Barry and Karen - Very nice. I apologize for not doing my research before I arrived, Umbria for us from now on. Amongst all the culture, history, leather and wine shops, there was the lake. Treat yourself and hire that paddle board Barry, the best €10 per hour you'll spend for a sore back. ... and the house/ the view / the pool - if only Fife were warm (or even saw the sun), it could be this good. ... and what a surprise, there's we thinking that my summer C90 tape mix would be useless without my walkman - the next time, I'll bring a few more cassettes. Wonderful!

Mrs. F.H. and family staying in Castelonchio.
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

....really great personal service from Invitation to Tuscany

We all had a fantastic time thanks, and I can’t believe that it was a week since we left to come home!

The villa was beautiful and really well fitted out. Barry & Karen were the prefect hosts – there for advice if you wanted it but left you space for yourselves the rest of the time. The welcome drink and restaurant recommendations were most appreciated, together with all the food and drink in the Welcome Pack.

All of the local restaurants we went to were ones recommended, and we enjoyed really good local food, at a very treasonable cost.

We went to Siena and Cortona whilst we were there, and some of the smaller towns around the lake – all very easy to get to thanks to Barry’s instructions in the villa.

The big hit with the most important person, our 11 year-old granddaughter, was of course the huge pool. In fact our son and daughter-in-law used it quite a lot as well.

I will, and have already, recommend it to friends, and I hope that we can go back as a family someday.

Finally, a big thanks to you and Dan for all your help in the year since we first booked it, really great personal service from Invitation to Tuscany.

Bob D. staying in Castelonchio. Feb 2017
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

Castelonchio more than lives up to its reputation

Castelonchio more than lives up to its reputation. Excellent accomodation,wonderful salt water pool in substantial well kept grounds and easy walking distance to shopping and the village. And a plus--charming and most helpful hosts.

Anonymous staying in Castelonchio. Sep 2011
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

..stayed at Castelonchio 2 years ago and loved it so much we returned

We stayed at Castelonchio 2 years ago and loved it so much we returned again this year. The English owners Barry & Karen are super hosts (they live next door) and are able to offer sound advice on all things local together with a warm welcome. The accomodation is lovely with 3 big bedrooms and 2 'well appointed' bathrooms. Bed linen from 'The White House' and everything really comfy and clean. Kitchen well stocked with the necessary implements if you want to practice your Italian cookery skills as we did. Beautiful view over Lago Trasimeno from your little balcony outside the main double bedroom and the outside terrace which is perfect for breakfast. There's a decent supermarket nearby - within walking distance if you run out of wine but 5 mins by car if you need heavier supplies. Good local (and cheap) rail links to tourist towns ie Assisi if you don't want to be a slave to the car. Passignano 10 mins away for some lovely restaurants near the lake. If it’s convenient then we recommend flying to Perugia as it's an easy drive. Enjoy!

Anonymous staying in Castelonchio. Oct 2010
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

I can see us going back soon

The house was comfortable and spacious, it felt fresh and everything we needed was there, inside the house and out; lots of garden, ample parking, we enviously eyed the pool but were there too early in the year for a swim, so contented ourselves instead with wandering around the olive grove, enjoying the views of Lake Trasimeno and beyond. And to misquote someone, the angels were in the details: a bottle of home grown olive oil in a kitchen cupboard, some fresh milk and cold wine waiting in the fridge when we arrived, and joy of joys, the kitchen knives were properly sharp! It is a house that has been thought through, and through again.

The hosts Barry and Karen were helpful and friendly - even when our 5 year old sneaked off and hid behind the wintering lemon tree, for a full 20 minutes, enjoying our increasingly frantic flapping. (It was reassuring to realise that small adventurous children cannot escape without the key to the gate.) They gave us suggestions for things to visit and see which were perfect for our family, with genuinely useful and detailed information; like knowing exactly where to park on our trips to Assisi and Cortona, or printing off the ferry timetable for Isola Maggiore on the lake, and which of the local train stations to choose for the best services to Orvieto (with its funicular, extraordinary double helix well, caves: a perfect day out for both adults and kids.)The local village - in walking distance - had everything we needed. A pizzeria - delicious pizza, good value and welcoming, a well-stocked supermarket, and much more that we didn't get to explore. It is a really rich and interesting part of Italy to visit, with more to see and visit than is possible in a week, or even two. I can see us going back

Mr. D.D. and family, Italy staying in Castelonchio. Mar 2010
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

My favourite thing was the swimming pool

The hosts, Barry and Karen, were very helpful and attentive. The villa was in excellant condition and fully equipped. Location was good and having a supermarket a mile away was very convenient. The panoramic view of the lake was fantastic from Castelonchio. My favourite thing was the swimming pool, surrounded by lavender bushes. Great to smell whilst you were swimming and listening to the bees was relaxing too. Great summer holiday memories. Honestly can't think of anything negative to say about, maybe the only thing is that you would need a car to get about. Public transport not near farmhouse.

