2 double bedrooms, 1 twin bedroom, 1 shower room, 1 bathroom
Location: Siena and surroundings
This property rents from Saturday to Saturday
Casa Marta is an independent upper floor apartment with tall, airy rooms with Victorian proportions. It is approached from an open fronted courtyard and has a pleasant, walled, furnished garden at the rear with beautiful views of the estate. Sitting as it does at the heart of the estate, it is easy for guests to join in activities such as cooking classes or olive oil tastings held in the Granary, yet being on the top floor with views of the back woodlands, it is easy to preserve the sense of being away from it all.
Situated in exceptionally picturesque countryside, Montestigliano has all the characteristics of the classic Tuscan Great Estate: avenues of cypresses, vineyards, olive groves, woodlands and neat, cultivated fields. The estate buildings form a small complex with some farmhouses, the villa and agricultural buildings in a beautiful position on top of a hill, with extensive views of the surrounding countryside. Wide, sandy floored cypress lined avenues traverse the forested hills of the estate, often terminating in belvederes at the most impressive viewpoints. Through the tangled woodlands, across the cultivated plain below, one can see Siena and the Chianti hills in the distance, and there is a rare abundance of wild flowers and animals.
Entrance to Casa Marta is through a door in the corner of the open-fronted courtyard at the heart of the estate. A staircase leads past the ground floor laundry and up to a short corridor off of which are two bedrooms, a twin and a double, with lovely woodland views as well as a bathroom and a shower room. A further corridor leads past a roomy eat-in kitchen with generous cupboards and counter space, past a double bedroom and finishes in a large living room with sofas, a dining table for 6, and a wood-burning stove, much appreciated by early Spring or late Autumn guests. In similar proportions to this spacious apartment, guests have a wide secluded garden and furnished pergola for outdoor meals with a view.
Some of the farmhouses and agricultural buildings on the vast Montestigliano estate have been very carefully converted into pleasing, comfortable houses and apartments. Guests on the estate share two swimming pools, one reserved for those who want peace and quiet, the other, further from the houses, for allowing free rein to summer holiday fun. Guests at all the properties may wander at will all over the estate. Part of the lands front the River Merse, which has excellent swimming and is protected for bathers by the Sienese authorities. The tiny village of Torri, with its famous monastery and striped cloisters is two minutes away by car, while there are pizzerie and restaurants within a few minutes' drive. A very important extra here is provided by the charming owners who will unobtrusively keep out of your way or happily go out of their way to help you, providing endless extra services if you require them, from sending faxes, arranging balloon trips, providing touring information, to translating at the doctor's.
During the summer concerts and exhibitions are often organised in the ancient granary, an extraordinary lofty space (14 X 28 m.) spanned by great arches laced with tie bars. This barn is also very suitable as studio space for art courses or conferences, and the rooms below, next to the estate offices, include a games room with billiards, TV, ping pong, a dining room, a catering kitchen and a small gift shop. The little restaurant provides delightful suppers twice a week.
The property Casa Marta was a lovely Tuscan experience. It was clean, and larger than I expected, it was decorated in a traditional farm manner. The manager was extremely helpful with every aspect of our stay from directions to local knowledge and restaurants etc., and spoke perfect English as well as Italian. A highlight was (an optional) traditional Italian dinner on the Friday evening organized by the estate owners and attended by all guests staying there that week (37), we dined in the outside courtyard and were entertained with music and dancing.