Vacation rentals in Italy (villas, farms, estates, agriturismo, apartments)
Review 1676: Le Manzinaie, Apartment
apartments on an estate near Montepulciano, Tuscany South
August 2005, 1 week
Le Manzinaie was situated in a quiet rural area just outside the small village of Montepulciano Stazione and not far from the picturesque hill town of Montepulciano. It is set in its own bestifully tended grounds and surrounded by fields of sunflowers, corn and vinyards. Even though it was very peaceful, it was also near to the main motorway and train line linking Florence and Rome and was an ideal base for exploring the region.
There are a number of restaurants and a shop in walking distance and plenty of villages only a short drive away.
The main building is a converted farmhouse from the 1800s with 3 apartments for 2 people and 2 for 4 people/families. It was fully booked when we stayed, but didn't feel at all crowded - we thought we were the only guests at first!
The grounds was very well presented and maintained with the bonus of a very well stocked vegetable garden and fruit orchard which all guests are free to harvest as they like. There were ample seating areas for eating or relaxing and an excellent swimming pool with plenty of sunbeds and umbrellas for all guests.
The apartments were very well equipped and spotlessly clean. Ours was the smallest but was plenty big enough for the 2 of us.
The four poster bed was very comfortable and the room stayed cool (no air conditioning as it is unnecessary) even in the height of summer. The bathroom was large with double sinks, jacuzzi bath, power shower and bidet (for washing your feet of course!). The family apartments had 2 bathrooms.
The kichen was excellently equipped - everything was great quality - the best self catering facilities I've ever had on holiday. There are all the usuals plus a few extras like a coffee maker and the hob has 4 gas rings. There is no oven or grill inside the apartment, but intead there is a BBQ area set up to use as you like outside for trad Tuscan grills.
Problems or Bonuses
Le Manzinaie is a great place to stay for any number of reasons - but what makes it exceptional is the care and attention you receive from the family who own and run the place. They are warm, friendly, and endlessly helpful while at the same time they respect your privacy. They obviously love having guests to stay - and make you feel like honorary members of their family rather than paying customers - even to the extent of hosting a weekly complimentary Tuscan feast for everyone (which is a great way to break the ice with the other visitors).
The little touches like the wonderful vegetable garden and having mountain bikes available to borrow also make this place special.
Fiore (the father and man of the house) also cooks a mean Bistecca Fiorentina on the BBQ.
Agency and Representatives (and price)
We made an intial enquiry through a website and then dealt with the family directly to confirm the booking. The couple, Marzia and Fiore speak English to a good level and their 18 year old daughter, Alice is fluent in both English and French. We paid around £500 for a week which was excellent value for money.
Do you recommend this vacation rental to others?
Best place we've ever stayed - we've never gone back to the same place twice and holiday at least twice a year all over Europe and beyond, but we are seriously considering going back to here, as are some members of our family based on our recommendation.
Things to do in this area
All of the Southern Tuscan countryside and hill-towns (with their lovely food and wines) are on your doorstep here. Both Florence and Rome are only 1-1.5 hours away by both road and rail.
We didn't end up eating in any of the local restaurants as we cooked for ourselves using all the great food from the garden most evenings, but other guests ate out and said the local restaurants were all good quality and value.
This review is the opinion of a Slow Travel member and not of slowtrav.com.
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