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Rated Excellent By Trip Advisor

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Property Details

Sleeps:
8 - 10
Single Bedrooms:
0
Double Bedrooms:
4
Bathrooms:
3
Type:
Apartment
Property #:
16772
Nearest Town:
Altopascio

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Reviews of Farmhouse Accommodation in Tuscany

La Corte 1

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Customer Reviews

Overall:
Relaxing and tranquil. Lovely location. Very clean.
Enjoyed Most:
The outdoors was lovely but the pool was not very clean.
Enjoyed Least:
Communication at check in was difficult.
Surrounding Area:
Easy drive to local attractions like Lucca, Florence etc.
Nearby Events or Locales:
Orentano was within walking distance.
Tips or Restaurants:
Bring mosquito repellent.
Directions:
Directions were good; didnt need GPS.

Sue, September

Overall:
Great!
Enjoyed Most:
The grounds were fantastic - pool, tennis courts, etc
Enjoyed Least:
Sharing the pool and grounds with other people.
Surrounding Area:
Day trips into all of the surrounding towns, including our nearby town Altopascio.
Tips or Restaurants:
Place was very well-stocked but had a hard time finding coffee filters - had to use the coffee machine because the espresso one was grimy.
Directions:
Used a map.
Check In Out:
Had to wait an hour to check in, even though we arrived after 5:00 PM.

Eric, August

Overall:
Six of us were very pleasantly surprised with the quality, the size of the villa, and the rooms. It's a ten-minute walk to town and yet very quiet.
Enjoyed Most:
The bedrooms were quite large and the common area was huge and tastefully decorated.
Surrounding Area:
A good-sized pool and tennis court plus large grounds to wander.
Nearby Events or Locales:
Orentano was a 10-minute walk
Directions:
Used a GPS.

Rob , September

Overall:
Simply sensational time in Tuscany made all the more possible due to our home base at this villa. We had family members from all over North America stay with us and all agreed it was one of the best vacation spots ever.
Enjoyed Most:
The quiet solitude was a definite highlight. No cars we could hear and nary a wire or power line to disturb the illusion of timeless peace. Birds chirping in the middle of the night and hundreds of fireflies. Our kids loved it! The grounds are significant and even with the adjoining units booked you have a sense of solitude. There was more than enough room for everyone.
Enjoyed Least:
I guess if we must nit-pick. The usual hard beds but hey, this is Europe--it's not so unusual. The Internet connection and television were dubious at best but we wanted to go "off the grid" anyhow. The pool is not heated which is not surprising however it is interesting that there is an unheated Jacuzzi.
Surrounding Area:
Lucca is positively charming. We went four times and we loved it so. Proximity to Florence, Pisa, San Gimignano and even Siena is a bonus. Don't miss out on lovely Vinci and its towering view of the countryside. Nearby Altopascio even has its charms if you look for it off the beaten path. If you drive south towards Bientina there are fields of joyous sunflowers as far as the eye can see. Okay that's enough, you pretty much turn any corner, drive/walk in any direction, and you will be amazed.
Nearby Events or Locales:
Orentano has a population of 850 and they are all lovely. The restaurants were wonderful and the gelateria in town was our favorite hangout to watch the Euro cup games and for the kids to play fusbal. Quiet, quaint where one feels instantly at home. We hoped Orentano was within walking distance but it's a 20 to 30 minute walk (did it twice) and given the narrow road and heat it's impractical. Also, there's no economical way to get to the Altopascio train station and grocery store (Conad or Pam) so a car is a must when renting here.
Tips or Restaurants:
Some previous renters mention stocks of goods when they arrived. Alas I believe this is subject to the previous renters and what they leave behind. We had to rush to the store for toilet paper and then, at a more leisurely pace, provide everything needed for the kitchen from spices, to olive oil to dishwashing detergent, etc. As a suggestion to future travelers: get lost. Meander the grounds, lose yourself in obscure narrow alleyways or turn the GPS off once in a while. You won't regret it.
Directions:
The street itself is not difficult to find. It's the lane leading to the villa which is quite difficult to locate. Small sign is hidden behind another. Lane looks like a cow path leading to nowhere as the villa cannot be seen from the roadway. Better signage is recommended.
Check In Out:
The caretakers were wonderful and very helpful.

