Vacation rentals in Italy (villas, farms, estates, agriturismo, apartments)
Review 2691: Rentvillas, Villa Certaldo
3bed/3bath house near Certaldo, Tuscany Chianti
March, 2007, 2 weeks
This lovely 16th century renovated villa sits on a hill overlooking magnificent Tuscany countryside just 10 minutes from the town of Certaldo, where one can catch the train for a one-hour ride into Florence or Siena, or longer trips to anywhere in Italy I suppose. The villa is attached to a larger villa occupied by the owners (he Italian and she American and their young son) who are gracious hosts who also respect your privacy.
A car is necessary for dining or grocery shopping, although the villa provides bicycles one can ride to nearby towns or through the countryside.
The villa was originally built in the 16th century and has been remodeled to thoroughly modern and American tastes, with new appliances and every comfort of home. It is wonderfully peaceful, with the sounds of the countryside drifting up through the balcony windows. The owners are just completing the remodel of another, smaller villa, with a swimming pool, just next door in one of the other original buildings.
Two pools. A lovely porch for lunch or reading, and a wonderful balcony off of the master bedroom. Small courtyards, front and back, for enjoying the out of doors.
This is a beautiful home, exquisitely and comfortably decorated and furnished, immaculately clean, and perfected suited for six adults and/or children (including accommodations for disability if required).
We slept like babies, awakening to the fresh Tuscan air and morning sun drifting in through the open windows. Each bedroom has a full, and very large and well-equipped bath. The women in our family loved the bathrooms, and the spacious tubs in two of the baths.
This kitchen had everything we needed, including modern appliances, an American coffee and espresso maker, all the necessary pots and pans, pleasant crockery, sharp knives, and most important in Tuscany -- three corkscrews! We enjoyed preparing several wonderful meals in this kitchen, and appreciated the dishwasher afterwards.
Problems or Bonuses
The owners were warm and gracious, respectful of our privacy and yet welcoming and friendly as your best next-door neighbor. Anything we needed, they provided or helped us find it.
We appreciated not only the washer and dryer, but also the accompanying laundry soap and drying racks.
A cell phone and easy dial-up Internet connection was provided, along with cable television and DVD player.
We had no bad surprises, except how quickly our time there came to an end.
Agency and Representatives (and price)
Barbara from Rentvillas was professional, accurate, and very helpful. In our experience, pictures and written descriptions usually show a property's best side, and while the pictures and descriptions of this property were lovely, the reality is even better -- a Tuscan fantasy more than fulfilled!
Do you recommend this vacation rental to others?
We enjoyed our two weeks at Villa Certaldo with our adult children enormously, and are planning to return in March 09. We have already recommended it to friends, and one is planning to be there in the fall.
Things to do in this area
Wilma's Ristorante, a small family-run restaurant about 15 minutes down our winding country road became a favorite for our family.
We went into Certaldo and took day trips on the train four times (Florence, Pisa, and Siena) -- just perfect and very easy.
The hill towns of Monteriggioni and San Gimignano, both 30-minutes away, were wonderful places to have lunch and enjoy the beauty (and even the shopping) of Tuscany.
This review is the opinion of a Slow Travel member and not of slowtrav.com.
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