1 double bedroom and 1 twin/double bedroom, 2 shower rooms
Location: Chianti Villas Tuscany
This property rents Saturday to Saturday
At the end of the Borgo and closest to the swimming pool is the large Geranio apartment, which is entered through arched French doors from a wide furnished terrace and into a delightful loggia, laced with light. This room leads further into living and dining areas where a comfortable sofa sits across from an open fireplace and a table for 6 sits close to the arched doorway accessing the compact, but well equipped, kitchen. While one of the apartment's two shower rooms is located off the living room, the other is on the top floor, where two bedrooms, a twin/double and a double, both have doors to a furnished balcony terrace that overlooks the pool and the green hills that soften the horizon. Obvious care has been taken with furnishings and finishing touches in this apartment, with fine fabrics, quality fittings and a sensitivity to colour present throughout.
Outdoor dining at Geranio involves choice, for in addition to the umbrella and table on the large patio there is also a covered dining area tucked into a corner near the loggia which provides shelter from the sun with no impediment to view. A meander through the olive trees brings one to the shared pool encircled with sunbeds and umbrellas and the estate also offers mountain bikes, table tennis and a barbecue for anyone who dinner needs a lick of flame.
Convenient in its agricultural heyday, the property is only 2 kms from the ancient market town of Mercatale, whose public square dates back 8 centuries. With your host's tips on shortcuts, meandering over for a morning coffee and fresh pastries is quite doable. A seven-minute drive through the surrounding countryside instead brings you to the historic town of San Casciano, where Machiavelli began both his exile and his famous treatise 'The Prince'. Still set amongst vineyards and olive groves, the town is renowned for its production of wine and olive oil and is home to the principal cellars of the Antinori wineries, whose striking new Cantina Antinori, near Bargino, is on many a wine-lover's itinerary. Of course, sitting squarely in the Chianti Classico region makes it easy to go in search of the small family wineries that produce boutique gems.
The countryside is not the only thing which draws guests, however, and a half hour could have one in the center of the Renaissance wonders and busy markets of the city of Florence, with a bus from Mercatale providing a way to avoid parking problems. Other cities that receive their just due in Tuscan guidebooks also make easy day trips - medieval Siena with its beautiful shell-shaped piazza; San Gimignano and its ancient towers; Arezzo, known the paintings of Piero della Francesca and its monthly Antiquarian Fair and Lucca, whose ring of ramparts was happily never called upon to defend it. To go exploring and then return to a gracious home in the hills - what better way to spend a Tuscan holiday.