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Reviewed 19 June 2016

This is the quintessential Tuscan villa. Can be booked as one huge villa on two floors or just book one floor (upstairs) for a group or (main floor) for a couple. 7

Grounds were beautiful and extensive. Lots of place to sit and lounge under the Tuscan sun. Kitchen was fully equipped with modern amenities. A bathroom for each bedroom! The entire villa was spotless.

The hosts were welcoming and offered different kinds of dining experiences, if interested.

We were sad to leave, but will be back.

  • Stayed: October 2015, travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
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Thank ociwoman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 May 2016

Just returned to U.S. after having spent six days at this most FANTASTIC property. We rented the entire villa and really enjoyed the privacy it allowed us, both inside and out.

The outside is everything you imagine a Tuscan villa to be. As you enter through the private gate and down the gravel drive (exquisitely lit at night), the villa slowly becomes visible just before you bear right to the small parking area near the the late 19th century tool shed. Then a short walk down a rock paved lead brings you to the gorgeous property. Stop. Drink it in. Take a deep breath, and remind yourself: this is not a dream!

There are three outdoor sitting areas. The largest seats probably 8-10 people and overlooks the vineyard. The view from this patio is spectacular! (This is the patio with the oval table pictured on the website.) The smallest of the three is just outside the dining room door and may have been my favorite. It too overlooks the vineyard, but is small and quaint. (This is the white iron table and chairs, pictured on the website.) We enjoyed coffee and mimosas, not to mention the sounds of nature, in this spot almost every morning.

The inside is, in our opinion, even more charming. From the old wood doors to the old wooden windows and shutters, from the hardware on those doors and windows to the tile floors and what used to be an old trough that runs the entire length of the living and dining room (on the first floor--obviously!), the property has been meticulously restored and refurbished. The beauty of this property is simply breathtaking. It truly is.

From the villa we drove up and down 408 to a number of fine castles and wineries. And I suspect we only scratched the surface of wineries during our six days. Driving is not for the faint of heart, however. The roads twist and wend their way around like I have never experienced, with precipitous drop offs. And they are narrow, with motorcyclists and trucks speeding around the hairpin turns at breakneck speeds and unapologetically crossing the center line. I thought it was fun; my wife....not so much.

Finally, a word about the family who owns the property. They are kind, generous and remarkably good people. Like many other visitors, we got lost on our way. (Tip: When you receive directions to the villa from Ducchio, follow them and only them. Somehow we pulled up the wrong map, which will get you there, but take you on the A1 through toll portions, which you do NOT want to do!! Trust me!!). Just be sure to exit where Ducchio's directions tell you to exit, and follow from there. At any rate, Ducchio and Enzo (his dad) ended up driving 20 minutes out of their way to meet us in Gaiole and lead us to the villa. But, if you follow the directions provided, you will not get lost. (Tip #2: I do advise using voice navigation on your mobile phone to get around. Especially if you plan to drive into Sienna or visit San Gimignano or Florence. The roundabouts are tricky and the signs are too small to afford reading as you're driving.)

I am already planning our next visit, this time with our children (I hope), during an upcoming sabbatical.

Any negatives? Hardly. The mattresses and bed linens were not as comfortable as they might have been, but hardly worth complaining about.

Tip #3: If you will arrive at night or late afternoon, I would take advantage of the owners' offer to purchase a few things for you and have them waiting upon your arrival. Cheese, a bottle of wine, some fresh bread and olive oil. (The olive oil in this region is second to none. We found ourselves repeatedly raving about just how good it was. Nothing in the states compares.) And perhaps eggs, oatmeal and milk for the next morning. We were so exhausted from the flights and drive that we had no desire to go anywhere else, upon arrival, but we also had nothing to eat or drink in the villa. So, I highly recommend having a few things waiting for you.

Bottom line: trust me; if you rent this place, you won't be disappointed. It exceeded our expectations on every possible level.

Room Tip: This isn't a hotel; hence my answers above.
  • Stayed: May 2016, travelled as a couple
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Thank Kevin C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 May 2016

When you think of a Tuscan villa, this is what you want. We could hardly believe it when we first saw it, it is just so beautiful. And we were so warmly and hospitably welcomed by the owners! Not only is the villa itself just absolutely beautiful and comfortable and well appointed, but the setting is as well, with a gorgeous patio overlooking the hills. This is one of those rare places that is actually even better than it looks online! We were a group of four, and stayed in the upstairs portion. It is possible to open the whole place to a group of ten, which is what we would like to do if we get to return. No question that if we are able to come back we will not even look for another place, we will be staying here. Beautiful and peaceful beyond description.

