Vacation rentals in Italy (villas, farms, estates, agriturismo, apartments)
Review 4167: Peralta, Pipistrelli & Gemelli
apartments/houses in restored hamlet near Camaiore, Tuscany North
October 2005 and May 2009, 1 week
Peralta is a tiny hamlet in the hills above the small town of Camaiore. It was restored in the late 1960's and there are seven homes and apartments available for rent, plus five rooms for bed and breakfast. The situation is unique. There are no roads (you walk in to Peralta along a path which winds through an olive grove) and therefore it is very quiet and secluded. The views from the terraces are breathtaking; on a clear day you can see as far as the coast at Viareggio.
The nearest shops are in Camaiore, which is about 20 minutes away by car. You can walk to a couple of local villages on the footpaths that wind through the hills, but you do really need a car.
The first time we stayed at Peralta we rented Pipistrelli. This is a detached house with a living/dining/kitchen, bedroom and bathroom. There were a couple of rooms above it that could be rented out for bed and breakfast and one was occupied for two nights whilst we were there, but we weren't disturbed by any noise from it. It was adequately furnished and comfortable.
The second time we stayed we rented Gemelli which is on the top floor of one of the buildings above the dining room. We had amazing views from the bedroom and living room windows. It also had a living and dining room and kitchen, bedroom and bathroom, and was also very comfortable.
We enjoyed sitting out on the patio in Pipistrelli (and another seating area) and looking out at the views. We had a small patio at Gemelli which looked out to the olive terraces above. There is a swimming pool at Peralta which is shared by all the guests and is reached by walking up through the hamlet along narrow stone pathways and up steps. This is another area with magnificent views over the valley below.
The houses in Peralta are all built of old stone, so they have a certain 'rustic' look, but they are very comfortable, and roomy. The furnishings are good and both both rentals were clean.
The beds were very comfortable and the bathrooms were good - plenty of hot water.
The kitchens in both rentals were small, but once again adequate. I cooked each night during both our visits and had no problems.
Problems or Bonuses
Peralta is an amazing place. It's a unique experience and it's hard to describe. From the moment you walk in along the path through the olive groves you feel as if you've entered another world away from the pressures of everyday life. On our first visit there we would sit on the terrace in front of the bar (uniquely, in this day and age, you help yourself to what ever you want from the bar and write it down in a little book and you pay at the end of your stay!) and we would see the look of delight on the faces of newly arrived guests as they took in the view.
Agency and Representatives (and price)
The team that manages Peralta are lovely. Because they worked for the artist that restored it, until she died a few years ago, they are very concerned with keeping the unique flavor of the place. There is always someone there to help you.
Do you recommend this vacation rental to others?
We love Peralta. I would be there at this very minute if I could. We have stayed at many places in Italy and this is a very unique and different experience.
Things to do in this area
We didn't dine out on either of our visits. There are walks through the hills to local villages if you don't want to drive, and if you do, you can visit Camaiore for a morning coffee. We also drove to Lucca, which is a wonderful walled town and to Carrara to see the marble quarries. There is an iron foundry at Pietrasanta, which we haven't visited yet (next time!)
This review is the opinion of a Slow Travel member and not of slowtrav.com.
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