Jean-yves, June

Overall:
It was a a relaxing, luxurious getaway.
Enjoyed Most:
We loved everything about the villa itself! It was beautifully landscaped, sumptuously furnished, and had a lovely layout. The kitchen had everything we wanted for cooking simple meals, and more that we did not use. The pool was beautiful (if a bit cool, in May). There were comfortable chairs and chaises everywhere plenty of places to congregate and also plenty of places to have alone time.
Enjoyed Least:
A bulletin board with notices about additional potential charges and instructions: the security deposit, cleaning fees, instructions about how to strip the beds, where to leave the linens, and utility fees. These extra costs should be included in the rental fee.
Surrounding Area:
Some of the beautiful smaller roads were charming, and we found that the Autostrada got us where we wanted to go quickly. We explored Orvieto en route to the villa, and Lucca, Florence, Pisa, the beach near Pisa and Siena during a leisurely week at the villa. If we had been ambitious, it would have been easy to see more, but we were busy enjoying the villa!
Nearby Events or Locales:
Orentano was walking distance. Altopascio, a few kilometers away, had everything we needed.
Tips or Restaurants:
We arrived on a Saturday evening and learned that all stores would be closed shortly. It might be helpful to suggest that people bring supplies for the first 24 hours with them if they arrive close to 19:00. We appreciated the suggestion on the bulletin board about where to buy good bread, but, sadly, never found good bread (even at that bakery.) Next trip we will avoid bread and concentrate on the many other delicious foods that abound.
Directions:
We did not use a GPS. A map was very helpful.
Check In Out:
We did not have telephones with us, and had to rely on other guests at the complex to contact Paula so we could get into the villa. Fortunately, she and her husband were around at times, so we could ask them about the few minor problems that arose.

Kate, June

Overall:
Fantastic.
Enjoyed Most:
The backyard and peacefulness.
Nearby Events or Locales:
It was not within walking distance, but was very nice.

John And Mary Kay, May

Overall:
The overall experience was wonderful. It's spacious and well appointed. The location is excellent. We enjoyed being able to have breakfast and supper there after a day of touring.
Enjoyed Most:
Almost everything, but the grounds are spectacular.
Enjoyed Least:
We had a few issues which were easily fixed. As others have reported, the mattresses were hard...by mid-week they became uncomfortable. The WiFi, which is not advertised, took until Thursday to set up. Also, I had no sheets and towels until then...apparently a miscommunication. The weather was not good (raining and cold) and there was very little dry firewood. We were not able to get the heat working until later in the week and the power went out.
Surrounding Area:
The grounds and small towns are delightful and close for marketing; Lucca was a special favorite. We also explored Greve-in-Chianti and a winery estate, Siena, Pisa, and the coastal area
Nearby Events or Locales:
Orentano is within walking distance but we did not do that because of the weather.
Check In Out:
The owner was not present, but her friends were very nice and helpful. However, we felt a written set of instructions would have been helpful, such as how to manage the heat, location of the fuse box, where to get firewood, best ways to reach the owner if needed, etc. Also, it would have been good to know how to get the WiFi connected in a timely manner.

Suzanne, April

Overall:
Superb. A beautiful location relatively close to many of the cities/towns we wished to visit. And a beautiful well-kept property. Accommodations were wonderful.
Enjoyed Most:
Quality of the accommodations and property location.
Enjoyed Least:
Mattresses in bedrooms were inadequate. We found them to lack support.
Surrounding Area:
Beauty of the countryside and proximity to desired sites.
Nearby Events or Locales:
Orentano. Though theoretically within walking distance, from a practical point of view it would have been a bit difficult because of the traffic.
Tips or Restaurants:
From our perspective, a car is a must to realistically visit the area. The sign for the property is rather small and can be missed pretty easily. Drove past it initially.