Anonymous staying in Castelonchio. Dec 2010
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

The views to lake Trasimeno are fantastic

We have a lovely stay at Castleonchio. The house is spacious and is well furnished. the views to lake Trasimeno are fantastic and there is a great eating area which takes advantage of the view and was a great place to dine and enjoy a glass of wine. the swimming pool is really nice and because the owners cover it up each night was really warm which was a joy as we have stayed in villas in tuscany that the pool was unusable in high season as they were so cold. The owners live in the attached villa and they were a mine of really useful local information and were fantastic hosts with nothing being too much trouble. They found us a restaurant we wanted to visit, put a paddling pool out for our toddler and really made the holiday for us. We had a lovely time and would definatly recommend Castleonchio.

Anonymous staying in Castelonchio. Feb 2009
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

We hope to return soon

Castelonchio is a beautifully restored stone farmhouse in a wonderful location. The views from the house are terrific and the gardens lovely. The house is extremely tastefully done and well-equipped. The owners - who live in a wing of the house - are lovely, friendly but also discreet- the fresh water swimming pool is great - also with a lovely view. There is a very nice small supermarket very close by - and the towns and many of the restaurants around the lake are lovely. We hope to return soon.

Mr. K.B. and family, UK staying in Castelonchio. Dec 2009
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

The location here is incredible - very quiet with stunning views

The owners, Barry and Karen made our family feel so welcome. We arrived late, after the shops had shut and there was even pasta and provisions left to fill our rumbling tummies! The location here is incredible - very quiet with stunning views. There's a handy shop nearby and a few local restaurants. We were even invited to help pick olives in the next door grove. The beautifully restored farmhouse is immaculate and comfortable. I hope we can visit again sometime!

Ms. M.K. and family, UK staying in Castelonchio. Feb 2010
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

...everything in the property is five star

The location is great, overlooking Trasimeno, with outstanding evening views. But what is exceptional about staying here is that everything in the property is five star. It is really well designed, and furnished and looked after and comfortable. So when you get there it exceeds the promise of the pictures. Every part of the proerty so well-cared for - and that makes for a better holiday. Add to that that the hospitality (we were really well looked after - far and away beyond what we might have expected) and it made for a fantastic week. We'd happily go back there and can recommend it without reservation also - excellent location - Trasimeno a walk away, Assissi nearby, cycling round the lake etc...perfect. We'll be back.

Anonymous staying in Castelonchio. Dec 2011
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

We enjoyed the peace and quiet and beauty of Castelonchio

We had a spectacular time during our week in Umbria. Having English speaking hosts made it a total pleasure and incredibly helpful in making our daily plans; where to go in the area and where to park, places close to the main towns we visited that we may not know about, and tips on where to eat etc. We enjoyed the peace and quiet and beauty of Castelonchio, and the lack of hoards of tourists in the immediate area. All in all a delightful vacation!

Ms. H. M. and friends, USA staying in Castelonchio. Dec 2011
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

...a high standard with extras as well

We could not fault the service we received from the initial booking to the stay in the villa. The owners made sure everything was provided to a high standard with extras as well. They were very friendly and helpful when needed but remained discreet during our stay. The farmhouse was wonderful itself with amazing views and the grounds gave us lots of space to spread out. The pool was beautiful, very refreshing and surrounded by fragrant lavender. The location was wonderful and quiet being in a rural setting outside the small town with views of Lake Trasimeno. You can easily visit several famous cities and local historic towns. We particularly enjoyed being able to walk to local restaurants (slight hill involved on homeward route). We also enjoyed discovering for ourselves the local area.

UK visitors staying in Castelonchio. Feb 2012
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

It is the only home we would consider going back to

My friend and I vacation in Tuscany/Umbria every summer in a different home for two weeks for the last 12 years. By far, this was the nicest home and best experience. The hosts are wonderful; the home comfortable and is truly well located. The breeze from lake makes every day a nice one! It is the only home we would consider going back to.

