4 double bedrooms, 1 french double bedroom, 3 shower rooms, 1 of which ensuite, and 1 ensuite bathroom
Location: Southern Tuscany
This property rents Saturday to Saturday
The driveway into the fenced property arrives just before the grass-trimmed flagstone patio at the front of the house. There is no front door as such but rather twin staircases to either side of the gold center portion of the building leading directly to the sleeping accommodations on the top floor. On this level there are four double bedrooms along a light-filled hallway; one with an ensuite shower room, the others that share a shower room and bathroom at opposite ends of the hallway. An internal stairway from the hallway leads down to a ground floor corridor at the end of which is a guests WC. The corridor itself opens to the large living room where three sofas look onto an open fireplace and a large picture window give hints at the enjoyment to be had in the back garden.
And wide doorway leads from the living room into an entry hall that links the interiors to a furnished pergola just outside the door. This connection is a convenient one, for just off the entry is a country kitchen, well-equiped with modern appliances but fitted with a corner cooking fireplace and a center butcher block. Up a few steps beyond the entry hall a landing continues to a wide dining area with a table that doubles in size to seat 10. Off the landing a short corridor leads to the only bedroom on the ground floor - a double bedroom with an ensuite shower room.
At this property outdoor accommodation is generous and well-planned. Not only is there a covered patio furnished with sofas and armchairs; steps away is a curtained dining pergola with a ceramic table for 10 that looks down the garden to the pool area. It is a stroll through the garden to the pool, but it is one which will be willingly and often made for the pool itself is particularly large, 7 x 15 m., and the area around it has been provided with sun beds and loungers in and out of the shade of umbrellas and a sheltering gazebo.
With the nearest village only a few kilometres away, basic shopping and Italian home cooking is guaranteed. Equidistant in opposite directions the charming medieval hill towns Cetona and San Casciano dei Bagni have streets that meander up and around and meet at a church's bell tower or towering fortress. While Cetona's churches are rich in artworks by artists such as Pinturicchio, San Casciano dei Bagni's wealth come in a more liquid form. Renown for its abundant sources of thermal waters, for centuries it has drawn people to its healing springs, as evidenced by the 5th cent. pagan temple and the adjacent Franciscan monastery that gave hospitality to travellers. Not surprisingly, one of Italy's best-known spas, the Fonteverde, thrives on the same spot. Also close is the ancient town of Sarteano; founded by the Etruscans, whose culture can be revisited in the splendid painting of 'The tomb of the infernal chariot' in the Civic Museum, this is a lively town famous for preserving its traditions, such as when the town celebrates its history in a mid-August Saracen Joust.
When it's time to set history aside for a bit, a change of venue provides Valdichiana outlet shopping near Chiusi or delightful summer concerts in the beautiful gardens of La Foce, the home of Iris Origo as described in her book 'War in Val d'Orcia'. Wine lovers will be happy to know they are not that far from the Vino Nobile of Montepulciano; known as the 'Pearl of the 16th century', this town sits atop a narrow limestone ridge at 605 m. above sea level. Encircled by walls and packed with Renaissance palaces and churches, it buzzes with life on market day Thursdays and during late August festivals. With motorway access relatively close by, it is also easy to enjoy a day out at Arezzo or Orvieto. While the former lies in the wide Chiana valley and is noted for its excellence in textiles and goldsmithing and for its monthly antiquarian fairs, the latter sits atop a large butte of volcanic tufo, making its position one of the most dramatic in Europe. This Umbrian city has been populated since Etruscan times and offers marvels to see, both above and below ground. Perhaps the only thing better than the wealth of sites to see is the knowledge that comfortable rooms and a refreshing pool await your return.