Daniel, October

Overall:
It was very positive. The only minor issue we had was in communicating with the people who let us into the property and checked us out. There was a lot of pointing and charades, but we eventually were able to get essential information conveyed.
Enjoyed Most:
It was all so good! It was a good size, had loads of character, was well maintained, but I'd have to say the grounds were my favorite thing. They were simply beautiful.
Enjoyed Least:
It was a bit difficult to find. A map with pictures would have been helpful. We scratched up the rental car taking a wrong turn down a narrow road full of brush. Whoops.
Surrounding Area:
We took a drive to a nearby winery which had incredible mountain views. The town of Alto Pascio was also quite hospitable and very charming. The people were incredibly welcoming.
Nearby Events or Locales:
Orentano. It was largely a residential suburb versus an actual town with amenities. Orentano was within walking distace. Alto Pascio was what most would consider short driving distance vs walking distance.
Tips or Restaurants:
The little restaurant closest to the villa on the outskirts of Alto Pascio was great. We really never had a bad meal. We did cook on the grill a couple of times. Pick up charcoal.
Directions:
We used a GPS but it could not direct us further than the main road outside of Orentano. See prior comment.
Check In Out:
Just the minor language barrier, but the staff was very nice. Both went relatively smoothly, with some charades.

Terri, October

Overall:
Very much enjoyed the facilities and location. Corte 1 boasted four large bedrooms for just two couples, but it felt luxurious to be able to take advantage of all the space--and we did. The central location made day trips to Florence, Lucca, Pisa, etc perfect.
Enjoyed Most:
Space, space, space!
Enjoyed Least:
I was going to say hard beds, but I think the kitchen could benefit from a real oven or convection microwave. We ate in most nights having ravaged local markets for some of the finest food stuffs we've ever experienced. It became a challenge to do it full justice in that kitchen, but we managed.
Surrounding Area:
Small quiet towns where you could truly get into the local culture. And everyone was so kind, in spite of our inability to speak Italian. Thankfully some knew enough English or French for us to do what we wanted.
Nearby Events or Locales:
Orentano. Yes--you could walk if you were dumb enough to want to challenge Italian drivers regarding who had the right of way. So we got in our car to make it a fair fight.
Tips or Restaurants:
This place had everything we needed, including a good two days of provisions. We brought some spice packs suited to our tastes which could have been purchased there but unless we wanted to carry back or leave behind would have been a waste.
Directions:
No GPS coordinates, which would have been very, very useful. The address could not be found on our GPS. Also their street sign, which is critical to finding the driveway, is hidden behind another sign.

Denis, October

Overall:
Our expectations were high, and the property exceeded them! The owner explained everything when we arrived, and her English was very good. The house is quiet and beautiful. It's well located, too--we took day trips to the coast, to Florence, to Siena, and to smaller towns in Tuscany.
Enjoyed Most:
We really liked the authentic Tuscan feel in the house, plus the grounds. The pool was great; our family enjoyed it and the tennis court, as well as the outside dining and sitting areas. We also appreciated the food the owner provided when we arrived; this was very helpful since the local markets were closed.
Enjoyed Least:
We would have liked to have been a little closer to the village.
Surrounding Area:
We spent time in Lucca and enjoyed the Puccini festival and dining in the piazza. Altopascio is a charming town with interesting shops.
Nearby Events or Locales:
Orentano is the closest small town. It was within walking distance, but since we were there in August, it was generally too hot to walk.
Tips or Restaurants:
Be aware that the oven is a countertop model. It works fine but is relatively small. The house was very well equipped.
Directions:
We had GPS in the car. This was helpful since we arrived after dark. The directions were accurate, but the small sign for the dirt road is hard to find.
Check In Out:
The owner was very helpful.

Joe , September

Overall:
We loved the property, which is very comfortable and beautifully decorated. We were very happy to find window screens and a well-appointed kitchen. Best of all, we arrived to find a fridge and cupboards well stocked with all the food and wine we needed for our first few days. Thank you to our hosts!
Enjoyed Most:
The beautiful building, grounds, and pool area were a pleasure to be in. Very relaxing and everything worked perfectly. Morning and evening swims were glorious and we enjoyed the barbeque.
Enjoyed Least:
It did get mosquitoey for the last couple of days, which made sitting outside difficult. Other days were fine, though. The shower in the smaller bathroom upstairs was difficult to use because it doesn't have a wall fixture.
Surrounding Area:
We loved exploring the hill towns to the north, and their restaurants. Beth Elon's "A Culinary Traveller in Tuscany" has some great suggestions for this area where you won't see another tourist but will get great views, delicious food, and a friendly reception.
Nearby Events or Locales:
Orentano was in walking distance and has good groceries, butcher, pharmacy, etc.
Tips or Restaurants:
The guest book has some good restaurants, but my best suggestion would be to buy Beth Elon's book and don't miss Lucca--it's lovely.
Directions:
It would be helpful to give the house number and street address as this is how the property is marked. We found the collection of houses easily, but weren't sure which was ours.
Check In Out:
We arrived early and called the manager and someone was there to let us in 3 minutes later. They were very helpul. Checkout was punctual and easy. It would be good to pay the deposit by credit card rather than cash, though. We got 200 Euros back as we were leaving and didn't have any need for them at that point. Paying in cash means we had to pay currency conversion fees on the money twice.

