In my last post, we were headed towards our "farmhouse" in Tuscany. It's hardly a farmhouse--this is a villa, a big ten-bedroom villa! We were four families totaling 15 people sharing this villa. Dividing ourselves into pairs, there were enough rooms for everyone, with even a few unoccupied.
One family was at the tail end of their journey in Europe. T and family with K and C took a quick break from Manila to join the trip, while this was the beginning of our summer vacation. Coming in on different schedules and flights, this villa was our meeting point.
View from the farm fields behind the villa
We were the last to arrive.
The villa's address is 28 Strada Provinciale, Cortona-Siena--a good location for exploring this area of Tuscany. We were so close to Arezzo, Chianti, Siena, Florence, and all other small towns in between.
After a couple of days we figured out where the local coffeeshop was, and also the grocery. We discovered an outlet mall nearby too. I spotted a few other agriturismos (farmhouses) and villas in this general area.
My very first espresso on this trip
This was the breakfast scene at the villa every morning. Kitchen duty was shared by all, with the men taking over much of the time. I love how progressive B and his brothers (and brother-in-law) are!
Meanwhile the kids are a wee bit too progressive because they needed to be plugged in as often as possible.
The dining room was the only place with wifi, making it an instant BYOD (bring your own device) internet cafe.
Upstairs, the bedrooms are all decorated in the traditional style. They each have their own ensuite bathroom.
This was Mika and Danielle's bedroom...
I lost track of who was staying where as we gathered downstairs in the common areas most of the time.
This is the foyer from the backyard...
and from the front courtyard.
We assembled here every morning before heading out to visit a neighboring town.
Michaelangelo's David welcoming guests to the villa.
Figuring out where we were headed each day by GPS and online reviews
My room was on the third floor so that took care of my daily workout.
Kat found this villa online, and not really sure what to expect, was nervous before we arrived. The owners just started renting it out only recently so it didn't have any posted reviews yet.
Although the property is beautiful, our modern teenagers found the house a bit creepy. I, on the other hand, loved the "oldness" of the house even if a lot of it was just recreated.
We hardly felt the need to spread out in the extensive manicured garden and didn't get to use the barbecue grill, the outdoor areas and the pool. There is just so much to explore in the surrounding towns and we were always heading out.
There's just too much to do and see around the area so we didn't even get to hang out by the pool
This villa would be suitable for a much larger group and could even be a destination for a big event, like a wedding or an anniversary, because the property includes its own chapel!
Here are our hosts, bidding us farewell. Dino and Vittoria didn't speak English so we gestured a lot and I practiced my college Italian. Because of them we have complete group pictures.
Dino pointed out that the painting above the door is of Vittoria.
His portrait is above another doorway.
Their daughter Sabrina spoke perfect English and was our point person when we did all the bookings. She was out of town the day we checked out.
The cast of characters on this Tuscan adventure