Vacation rentals in Italy (villas, farms, estates, agriturismo, apartments)
Review 776: Agriturismo La Creta, Il Sambuco
apartments on an estate near Montepulciano, Tuscany South
late September 2003, One week
La Creta is located a few kilometers outside of Montepulciano, right on the main road connecting Pienza and Montepulciano. It is extremely well located for touring these southern Tuscan towns. It was in a quiet location with views of Pienza, Montefollonico, and Montepulciano. The owners live upstairs and have two apartments on the ground floor for renting out. Very quiet and peacful and the young owners (no children) were so quiet we didn't even know that they were there.
We woke up to the sounds of church bells from Montepulciano and the sheep moving about the pasture every morning. The building itself is at the end of a gravel driveway and is located close to the highly respected and delicious Cugusi pecorino cheese factory. One did have to be careful as there is a lot of traffic on the driveway as people were coming and going from buying pecorino right at the Cugusi fattoria. One also had to be careful so as not to drive over one of the 4 dogs that live at La Creta!
It would be about a 3 km hike into Montepulciano one way but there is a great market one day each week and also a Conaad market. We did not have any problems finding parking spots on any of our trips into town.
The building appears to be in good shape. Our apartment, Il Sambuco, was located on one side of the building while the other larger apartment was on the other side. I don't think that the building is very old.
Seating area was very nice, looking out unto the nearby towns with San Biagio in the foreground. Each apartment had its own outdoor table, lounge chairs, and clotheslines. There is no pool.
Furniture was in good shape with four dining chairs around a small marble topped table in the kitchen. We had a small TV and a sofa also.
Bed was comfortable with lamps on each nightstand and a large armoire at the foot of the bed. The bathroom was well lit and spacious, one of the biggest showers I have used in an agriturismo of this price range! Plenty of water pressure and hot water.
The kitchen was modern with good dishes and pans for cooking although we did buy a cutting board at the market. We made several meals in the kitchen. Plenty of counter space too. The refrigerator door was not sealing well, it didn't appear to be leaking water but the refrigerator itself seemed to be running a lot. Other than the fridge needing a door replacement/adjustment we were happy with the modern clean kitchen.
Problems or Bonuses
Cristina did not know a lot of English but was very nice and helpful. She made us a wonderful blueberry torte our first morning and left it outside our door. What a lovely surprise. The furnishings were not extravagant but were suitable.
Email correspondance took a bit longer since La Creta does not have its own website, listing only through the Nautilus website which lists properties where you rent through the owner. Note: subsequent to this review, La Creta created their own website. You can find it above.
Agency and Representatives (and price)
We rented directly through the owner who used a translation service to send us emails. The information we had received about the place matched the actual apartment well. La Creta is also listed with the Terre Toscana agency for a higher price. We paid €350 for a week in mid season price range in late September 2003. No security deposit or extra cleaning fee was collected. I had paid the entire fee with a bank transfer prior to arrival.
Do you recommend this vacation rental to others?
We would stay here again. It was quaint, the kitchen and bathrooms were quite clean, efficient, and modern and the views were excellent. It is very easy to travel to the main towns of Southern Tuscany. We enjoyed our week here.
Things to do in this area
Some of my favorite things to do in the area are shopping for linens in San Quirico d'Orcia and Montechiello; sampling pecorino in Pienza, visiting the cantines in Montepulciano (a wonderful tour and tasting at Villa Sant Anna).
Eating at La Porta in Montecchiello, Osteria del Leone in Bagno Vignoni, La Locanda di Fonte alla Vena in San Quirico d'Orcia.
This review is the opinion of a Slow Travel member and not of slowtrav.com.
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