Ms. B.D. and friend, USA staying in Castelonchio. Feb 2012
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

Wish we could have stayed longer!

We thoroughly enjoyed our week's stay here. Wish we could have stayed longer! The villa is gorgeous, the pool is lovely and both have amazing views of the lake and surrounding countryside. The owners were very kind and helpful. It was a truly amazing stay! Highly recommend to anyone

Mrs. S.L. and family, UK staying in Castelonchio. Dec 2012
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

Reading through all the reviews there is not one negative comment

Reading through all the reviews there is not one negative comment. That's because this is a perfect holiday, a real home away from home in an idyllic setting. We had a 2 and 4 year old with us and we felt very relaxed knowing they could safely explore the lovely grounds, swim in the great pool, pick grapes and olives and spend hours trying to catch grasshoppers and lizards. We enjoyed sipping wine at sunset overlooking the stunning view of the lake, visiting the beautiful towns of Cortona, Assissi , Perugia etc. A great little supermarket is close by, a winery at the bottom of the hill, gorgeous ice cream shops by the lake .... all very easy and stress free holiday. Thanks Barry and Karen - keep up the good work and we hope to return one day.

Mrs. L.W. and family, UK staying in Castelonchio. Dec 2012
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

Our recent stay at Castelonchio was superb

Our recent stay at Castelonchio was superb. The villa was first class and the owners really know how to make their guests feel welcome. Their knowledge of the local area and the little tips on how to get around were immensely helpful. We were a family of 6, which included myself, my wife, 2 grandparents and 2 Daughters of ages 10 & 14 and we found enough variety during the 2 weeks to keep everyone happy. We swam and used the facilities at the local lake, Parco Del Lago Trasimeno, sunbathed around the Villas pool with its beautiful surroundings, went site seeing in many of the local towns, all soaked in history and tradition, and ventured out to Rome: only a 2 hour train journey.

Enjoying a good meal was an important part of our holiday and we had great experiences at the local restaurants with one particularly nice tavern within walking distance. Catering for ourselves was also easy to do as the Villa was fully equipped with all the utensils we needed, including the most important thing a BBQ.

I wholeheartedly recommend staying at Castelonchio if you are looking for a holiday that encompasses traditional Italy whilst staying in total comfort.

Mr. M.C. and family, UK staying in Castelonchio. Feb 2014
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

This house is always a delight

This house is always a delight, the rooms are clean, crisp and comfortable, the views of the lake so pretty, breakfast, lunch and dinner on the terrace always has a stunning backdrop. We enjoyed exploring the area including the lakeside town of Passignano sul Trasimeno, just a 10 minute drive from the house, where we enjoyed seafood in some new favourite restaurants. You can take boat rides to the islands or just paddle on the shore, there is something for everyone.

L.& L. staying in Castelonchio. Sep 2015
Castelonchio

Castelonchio

Barry and Karen were great hosts

We had a fabulous week at Castelonchio. Barry and Karen were great hosts. I was perhaps a little apprehensive about the "shared" aspect of the accommodation, particularly with 3 fairly small and noisy children, but I needn't have been. The annexe was large, comfortable and private. The pool was beautiful, as in fact was the location generally, and although we were effectively sharing Barry and Karen's home, we did not feel like we were intruding. They were there, but somehow not! (If that makes sense?!)

Barry recommended places to go and see, which were all worth the trip (again we had been slightly apprehensive about sightseeing with small children in the height of Summer). We ate out a couple of times at Da Silvano's, a pizza place in the village, which had good food and a friendly owner (Omar). We also tried a more up market fish restaurant in nearby Passignano, which was also good.

All in all, highly recommended. We would definitely go back.

Mrs. S.H. and family, UK staying in Castelonchio. Feb 2013
Massimo

Massimo

Highly recommend this estate

Montestigliano was recommended to me by a friend, who said great things about her stay there in 2010. I looked at other sites in the general area, but nothing seemed better than her recommendation. The villa had everything we needed for a very comfortable week's stay in the Tuscan countryside, and bucket-loads of charm as well. The whole estate is picture-book perfect. There are numerous walking trails, including one to the nearest village where good coffee can be had. 2 pools (one designated for families) operate in the warmer months. We did not miss having a TV. Good WiFi kept us connected with the world (when we wanted to be). The estate is a short drive from the nearest small town for essential supplies, and less than 30 minutes' drive from Siena - a magical place that we went back to a number of times over the week. The opportunity to join other guests for a traditional Sienese dinner was fantastic. The estate's own olive oil is a wonderful product, which we made use of while we were there (and would have liked to take home, except our baggae limits wouldn't allow it!). Highly recommend this estate - I doubt you will have a better experience, and staff will do everything they can to make your stay memorable!

