Vacation rentals in Italy (villas, farms, estates, agriturismo, apartments)
Review 140: TuscanHouse, Villa Fallerini
6 bed/4.5baths villa near Cetona, Tuscany South
Fall 2001, 1 week
My immediate family (5) plus 5 extended family members rented Villa Fallerini from September 8 through 15, 2001 -- followed by 5 days' stay in Florence. Villa Fallerini is a beautiful house in southern Tuscany about 2 kilometers from the village of Piazze and 15 minutes drive to Chiusi.
The villa is very private, but close to the village of Piazze and, therefore, is not too isolated. The setting is beautiful, with panoramic views of the countryside from most rooms of the house. Newly planted olive trees and natural woods surround the home and pool. One can walk (about 2 kilometers) to Piazze for conveniences - bakery, small groceries, bank, a few restaurants (Cafe Europa is especially friendly and has great pizza and deserts). Major shopping is about 15 minutes' drive.
The area is lovely and well-situated about 1.5 hours from Florence (15 minutes off the Autostrada), less than 1 hour to Siena, 40 minutes to Montepulciano, 30 minutes to Orvieto, etc. The setting is serene and quiet. You wake to morning sun pouring through the windows, with views the countryside marked by steam rising out of the earth from dozens of hot springs.
The house is very large (about 5000 square feet), with 6 huge bedrooms and 4.5 baths, and in perfect condition. The original part is stone, and subsequent additions are stone, brick, and stucco -- but the architecture is seamless and very historic. A large rock face from the original foundation still protrudes into the 3 story high wall of the newer living room.
The decor and furnishings are impeccable and worn with a comfortable patina. (The British owners, by the way, even called to make sure that everything was in order.) Most bedrooms (3 of 6) have private baths (3 "smaller" bedrooms in a private wing share a bath) that have wonderful tubs and large separate showers. The house has meticulous gardens and many sitting areas, a lovely pool with 2 large hammocks nearby, and even private porches accessed through French doors in 2 bedrooms.
The furnishings are comfortable and in great condition. Many are antique, and all are tasteful.
The kitchen is eat-in (accommodating 5) and adjacent to a dining room that seats 10 comfortably. It is very usable, and was well stocked with pots and pans, dishes, glassware, utensils, and at least 5 corkscrews! The kitchen houses a gas range, a small refrigerator, and a dishwasher. An adjoining pantry has a larger refrigerator, as well as a clothes washing machine (clothes are line dried, of course), ironing board, wine racks, etc. There is a 1/2 bath and mud room also off the kitchen.
Problems or Bonuses
No problems. Bonuses? You bet. The housekeeper, Marina, is truly lovely and speaks English (as well as Italian). She is attentive but never obtrusive. She baked us a cake and left a bottle of local wine for us upon our arrival. And she offers free massages -- a gift that (as she relates the story) she received from her father. She is to massage what Juliette Binoche was to chocolate.
Agency and Representatives (and price)
Zak at Tuscanhouse left nothing to chance, and remained always available to us throughout not only the booking process and our stay, but also afterward. Zak and I are already working on a month's rental for next year, and he is somebody that I trust without reservation. He constantly exceeded my highest expectations.
This review is the opinion of a Slow Travel member and not of slowtrav.com.
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