Balconata, Figline Valdarno

Sleeps 4

A charming villa and private garden in a stylishly renovated farming estate

Property summary

Sleeps 4

2 double bedrooms and 2 ensuite bathrooms with tub with overhead shower

Location: Florence and surroundings

This property rents Saturday to Saturday

Surrounding Region

  • Bar, restaurants, supermarkets in Pian di Scò, 5 min. and San Giovani Valdarno 20 min.
  • Shops and trains in San Giovanni Valdarno, 20 min, and Figline Valdarno, 17 min, with free parking and direct line to Florence hourly
  • Weekly markets in Filigne Valdarno 17 min and Montevarchi 1/2 hr
  • Tennis in Castelfranco di Sopra, 10 km, riding stables within 6 km, 18-hole golf course in 30 km
  • Prada outlet and The Mall outlet stores in Incisa, 1/2 hr.
  • Loro Ciuffena 16 km, Chianti villages 50 min
  • Florence 45 min, Arezzo 50 min, Rapolano spas, 1 hr & Siena around 75 min
  • Airports: Florence less than 1 hr and Pisa 1 1/2 hr, Rome 2 3/4 hr.
  • Accommodation

    One of the first houses encountered upon entering the Borgo, Balconata is also one of the most popular, perhaps because of its private garden, buffered from life in the central piazza by greenery and an attractive stone wall that rises to the level of the balcony. Entrance to the house is via a door near the hamlet well that opens to a small entryway with sliding doors to two double bedrooms, each with garden access and an ensuite bathroom. Both bedrooms are beautifully finished off with stylish fabrics and country antiques, while bathrooms feature twin sinks and travertine stonework.

    A stairway from the entry hall leads up to the kitchen, whose clean lines and modern appliances blend well with the beams and original flooring which frame it. An open doorway leads on to the spacious sitting/dining room that spans the width of the house. At one end there is a round marble-topped dining table for four near French doors that open to a balcony overlooking the garden; at the other end, two sofas are bathed in light from two French doors leading to a generous wrap-around balcony overlooking the estate’s central piazza. The balcony extends and gently follows the path leading down to the garden.

    Local area

    Borgo Rinnovato is perfectly located to discover why Tuscany has been and remains a destination of choice. Being in the Valdarno, the wide valley through which the Arno River meanders, Florence, the famed city that straddles it immediately comes to mind. Leaving your car at the Figline or San Giovanni Valdarno free station lots, hourly direct trains will easily bring you to the heart of this Renaissance treasure chest where world-famous museums, frescoed churches, graceful bridges and historic piazzas are all accessible on foot, with sustaining gelato stops along the way of course.

    The road south arrives at another major Tuscan city, Arezzo. Believed to have been one of the 12 most important Etruscan cities and always a center of commerce, still today Arezzo’s artisans and merchants enliven its medieval center, especially on the first Sunday of the month and the previous Saturday when its Antiquarian Fairs fill the streets with ‘treasures’. June and September visitors delight in Piazza Grande’s costumed Saracen Joust, while visitors the year round seek out the splendid frescoes of Piero della Francesca.

    If bustling historic cities and a church too many begin to fatigue, there are other options. Designer outlets are half an hour away for those whose preferences lean to Italian styling and a good bargain. And in less than an hour winding cypress-lined roads through the Chianti region lead to small towns such as Gaiole-, Greve- or Radda in Chianti, known world-wide for what fills a wine glass and the delicious food that accompanies it.

    Should small-scale exploration suit you best, head to nearby Loro Ciuffenna, a delightful medieval town built around a Romanesque bridge spanning the mountain torrent that powered the many water mills producing chestnut flour. Though the mills have ceased to flow, there are charming restaurants, an art museum dedicated to a native son Venturino Venturi and only 1 km out of town in Gropina the impressive Pieve di San Pietro, the oldest (774 A.D.), best preserved Romanesque parish church in Tuscany.