  • Stayed: April 2016, travelled as a couple
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Thank Tabsy2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 September 2015

My husband and I just returned from the first two weeks of September, for the second year in a row. Mom, sister and brother in law are lucky enough to be spending the whole month. We have, as a family, already booked for next September.

I can't even begin to describe just what a wonderful experience this is. The owners Enzo and Liliana, and their sons, Max and Duccio, could not be more welcoming and gracious. They make you feel at home and can't do enough for you. We enjoyed a meal prepared by the boys and Enzo that was to die for, antipasto, 5 different pasta courses from different regions, wines to complement each and dolci to finish.

The villa itself is spectacular, secluded and quiet. Driving through the gates and down the long drive to your first view of the villa is breathtaking. A car is a must but navigating wasn't difficult with GPS or an app like Copilot. Comfort is assured in every spacious room and Liliana's attention to the decor is spot on. Furnishings are both comfortable and elegant at the same time. Everything is spotlessly clean, kitchen, bathrooms and bedrooms. With their beautiful wooden shutters the bedrooms are pitch black at night, perfect for a good night's sleep. But if you want a bit of light you can leave one ajar. I think the outdoor living spaces are one of the things I love the most, with beautiful patios and views of vineyards and olive orchards. Sitting in the early morning with an espresso or in the evening with a glass of wine or Limoncelo is as relaxing as it gets. We saw deer just about every day, and at night heard owls, foxes and wild boar as they made their way past the villa.

Located in the little village of Pianella is a small market that was convenient but for better prices the supermarket, Pam, in Sienna near the train station is a short drive away.

The area abounds with vineyards, quaint old towns and castles. Pick any direction and you soon be driving into the "heart" of Chianti, and often a weekly market in the towns. I especially enjoyed San Gusme and the story of Luca. Sienna and il Campo make for an enjoyable afternoon. Within 10-20 minutes are numerous trattoria, restaurants etc. The tour at Castle Brolio and the accompanying meal were a treat.We never had a bad meal eating out and enjoyed cooking several meals in the well appointed kitchen, as well as grilling outdoors over a charcoal/wood fire. We never needed a fire in one of the fireplaces as the weather was mild but maybe next year we'll have a chilly day and get to enjoy one.

I can't say enough in praise of the villa and it's owners. And I'm already counting the days until next September's stay (which will be for the whole month this time!)

  • Stayed: September 2015, travelled with family
    • Value
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1  Thank Elizabethcaraco
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 August 2014

We were received by the family who owns this house and you can see from the first minute that these people breath hospitality and care for their customers.
We stayed as a family with 2 small childres (6 and 2) on the ground floor house/appartment, La Mangiatoia.
It is a very spacious place with two nice bedrooms and a shared bathroom/toilet. The living and dining room is very spacious as is the kitchen which by the way has a very big refrigerator and freezer. Upon arrival the house was in tip top condition and perfectly cleaned and prepared for us.
The views from the balcony outside are fantastic. Excellent to have breakfast in the morning and dinners in the evening with a nice glass of wine.
There is also another terrace just right from the apartment with very comfortable chairs and large table.
We were lucky that the other apartment (which we've seen inside as well upon invitation by the owners, looks fantastic also) was not occupied for most of our stay that week. Only the two last days we stayed there, they received visitors from the USA. Very nice and friendly people.
However, and this let me say is the only "negative"; if you insist on your sole privacy, make sure you rent the whole house (so both apartments) since otherwise you run into your neighbors inevitably at the shared terraces and garden around the house.

All in all we had a fantastic stay and the area around the house allows for beautiful day trips and exploration of various kinds. I would definitely come again to this house but as said, would need to rent it completely with a few couples.

For those in need for internet connection, the wifi works very well all around and in the house and rooms. It costs 5 EUR per day but it's worth it.

Room Tip: if you travel with small children (2 year old in our case) suggest you take the bottom apartment without the stairs. The stone stairs look fantastic in the other apartment but could present a danger for smaller children.
  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled with family
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Thank MarcoH_11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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