Author Archives: admin2

Casa Solagne in San Benedetto del Tronto, Le Marche

Explore the Adriatic From Italian Villas in Le Marche

The Brief

Today we received an email from Jean asking if any of our Italian villas would suit a couple that wanted a base to explore the Riviera of the Palms on the Adriatic coast. She specified a simple property and one that was comfortable, functional and close enough to the attractions in the area. Continue reading

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Villa Tropicale in Castellammare del Golfo, Sicily by Cottages to Castles

Villas in Sicily Are Perfect for Spring Sunshine

The Brief

We had a call last week from a lady who wants to book one of our villas in Sicily for herself, her husband and another couple. They are all teachers and need to go in the holidays but want to avoid the heat of July and August. They are looking to go in March/April but want it to be warm enough so that they can eat outside and still enjoy some warm weather. Continue reading

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Casa Dei Limoni in Bonassola, Liguria by Cottages to Castles

Villas in Italy’s Liguria: Fabulous Coastal Accommodation

The Brief

Lianne got in touch with us about staying in one of our villas in Italy in Liguria. She has recently retired and she and her husband, along with son and daughter-in-law, are really keen to visit the Cinque Terre, somewhere she had heard plenty about but never visited. Continue reading

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Villa Don Guido in Limite sull'Arno, Tuscany by Cottages to Castles

Villas in Tuscany Perfect for Corporate Groups

The Brief

We have several villas in Tuscany ideal for corporate groups, so when David called us to ask if we had anything suitable for his team of investment bankers, we were happy to advise. He requested that the villa has the feel of a country retreat but also has the advantage of being close enough to a city for day trips. Continue reading

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Planning A Uni Reunion? Choose From our Villas in Italy!

The Brief

What better place for now grown up students to enjoy a university reunion than Italy? We were very excited when Mrs Green called up with her request. She is looking for one of our villas in Italy that would be suitable for 5 friends who first met at university, and their spouses. The group are now in their 50s and are looking for a classic Italian holiday with great food, wine and culture too. Continue reading

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Villa Garda Special in San Felice del Benaco, Lombardy by Cottages to Castles

Lakeside Italian Villas are Perfect for Romantic Breaks

The Brief

We believe that Lake Garda is one of the most romantic places in Italy and Mr Hopwood, who called the office yesterday, couldn’t agree more. He was looking for one of our Italian villas for himself and his wife right on the shores of the lake. They have always been in love with the Italian lakes but have never stayed on Lake Garda and this was their chance! Continue reading

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Italian Villas in Tuscany Perfect for Food and Wine Lovers

The Brief

Janet called us here at the office last week inquiring about Italian villas in Tuscany that would make the perfect holiday venue for three retired ladies that love to cook, drink wine and indulge in all things Italian. She admitted she had her heart set on Tuscany and that the romantic idea of this region had really captivated her. Continue reading

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L’ Antico Casale in Lubriano, Lazio by Cottages to Castles

Discover Family Friendly Villas in Italy’s Lazio Region

The Brief

Mr Grey’s email landed in the office yesterday and rang true with many of our team. He wants to take his family on holiday to one of our villas in Italy and wants it to provide a little of something for everyone. He would like to be near Viterbo and Rome for the art and culture but it is also important that the villa has a pool and is safe for children. Continue reading

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Off Tuscany’s Beaten Track

P1010328Tuscany can often be perceived as a busy region especially in the summer months with tourists flocking to the major sights and towns such as Florence, Siena and San Gimignano.  But what about those that want to get away from the crowds and see a totally different part of this great region?  One idea might be to experience L’Eroica.  This is a permanent, signposted route 200km in length which crosses some of the best landscape Tuscany has to offer.  The route forms a ‘figure of eight’, stretching from Gaiole in Chianti in the north to Montalcino at the southern tip with approximately half being ‘white’ (unmade) road, common in this part of the world.

The route takes in some of Tuscany’s unique and amazing scenery – in the north you are in the Chianti Classico region sculptured by its abundance of vineyards and olive groves.  It then skirts around Siena and continues to the rolling countryside of southern Tuscany onwards to the delightful hilltop town of Montalcino at the most southerly tip.  The eastern route takes in the unique Crete Senesi (craters of Siena) which in the dryness of summer and autumn is like possibly being on the moon.  En route you will pass delightful villages and hamlets which really are off the beaten track.

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Each year there is an official race on L’Eroica when in early October 5000 cyclists on pre-1987 bicycles take this tough course on with an option to do the Complete 200km or three shorter distances.  It is a celebration of everything that is great about cycling and a great spectacle to witness.

But why not experience this route for yourself at another time of year?  Even if it’s just for a few kilometres it is well worth doing just to get away from the tourist crowds.  Bikes can be hired in all the major towns on the route and it is possible to download the official ‘road book’ for just EUR2 from here. Motorcyclists can also follow the route which is ideal for adventure bikes with the entire route being achievable in one day if you have limited time (note: sports bikes might have difficulty in places!).

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Visit Chianti: Stay at Casa Conca d’Oro

Chianti, famous for its wine, is a beautiful area of Tuscany to discover, and the lovely town of Panzano is a great example of why this is the case. The town is perched on the top of a hill, giving it wonderful panoramic views of the valley and the town of Greve below.

It is in Panzano that the Casa Conca d’Oro can be found, a beautiful apartment which offers some of the wonderful views that Panzano boasts. It is the perfect place for a small family, or two couples, looking for a relaxing break, with two double-bedded bedrooms, one of which is en suite. There is another shower room and toilet, ensuring it is a very comfortable apartment for all guests.

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When you visit Chianti, if you would like to try your hand at cooking the Tuscan cuisine, there is a small kitchen equipped with essentials such as hobs, an oven and a fridge. The sitting room/dining area is open plan and can be warmed in the winter months by the wonderful open fireplace that the apartment offers. The owner even provides free firewood.

The lovely outside shaded garden area of the Casa Conca d’Oro is the ideal place to relax and watch the world go by, and guests are invited to try the barbecue, for which you can find meat at the famous local ‘butcher of Panzano’, who sings and offers customers a glass of wine as they purchase their meat.

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In the town itself, there are plenty of different activities and local shops to discover. The centre of Panzano is just a short walk away from the apartment, offering you the chance to leave the car behind and enjoy an evening in one of the many restaurants that the town has to offer. Panzano has every kind of shop you might require, but in case you feel more adventurous, the bigger cities of Siena and Florence are nearby and more or less equidistant.

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