Vacation rentals in Italy (villas, farms, estates, agriturismo, apartments)
Review 915: Il Bacio, Apartment
apartments on an estate near Tavernelle Val Di Pesa, Tuscany Chianti
June 5 - 12, 2004
Il Bacio is a very peaceful agriturismo located about 3 km from the town of Tavernelle Val Di Pesa. It is a working farm producing organic olive oil and Chianti wine. There are a total of 5 apartments on the farm, all close together, sharing a common pool, but each having a separate pergola to eat under outside by their own apartments. It is separated from other farms by about 1 km at the closest. The whole area is very lush and green, full of trees and gentle rolling hills.
No nearby place to walk for groceries or coffee. However, the town was a few minutes away by car where there are all stores necessary.
The building itself appears somewhat old, perhaps 80+ years, the apartments are made from a renovated farmhouse and barn. These conversions appear quite new, perhaps less than 10 years ago.
Yes, private sitting area outside each apartment with a shaded pergola. Also a shared pool with 5 sets of umbrellas and beach chairs for each apartment. Each pergola had a picnic table and chairs as well.
Apartment was very clean except for a few spiders found in corners. Made hubby smush them. Furniture was in decent shape. A small futon type of sofa, a little worn, but clean, and a dining table and 2 chairs.
Our bed was 2 twin mattresses pushed together. Mine was firm, but hubby's was a little on the soft side. Bathroom was nice, with good water pressure, shower was tad on the small side - it was a corner shower with 2 sliding doors to push together to form a sealed rectangle. Bidet present but was not used. More than adequate plumbing. Sink was large enough to do laundry in.
The kitchen was really more of a kitchenette. There was a stove, with 3 gas and 1 electric burner. Only 2 of the burners functioned. No oven, no microwave, no dishwasher (I don't know if those these are common or not in agriturismo kitchens). One sink, 1 refrigerator, and 1 toaster oven, and 1 toaster. There were 3 pots of varying sizes, and unfortunately, only 1 frying pan. Plentiful dishware and utensils. I enjoyed cooking in the kitchen in part because it was a little bit of a challenge to get back to cooking simply instead of having a lot of fancy appliances. Also, since we had more time, we could cook more slowly. This kitchen was good for cooking simple meals for 2-3 people. But usually we managed a pasta, salad and a meat dish without difficulty.
Problems or Bonuses
At first, I was rather irritated with the small kitchen, but then after I accepted it, it was a fun challenge to try to cook as I am sure my grandmother's generation did. Simply, with fresher ingredients.
Agency and Representatives (and price)
I booked directly with the owner online. However at the agriturismo dealt mostly with her son Andrea who speaks extremely good English. I was surprised that he spoke so well without having lived in an English speaking country before. I had received pictures of the agriturismo and apartment online before I booked, and it accurately reflected the place. We paid 520 Euro including all electricity and cleaning, linens, etc for the 2nd week in June.
Do you recommend this vacation rental to others?
I absolutely would stay here again. I think that it is a very charming, well run place, and the owners take good care of their apartments. They even left a bottle of wine at each house and fresh cut flowers on everyone's dining table and picnic table as a welcome. I think it is an ideal place for a simple vacation. If you need television, internet, and a phone line, and a stainless steel kitchen this is not the place for you. However, it was a perfect getaway from NYC. There were 2 Swedish families with small children, 1 older British couple, and another couple around our age (late 20s, early 30s) from the Netherlands.
Things to do in this area
The only local restaurant we went to was the Ristorante La Fattoria. (We cooked a lot.) They had a good wine selection, and excellent primi courses. I had the ribolitta, and hubby had a very delicatey light gnocci with pomodoro sauce. Their secondi was not as good, my roast suckling pig was too dry; hubby's veal with truffles was better. However, supposedly they are well known for their Val di Chiana beef; however we did not try this. Their insalata mista was very good, crisp fresh lettuces. We had 2 glasses of the '98 Rossi di Montalcino-Banfi, very good and fruity. All told around 65 Euro for 2. A bit pricey for the quality of the food. Good atmosphere, pleasant seating area outside. Not one I would go out of my way to send people to, but decent enough.
This review is the opinion of a Slow Travel member and not of slowtrav.com.
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