A elegant and spacious villa for 6 on an ancient farming estate south of Florence, Villa Lunetta has the perfect mix of private and shared space. With its own gardens, the house overlooks the hamlet's communal square, while the enormous 20x20 metre pool is a very short walk away.
The estate also has a library, a conference room/theatre, a private restaurant and a wine and oil tasting room, making the villas here perfect for workcations, conferences, as well as weddings and family gatherings.
Sitting near an oak-shaded garden beyond the swimming pool, this stone and brick villa has a greater degree of privacy on the estate. While all the ground floor bedroom suites have independent garden access, general entrance may be through the sunny patio and shade of the furnished portico into the kitchen. With wide French doors, beamed ceiling and terracotta tiling, this is a well-equipped modern kitchen with a marble-topped dining table for all 6 guests, plus a newly met friend or two. A long corridor beyond the kitchen runs the length of the house and leads to all three bedrooms – two doubles and one twin bedroom, each with its own ensuite bathroom that features twin sinks and a tub with overhead shower facilities.
A stairway mid-corridor leads up to a very spacious living room with a sofa, armchairs and satellite TV, as well as double wide French doors opening to a furnished balcony terrace from which to enjoy views of the woodlands that rise towards the Pratomagno mountains. Flagstone paths around the house lead to a table situated for private outdoor dining.
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.
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