Alison, June

Overall:
We had a marvelous family vacation at La Corte. The villa was very comfortable, nicely furnished and decorated without being stuffy. The gardens were in full bloom, the roses were breath-taking. This was a great place to relax with family and a great central location for travels to other towns.
Enjoyed Most:
Spacious. We had eight people in our party and never felt that we were on top of each other. So many places to sit and chat or read or walk. We could all sit together or gather in smaller groups or sit quietly and contemplate salamanders.
Enjoyed Least:
The mattresses are thin and hard. I know they are traditional Italian beds, and we were able to sleep on them more or less okay. But this would probably be the one thing all 8 people would mention as their least favorite thing.
Surrounding Area:
Orentano and Altopascio are about midway between Florence and Pisa, within an easy drive of Lucca and Viareggio, and really only little more than an hour to the Cinque Terre. If you go south, there are a number of small hilltop towns which are just charming for a day trip.
Nearby Events or Locales:
Orentano is maybe a kilometer from the villa, some of us did walk there once or twice. There is an interesting church tower and a couple of bar-cafe's for cappuccino. More often, we went into Altopascio, which is about 5 km. There is a Conad Supermarket open on Sundays until 1 pm but make sure to walk through the main town too. The bakery on the square has fresh bread. The market is on Thursdays - don't miss the fresh produce!!
Tips or Restaurants:
We needed much less than we expected. There were plenty of supplies utensils, salt, pepper, oil, vinegar, even laundry detergent were available. The Conad Supermarket in Altopascio was a good resource for whatever we needed. If you can, bring a GPS - the road signs were NOT helpful. And a cell phone! DEFINITELY, without fail, have dinner at Da Benito's in Orentano. We had our birthday celebration there, the food was fabulous, the service excellent. They are packed every night with LOCALS, so that tells you something make a reservation. We also had a very pleasant noon meal in Altopascio at the Loggia in the square behind the church.

Erica, May

Overall:
Very nice and very relaxing. We were only four people in the large space, but loved the convenience and the comfort of the house. The manager was very helpful and we were greeted with a large plate of fruit, a couple bottles of wine and she returned the second morning with wonderful focaccia and a fruit tart for breakfast. I had a terrible cold and she took me to a farmacia and translated for me to get the right medicine. That was very helpful.
Enjoyed Most:
We had great weather and really enjoyed the nice seating areas in the back of the villa. We often ate breakfast and dinner outside and almost every morning, enjoyed sitting outside and reading in the sun before setting out on our daily adventures. We also enjoyed a fire every night. We often ate a hearty lunch somewhere and had a simple dinner at the villa. We were there before the pool was available for use.
Enjoyed Least:
Really nothing. They said they had tennis racquets, but one was broken and the balls ancient. We were not there to play, so it didn't matter.
Surrounding Area:
We loved going to Lucca. We went for several days and particularly enjoyed renting bikes and riding around the ramparts of the city. It was also an easy trip to Cinque Terre and we had a great time there, both walking and taking the train between towns.
Nearby Events or Locales:
Orentano was the closest town and although we could have walked, we didn't. We walked all day at various other places.
Tips or Restaurants:
We had a great dinner one night at da Benito in Orentano. You definitely need a reservation and a good appetite. The portions are extremely generous, delicious and the cost was unbelievably low. Although they provide toilet paper and matches, you will have to buy some to finish out the week. The kitchen was fairly well equipped. We did have the owner cater a dinner one night and the food was good and they cleaned up beautifully.
Directions:
We did use a GPS throughout Italy. The owner's directions were needed when we got close. The little yellow sign on the last turn is hard to see.
Check In Out:
The owner was prompt and so were we. No problems. She brought her computer so we could get boarding passes for the next day. Very helpful.