    Yet even before hopping into the car to go exploring, the estate’s wooded panorama, reaching as high as the Pratomagno mountains, may well inspire guests to follow paths through their 800 hectares. Or perhaps join a guided hike and wine tasting tour through the nearby village of Castelfranco whose dramatic landscape and colourful eroded shapes, the ‘Balze’, featured in the background of Leonardo da Vinci’s ‘Mona Lisa’. Certainly, with stables nearby and bikes easily arranged, life in the slow lane is a wonderful way to discover your surroundings, and with a beautiful house as your base and a restorative pool at hand, a Tuscan holiday will soon find its rightful rhythm.

    Features

    Air conditioning
    Air-conditioning in bedrooms, extra
    Arrival groceries
    Available on request, for a small fee
    Baby bed and high chair
    Available on request
    Babysitting
    English-speaking babysitter, available on request
    Bar
    There is an Honesty Bar by the swimming pool, which can be stocked with alcohol on request.
    Barbecue
    Portable BBQs available - To be reserved in advance
    Bicycles
    Bike rental in Figline Valdarno, 10 km. - Rental and excursions can be arranged on prior request
    Billiards table
    Family billiard table, a 1914 'Della Chiesa', is in the Billiard Hall
    Catering
    Breakfast or dinner - Available on request, either in the Borgo dining room or courtyard or in the house
    Coffee Maker
    Italian and American coffee makers
    Computer, Printer or Scanner
    Fax/photocopy service and some printing available via receptionist desk, on request
    Cooking lessons
    Available on request
    Dishwasher
    Dryer
    DVD player
    Event organizing
    Presence of the Theatre, Restaurant and Enoteca and large Library provide space for a variety of events. Assistance available on request.
    Extra cleaning
    Available on request
    Extra linen change
    Available on request
    Fans
    Portable fans available on request
    Final cleaning included
    Fireplace
    Renaissance open fireplace in the Billiard Hall and several wood stoves in the Library. Fireplace in the house is not to be used.
    Furnished outdoor areas
    Furnished outdoor areas in private garden
    Games room
    The Billiard Hall is equipped with a gaming table for cards, chess or board games
    Golf course
    18-hole golf course at Circolo del Golf dell Ugolino in Grassing, 30 km
    Hair dryer
    Heating
    Central heating, Extra and based on consumption
    Home-grown produce
    Virgin olive oil, Vin santo, Zolfini beans
    Horse riding
    Stables near Reggello, 7 km
    Internet access
    WiFi fast internet - available in all indoor areas of the Borgo, including the houses as well as the Library and Theatre. The Library gallery provides additional quiet space for working on-line.
    Iron and Ironing board
    Kettle
    Laundry service
    Available on request
    Microwave
    Available on request
    Mid-week cleaning
    Daily cleaning (1 hr/day), with mid-week linen change, included
    Music
    CD player & radio
    Oven
    Pool towels
    Provided
    Restaurant nearby
    Restaurant on-site, serving breakfast and dinner. Nearest restaurants in Pian de Scò and Reggello, 5-12 mins.
    Safe deposit box
    Swimming pool
    Large shared pool (Dim: 10x20 m; Depth 1.20-1.70 m.) The pool has steps into the shallow end and adjacent pavilions for shade. The pool is open all year round.
    Telephone
    Phone usage available on request
    Television
    Satellite TV
    Tennis court
    Tennis courts at Castelfranco di Sopra, 10 km or Montevarchi, 10 km
    Toaster
    Transport and tours
    Airport transfers available on request. Guided hiking tour available on request
    Washing machine
    Winery and Wine tasting
    Wine-tasting on-site available in the Enoteca; Hiking/Wine tasting tour available.
    Workshop and conference space
    Utilizing the theatre, library, and catering facilities there are excellent facilities for workshops, art exhibits, conferences, etc.
    Balconata 4
    £ $
    per week
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