Anonymous guests, Australia staying in Massimo. Dec 2012
Valdorcia

Valdorcia

...a jewel in the Tuscan countryside

We had a really lovely time in Valdorcia - all the family thought the house and location was great - a jewel in the Tuscan countryside. Our daughter and son in law would like to revisit with friends at some point in time. All yours and Sarah's assistance was much appreciated with the wonderful catering we had one night and all the travel instructions. Matteo the owner was charming and helpful also on the 2 occasions we had to reach out to him . We spent most evenings either having a barbecue or other in house cooking as we had the grand kids with us but obviously we were out three nights with the family wedding and also tried a recommended restaurant in Sarteano on the Valdorcia house list which was great.

L.R. and family, UK staying in Valdorcia. Jan 2019
Valdorcia

Valdorcia

... a beautiful old stone farmhouse

Valdorcia is a beautiful old stone farmhouse sitting high up on a sloping property overlooking the valley of the same name. Access is partly via a bumpy, unpaved road for just over a kilometre, which some may find challenging but we found added to the charm and deterred unnecessary traffic. The house is quite remote with no neighbours close by. Because of the altitude of the property, we found it breezy when we were there in September, but that didn’t stop us enjoying the magnificent view from the front of the house.

Rooms are large with high ceilings. Downstairs is an enormous kitchen/dining room with a large table seating eight, as well as a small area with a table for four. The kitchen is “rustic” but well equipped with six gas rings, a wall oven, a large old fireplace for grilling, and a new dishwasher. The pantry, which contains the fridge/freezer (and adjacent powder (cloak) room) is around 15 paces from the kitchen sink which makes for lots of walking. However, given the quality and quantity of Tuscan food, lots of walking is a good thing.

The main floor also has a small sitting area at the end of the dining/kitchen and a bedroom with en suite bathroom.

Upstairs there are five bedrooms, two with en suite bathrooms, and one particularly charming “library” bedroom. The communal bathroom is enormous and its anteroom has a washbasin and a washing machine. There is a lovely sitting room with comfortable sofas and chairs and a huge stone fireplace. A good place to sip Limoncello after dinner.

The caretaker lives on the property with his two friendly dogs. He brought us fresh figs, huge fresh eggs from his chickens, dark red, sweet tomatoes from the garden, as well as lettuces and onions. He is a real asset to the property, putting out garden chairs in the morning and maintaining the grounds beautifully, including the large swimming pool.

Sarteano, the local town, has a small but well-stocked supermarket, as well as some superb restaurants. We were given a list of recommended restaurants in the area by the owner of the farmhouse and every one was wonderful. On two occasions, Rita from Sarteano arrived with her bags and made three-course dinners of typical Tuscan food – enough for the eight of us for lunch next day as well.

The autostrada was fairly close (20 minutes drive) so visiting other areas from this property is relatively easy.

J.G. with Reid Party, Canada staying in Valdorcia. Sep 2017
Valdorcia

Valdorcia

...a place to be treasured

We have just returned from a wonderful visit to Valdorcia. This lovely house sits high up, with a magnificent view over the Val d’Orcia, which was a constant source of pleasure and inspiration. The house is large, with six bedrooms, but occupancy is limited to 8 people, which means that there is plenty of room for all. There are four shower rooms (two en suite, and one of the others has a bathtub too), and there is the added convenience of a separate toilet on the ground floor.

The kitchen is large and exceptionally well equipped, with more than enough pots and pans to satisfy even the most ardent cook. The dining table seats eight comfortably, and there is a very convenient seating area just off the kitchen, ideally placed so that those not involved in meal preparation can provide a stream of advice. The living room, on the first floor, has comfortable seating for at least eight people, with plenty of light and a fireplace for cooler evenings.

We were welcomed to Valdorcia by charming owners Matteo and his wife. They are justifiably proud of their house, and pay guests the compliment of furnishing it with family possessions. However, as beautiful and comfortable as the house and surroundings are, most the best thing about our stay was Gelasio, the caretaker. He lives on the premises, and has the knack of being totally unobtrusive unless needed. It seems that he can turn his hand to anything, but we particularly appreciated the way he produced fresh eggs, salad greens and figs almost before we knew that we needed them. Under his care the grounds and pool are kept immaculate.