Jean, April

Overall:
it was a really amazing place to stay at. We really enjoyed it. Felt a bit luxurious when we first arrived. Amazing pool area.
Enjoyed Most:
The outdoor areas were really amazing. However also loved the old house and the kitchen. The staff was really kind and helpful.
Enjoyed Least:
We wished it had been closer to the village. We always ended up driving our car to buy bread and coffee in the morning.
Surrounding Area:
The peacefulness.
Nearby Events or Locales:
Tt was within walking distance, about 20 minutes, but we always took the car. Too hot to walk.
Tips or Restaurants:
Bring mosquito spray.
Directions:
it was a little bit difficult to see the sign which directed us to the property.

Kristin, July

Overall:
We were three couples and all felt the villa was more then promised. The interior was spotless and the furniture was sturdy and comfortable. The grounds were very well kept, and while it was too cool to swim when the pool opened during our stay we spent time in the sun planning our next day's adventure. The owner met us upon our arrival and explained the workings of the house heat, clothes and dishwasher, and keys. She returned the following morning with fresh local bread and a pie. She left a contact number and then we did not see her again. In other words she was helpful but not ever present.
Enjoyed Most:
The spaciousness of the two living room areas, large bedrooms and 3 full baths and expansive private grounds made us feel like VIPS.
Enjoyed Least:
The nook-type kitchen table in the middle of the room was a bit awkward for six people to maneuver around but this was a minor issue. While mattresses were very firm, we all reported a good nights sleep.
Surrounding Area:
We liked being right in the small town of Orentano were we ate once or twice and very close to the good sized Altopacio. It was a quick drive to Lucca. One day we just drove up into the mountains and discovered a series of villas and beautiful scenery with no guidebook required. It was wonderful to just explore on our own.
Nearby Events or Locales:
Our Villa was in Orentano which was a mile to the center. The next good size town was a 5 minuter drive
Tips or Restaurants:
Two miles from our villa was Il Vilico a family Italian restaurant with 3 generations. The grandson was our waiter and when he had trouble explaining one item on the menu, a young man from the next table jumped up to help and made the experience fun. The Pasta dishes and the grilled spare ribs were the best. The villa had linens and towels and paper goods. We find throughout Europe no one uses washcloths so we bring them from home.

Larry, April

Enjoyed Most:
The location was ideal with quick access to the autostrada and located midway between Pisa and Florence. Even more special was the owner's daughter-manager. She was delightful and helpful. We hired a cook for two of the nights which turned out to be the owner and her family. A feast is an understatement, and the warmth and hospitality was overwhelming. She helped make dinner reservations and called ahead to a local winery for a private tour. Incredible.
Enjoyed Least:
The villa is charming but not posh. The mattresses were rather hard, and the towels could be improved. Also, I would suggest whoever rents it to arrange to have housekeeping at least midweek. Editor's Note: The owner has confirmed that the mattresses were newly purchased in 2006. Also, upon arrival the owner will ask how many towels are needed. If you want pool towels, be sure to ask. January 2010.
Surrounding Area:
It was wonderful to have a pool and tennis court to enjoy when touring gets exhausting. We had a particularly hot week and the kids loved the pool.
Nearby Events or Locales:
Orentano was a very cute tiny town with patisseries and a wonderful restaurant. Very easy walk.
Tips or Restaurants:
Benito's in Orentano. Da Pode restaurant in Sovestro outside of San Gimignano. On a cliff with amazing views and obscenely wonderful pasta and Florentine Steak.
Check In Out:
Again, the manager was very accommodating.

Charisse, September

Enjoyed Most:
The outside area. We really enjoyed the pool and the tennis courts.
Enjoyed Least:
The beds were hard. Editor's Note: The mattresses were newly purchased in 2006. As a general rule, Italian mattresses are firm. January 2010.
Surrounding Area:
We drove to Lucca - 20 min, Pisa - 30 min, San Gimignano - 1hr 20 min, and the beach - 30 min. We also enjoyed the pizza and beer festival that Orentano had to support their soccer team. We were the only Americans but they were really nice to us.
Nearby Events or Locales:
Orentano was close but I didn't feel it was close enough to walk and I didn't feel safe on the narrow winding roads.
Tips or Restaurants:
I would bring beach towels. We needed them for the pool, the beach and when we road the train to Cinque Terre. All the grocery stores are closed on Sunday so do you shopping before you get to the Villa on Saturday.

