Vacation rentals in Italy (villas, farms, estates, agriturismo, apartments)
Review 351: Tuscan Enterprises, Rosmarino
2bed/1bath house near Castellina, Tuscany Chianti
October 2002, 1 week
The rental off a dirt road in the countryside, less than 10K north of Siena, and 6K from Castellina in Chianti, in easy reach of San Gimignano and Florence. It is a nice hillside location overlooking rustic olive groves and vineyards. There is only 1 house within sight of the front porch, and it is a very quiet and peaceful stone house.
There is a 4 star hotel nearby for telephone and breakfast and computer access. There is a small winery and olive oil producer also nearby which will sell you wine and olive oil. Castellina in Chianti is the nearest place for supplies. A car is required.
The building is a converted farm building and it is in very good shape. Stone walls, 2 stories, with 2 bedrooms upstairs (full beds) and the bath/kitchen/living room downstairs. The kitchen and bath are amply supplied. There are decks on the terraces surrounding the house which are ideal for sunsets and dining in good weather. The house can be very hot in the summer. A word of warning: there have been a couple of thefts here, but if you lock up the house well when you leave you will have no problems at all.
The terraces surrounding the house are pretty, rustic, and covered with olive and fruit trees. The decks around the house are great for sitting and gazing at Monterrigioni and Volterra in the far distance, with San Gimignano peeking through. This is a very private secluded location. A pool is at the hotel nearby if you are here in the summer.
The furnishings are basic but reasonable. There are only a few chairs in the living room. The beds are both full size. The house is very clean.
The beds are reasonably comfortable, and the bathroom is enormous by Italian standards. There is 1 shower, no bathtub.
The kitchen is fully functional and very nice. There is a half-refrigerator which worked just fine. The stove and range worked well. We cooked several meals in the kitchen and enjoyed it very much.
Problems or Bonuses
Previous thefts in past years were a surprise. It appears the victims left the house unattended and unlocked. Nobody who locked up the house reported a theft. There were no attempts at breaking in while people were in the house. No thefts were reported in the past year. The hotel next door was very nice, but one of the staff was unfriendly towards us as we were not guests. The rest of the staff was very nice and helpful though so we just ignored her. They serve a very large buffet breakfast for $10. Internet access is $1/15 minutes, and local phone calls are $0.30.
Agency and Representatives (and price)
The agency was fine. I tried to confirm my reservation with them before I left but they didn't respond to email. No matter; the onsite person left a note for us and she came prompty. She spoke no English, but made herself understood clearly with rudimentary italian.
Do you recommend this vacation rental to others?
I recommend this vacation rental, and would stay here again. We liked the privacy and seclusion of our little house in Italy without rubbing elbows with lots of other tourists. There are prettier and nicer places you could rent, but none have the privacy and the location is excellent.
Things to do in this area
Castellina has a couple of fine restaurants. Siena has numerous fine restaurants and shopping. There are dozens of excellent Chianti Classico wineries in the area, including many premium wineries. San Gimignano is close by. Florence is an easy day trip away.
This review is the opinion of a Slow Travel member and not of slowtrav.com.
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