We had two excellent meals prepared for us by Rita, who came in to cook, and also enjoyed several restaurants in the area. It is true that it is difficult to find a substandard meal in Italy, but we would like to say that the restaurants recommended in the house notes were outstanding. Other reviewers have rightly praised Ristorante Santa Chiara in Sarteano, but good as it is, we felt that Osteria da Gagliano also in Sarteano, is even better. All credit to Matteo for these recommendations, and also for sending us to Zi’ Pina in Fiumicino, where we spent our last night in Italy before returning (reluctantly) to Canada. Overall, Valdorcia is a place to be treasured, and returned to as often as possible.

Neville and Jenny Reid staying in valdorcia. Sep 2017
Valdorcia

Valdorcia

We would love to come again!

We loved Valdorcia – the house and grounds had the most wonderful atmosphere which we fell in love with as soon as we arrived and met the owner. So many glorious things about it but perhaps above all the view from the property which is stunning whether sitting under the big oak tree in front of the house which provides such marvellous shade or from down at the pool. I absolutely loved early morning walks up to Castligioncello del Trinoro where the staff were always very friendly and it was possible to get coffee and a pastry on the terrace with the spectacular view back down over the house. We were also fortunate enough to catch one of the concerts there – quite amazing – such an astonishing quality of musician performing without charge to the audience and in such an intimate venue.

One of our guests and myself are keen walkers so we also enjoyed walking through the woods above the property to La Foce (War in Val D’Orcia is such an interesting read if you have visited the area).

The house itself was very comfortable and we all loved the fact that it felt like such a home – several of us are avid readers and would have loved to be able to read Italian as just seeing the depth and range of books was amazing. The kitchen was very well equipped and we ate in a great deal but we had a good dinner at Santa Chiara in Sarteano, a wonderful lunch at Osteria La Porta in Monticchiello and a very good casual lunch in Radicofani.

Above all though we would all like to say a huge thank you to Gelasio who was such a kindly and humble presence throughout the week – our Italian was almost non-existent as is his English so I was constantly anxious that when we tried to ask him something we sent him to a paroxysm of anxiety, however, he communicated particularly well with one of our number who is a wonderful listener and a great gardener and I will never forget him bringing her a wonderful basket of figs – so beautifully presented with the basket all lined with fig leaves.

We would love to come again!

E.H. and friends, UK staying in Valdorcia. Dec 2017
Valdorcia

Valdorcia

We had a great time at Valdorcia

We had a great time at Valdorcia, and could not fault the house. In particular, the owner Matteo and his wife were very helpful in showing us around on arrival. The housekeeper, Gelasio, was around most of the time but we didn’t find this intrusive. Despite the language barrier, we were just about able to communicate with Gelasio when needed. The gardens were really well kept and the views across the valley were fantastic.

The house is along a rough steep track, about 1 mile off the main road. This was not an issue for us but might be worth warning people about this.

We ate out at Ristorante Santa Chiara in nearby Sarteano which we would recommend. Good food and service in an interesting location of an ex convent.

Mr. P.C. with family and friends, UK staying in Valdorcia. Jun 2016
San Michele

San Michele

Absolutely amazing

San Michele was absolutely amazing, the grounds were incredible and so well kept, pool area superb, hosts so helpful and two delicious meals with them and vegetables from their veggie patch. Plus a tour of their wine cellar, quite something else. The layout of the villa suited us all so well, plenty of room to have our own space! The 18 month old loved going to see the animals in the morning and evening. Great value for money.

C.W. and family staying in San Michele. Feb 2018
San Michele

San Michele

We were very happy and satisfied with our stay

We were very happy and satisfied with our stay at San Michele. The beauty of the place and friendly welcome from Patricia made us feel so at home. We enjoyed Arezzo, shopping in Pam and some restaurants in town. We found an interesting steakhouse called Mama Mia! No pizza for kids but there's 🍝. A shopping center with Decathlon and Coop grocery store had nice selection of food and drinks. An outlet 29 km direction Sienna had good selection of brand in clothings, shoes and more.

A.T. and family staying in San Michele. Mar 2017
San Michele

San Michele

We had a wonderful time at San Michele!