Deanna , July

Enjoyed Most:
Beautiful setting with well groomed grounds. Location very good for day trips to Pisa, Lucca and Florence, among others.
Enjoyed Least:
The mattresses were uncomfortable. Did not have adequate linens provided. The pool was not cleaned until half-way through our visit. The jacuzzi was not heated.
Surrounding Area:
Loved wine tasting near Monte Carlo. Also had great dinner at The Queen's Room in Monte Carlo. Enjoyed visiting numerous small towns-cities including Lucca.
Tips or Restaurants:
Our cell phones did not work and there is no phone in the villa. Would make sure that you bring adequate cell phone so that you can call for information-reservations during your stay.

Mary, June

Enjoyed Most:
The garden and pool are spectacular.
Enjoyed Least:
Difficult to get to it.
Surrounding Area:
The garden.
Nearby Events or Locales:
Orentano and yes, it is within walking distance.
Tips or Restaurants:
The restaurants in Orentano are very good and friendly. The caretakers are very nice and helpful, but do not speak any English. We got by because I understand and can speak Italian and Spanish.

Raul, June

Enjoyed Most:
Beatiful grounds and setting.
Enjoyed Least:
Marginal kitchen.
Surrounding Area:
Beautiful countryside. Nice for bicycling.
Nearby Events or Locales:
Orentano was within walking distance.
Tips or Restaurants:
In Monte Carlo there are several good restaurants.

Michael, May

Overall:
It the best hidden secret. The place is so close to different areas. You do need a car. I will always remember the smell of gardenia when you enter the property and the sound of the birds. JUST BEAUTIFUL!!!!!!!!!!
Enjoyed Most:
The bedrooms and the gardens.
Enjoyed Least:
You definitely need to rent cell phones while traveling in Europe. There is no telephone in the villa, and yet we were all able to get by without the cell phones. The peace and quiet was such a welcome!.
Surrounding Area:
The picture on the web site does not do it justice. The place is so breathtaking that I wish I had more time to relax in the villa. I wish I could have used the pool. Very peaceful. Paola and Guiseppe went out of their way to drive us to the restaurant since it was dark and hard to find. They also brought us pastries in the morning since they knew that we did not have time to go to the market.
Nearby Events or Locales:
The nearest town is Orentano. Beautiful walk.
Tips or Restaurants:
You don't have to bring that many things with you since there is a washing machine. If you will be using the pool, perhaps bring beach towels. If you intend to play tennis, bring tennis attire. Matches is very helpful since they use a gas stove.
Directions:
The sign for the property in Orentano is a bit small.
Check In Out:
Make sure you have cash to pay for the cleaning fee and the amount of gas you use. They will read the gas meter upon your arrival and verify the gas meter again when you check out.

Janette, October

Overall:
I would definitely rent the property again. We WERE lucky in that it was late in the season and no one else was renting the adjoining units
Enjoyed Most:
THere were alot of areas to congregate in the front lawn, back lawn, living room, kitchen, dining room so we could enjoy each others company comfortably depending on the time of day or what we were doing
Enjoyed Least:
Being at the end of the season, the pool needed cleaning.
Surrounding Area:
Good restaurants and markets. Nice small towns to visit. Close enough to the Autostrada to take day trips
Tips or Restaurants:
Bring converters as the new outlets don't take the old adapters. THe landlady was very helpful regarding restaurant reservations

Anne, September

Enjoyed Most:
It was very peaceful, we loved the tennis court and the barbecue.
Enjoyed Least:
Driving down the dirt road
Surrounding Area:
It was perfect. Their was a small town right by us and it was very accecesible to the Autostrada

Laura, April

Overall:
The long drive back into the villa from the main road was exactly what I expected of a Tuscan villa. Complete seclusion. The villa itself, the exterior and interior were also exactly what I wanted from a Tuscan villa. From the iron gates over the windows, to the arched iron gates over the first floor doors, to the brick floors on the interior first floor, to the concrete steps to the second floor, the marble bathrooms and kitchen counter tops, to the brick archways on the interior, to the antique furniture, the villa was everything an American thinks of when we think of a Tuscan villa. The salt water zero clearance pool was beautiful and a major hit with my entire family. The tennis court was also a major bonus that we used even more than we thought we would. We spent two weeks here which afforded us the opportunity to spend a significant amount of time relaxing and enjoying the villa. I would consider staying a full month next time. The location and it's proximity to all of Tuscany's sites was a major bonus; from Lucca to Pisa to Florence to Forte de Marmi and Cinque Terre.
Enjoyed Most:
The typical Tuscan feeling of the villa, the extreme hospitality shown by the villa owner, and the villa's proximity to the Tuscan sites.
Enjoyed Least:
Nothing.
Surrounding Area:
The gelateria in the town of Orantano, Lucca, and the people in all the surrounding villages.