We had a wonderful time at San Michele! The property itself is wonderful. We enjoyed the building itself which worked very well for our extended-family group. We loved walking the gardens and visiting the animals and our hosts were terrific. It was also great that the train in Arezzo was so convenient for day trips. Even though we had a rental car, sometimes the train was easier than dealing with parking at our destination. Things we loved the most: Cooking class offered by Patrizia and Pietro – this was so much fun! We all loved the experience and the wonderful food! Trip to Florence by train Two great restaurants in Arezzo: Pappa e Cena (Via Romana, 133, 52100 Arezzo AR, Italy) and Osteria Dei Mercanti (Via di Ser Petraccolo, 52100 Arezzo AR, Italy)

The one tip we have, at least for American guests is to rent a car with automatic transmission. The road up the hill is steep and narrow in places and we were glad to have an automatic, even though we know how to drive a manual transmission.

H. F. and family staying in San Michele. Feb 2017
San Michele

San Michele

This is a house made to be enjoyed

I visited San Michele at the end of a long day's driving; I had been out seeing a lot of houses around Tuscany and was tired. The welcome that Patrizia and Pietro gave me, coupled with one of the best views I have ever seen and a swimming pool perfectly placed to take advantage of it soon gave me my energy back. This is a building on a site redolent with history, lovingly nursed back to life after decades of being hidden under brambles - ask P & P to show you the photographs of what the site looked like when they bought it! This is a house made to be enjoyed - there are myriad delights down in the plains toward Arezzo and in the hills beyond, but this is a place where I would want to just lie by the pool, relax and soak in the astounding view, day after day. A favourite!

D.W. staying in San Michele. Sep 2016
San Michele

San Michele

The villa was everything it should be

We stayed at San Michele in Arezzo in Autumn and just had a fabulous time. The villa was everything it should be. The rooms were large, the views were fantastic and our host and hostess were incredibly helpful and welcoming. There were two washing machines and drying racks. The pool was fantastic. Our hosts, Patrizia and Pietro did a wonderful homemade pizza dinner for us, another fabulous dinner in their cantina and also invited us to a private party in their home. The linens were changed weekly including our comforter. Softer and or extra pillows would be nice. The villa was at the top of a small mountain and overlooked the entire town. The directions to the villa on our GPS were great. It is narrow in places but we drove a large van that held seven and it is doable. There is also an electric gate to go through so you could not possibly feel safer. The air conditioning worked as well as american a/c but we didn't need it except for the first few days. We slept with the windows open and it was heavenly. Windows were screened, but we did not notice any flies or mosquitos while there. There is an absolutely amazing bakery not far from the villa called Panificio Pandemonio in Arezzo. Their almond biscotti, raisin coffeecake, and breads are unbeatable - Don't miss it. There is also a fabulous grocery store, Ipercoop, that matches any from the U.S. Go to the deli meat section and splurge. All those wonderful meats and cheeses are half the price you'd pay back home.

Ms. D.P. and family, USA staying in San Michele. Dec 2009
San Michele

San Michele

We had a fantastic stay at San Michele5

We had a fantastic stay at San Michele. It was a really special place and Patrizia and Pedro fantastic hosts! To be honest, we didn't venture far as it was so lovely there. Would happily recommend it to people and hope to return!

Mrs. R.T. and family, UK staying in San Michele. Feb 2016
San Michele

San Michele

...we loved staying at San Michele and know you will too!

Wow! On our recent visit we were amazed by the villa's setting, its breathtaking views, and the pool which shone like a gem in the night sky. We were impressed by the quality of the interior, especially its lovely linens and chic bathrooms. The pergola was a favourite spot where we enjoyed breakfasting and a fun pizza evening; we even ate some bits from the lovely vegetable garden as guests are invited to do. Patrizia and Pietro were perfect hosts at an incredible dinner in their wonderful home with a view you must see to believe - we loved staying at San Michele and know you will too!

L & L. staying in San Michele. Nov 2014
Vallevista

Vallevista

Perfectly cooked, seasoned Tuscan Joy

Vallevista provides a luxury, discreet and quiet home from home experience, nestled among sunflowers, European Oak and Italian Cypress trees. We found the views stunning, night skies wonderful, pool always kept clean and a perfect size for a family of five. Able to charge our car overnight. Maria Teresa, the owner of the estate, always on hand to help. A perfect holiday in a great location with everything on doorstep - even Venice for a day trip. A very special find.

Ben and family staying in Vallevista. Jul 2022