Frances, July

Overall:
We were 100% satisfied with this property.
Enjoyed Most:
It was spacious, well located and quiet. The owner stopped by every day, looking after the large garden, and therefore was on hand for advice and answering questions. Very pleasant set up for dinner cooking.
Enjoyed Least:
Two small things, there should be better quality kitchen knife and wine glasses that can do honor to Tuscan wines.
Surrounding Area:
Simply quiet but yet close to Lucca, Pisa and train to Florence.

Yves, October

Overall:
This was probably the most beautiful place I have ever stayed. The landlord was wonderful--generous, and hospitable, and a tremendous help when our daughter became ill with a fever. He eased what could have become a very tense situation.
Enjoyed Most:
The interior was beautifully restored, and nicely furnished. The couches and beds were very comfortable. Screens on the windows were a big plus. And the pretty lighting of the pool at night for night time swims was great. Oh, and the pool was beautiful with its natural rock landscaping.
Enjoyed Least:
The back garden was not finished--a bit rough. But I imagine it will be beautiful when it's done. This was not really an issue however.
Surrounding Area:
The location was great. Very close drive to Lucca, a great spot for touring, and the local towns of Orentano and Altopascio were charming and good sources for food shopping etc. Orentano has an excellent restaurant, and some of the best gelato we had--and we had a lot.
Tips or Restaurants:
The restaurant was da Benito in Orentano. Fabulous food and service and inexpensive.

Ruth, July

Overall:
The villa was very nice, spacious and beautifully decorated.
Enjoyed Most:
The property and amenities (i.e. pool, tennis court, outdoor grill and outdoor eating area) were all very, very nice. Last but not least, the owners of the property, who met us and showed us into the villa, could not have been nicer or more accomodating. They left us a nice gift package of pasta, bread, olive oil, wine and some other essential basics, and were very helpful in dispensing advice.
Enjoyed Least:
The kitchen could have been a bit better equipped. Specifically, wine glasses, more and larger knives, a cutting board and another serving platter or two would have been ideal. The only other criticism, more of a piece of advice to those considering this property, is that this villa is one of three units in the same building, so there will likely be other guests using the villa and the grounds. So, if you are with a big group that is likely to be up late at night enjoying the wonderful wine and lively conversations (as our group was), you will have to be mindful of other guests (i.e. if you are looking for a place where you can be as loud as you want without having to worry about it, this may not be your place). On the other hand, if you are looking for absolute peace and quite, you might have to contend with the noise of the guests in the other unit. Things worked out nicely for us, but prospective renters should be aware of these considerations.
Surrounding Area:
The proximity to a great variety of day trips was perfect (Florence, Lucca, great vineyards, Cinque Terre and much more). The area most immediately surrounding the villa was absolutely beautiful with lots of forested area that was great for walks through the woods.
Nearby Events or Locales:
Cinque Terre (about an hour and a half drive), Florence, Lucca, and the surrounding countryside.
Tips or Restaurants:
See above regarding guests in the other two units.

Steve, June

Overall:
Ultimately the question is: Would I go back? Yes, I would. I will speak highly of my trip to Tuscany and our time there. The villa was tastfully decorated with a wonderful character. It was very recently done so everything was new.
Enjoyed Most:
First, I must say that the caretaker/owner of the property was a delightful woman.
Enjoyed Least:
The tennis courts were under construction and not available for use. Upon our arrival we were told we could play tennis at another location, but we would have to drive there and call ahead to arrange a time. Along with this came large trucks and much noise (at early hours in the morning) to complete this construction. I understand the need, but wish I had been aware to have planned accordingly - especially since I inquired about us using the garden space for a special event.

Nikki, May