Under half an hour from Siena and Arezzo, a little over an hour from Florence, this very special house was built around 1820 to celebrate the safe return of a soldier from Russia, whose family had feared him lost in the Napoleonic wars. The stone built house, on a hilltop 450 m above sea level, has wonderful views across the surrounding hills of the Casentino. It has a tennis court, a boules pitch and very big swimming pool, 3 m deep at the deep end with a springboard, and the whole property is surrounded by its own parkland with carefully tended rare roses, shrubs and trees, as well as irrigated lawns and fruit trees....
A shrubbery-lined drive leads links the property gate to the two-story stone house whose sheltering portico, furnished with arm chairs and divans, runs the width of the facade. Entry is into a bright hallway with a pietra serena stairway leading up to the first floor and doorways to living quarters on either side. To the left is a large sitting room with sofas and armchairs, a corner fireplace, a door to a small furnished patio, and a large archway with sliding doors leading into a double bedroom and shower room suite. The stylish shower room with large rainfall shower and twin carved stone sinks also has a doorway to the back garden, with easy access to the pool and large travertine table for 12. To the right of the entrance hall is a small sitting room with four large armchairs in front of a pietra serena fireplace, next to a dining room with large wooden table that can seat all guests. The adjacent kitchen, outfitted with pale clean cabinetry and stone countertops, cleverly hides all the appliances and equipment a good cook will need and has two large refrigerator/freezers and a traditional kitchen fireplace.
The top floor has two shower rooms with carved stone sinks and stylish fixtures, each serving two bedrooms. To the right of one shower room is a twin/ double bedroom and a double bedroom, while to the left of the other shower room are two double bedrooms, one with a door to a large furnished balcony that enjoys the view of the Casentino hills. All bedrooms have wrought-iron bedsteads and charming hand-painted wardrobes and look out at the spacious grounds, whose lawns and shady areas with high trees are ideal for children at play.
Heading north there is nearby Ambra with excellent shops and restaurants or Montevarchi from which one can catch the fast train into the heart of Florence. To the northeast is the medieval walled city of Arezzo, whose Basilica preserves the masterpiece of Piero della Francesco and whose Piazza Grande central square fills with monthly antiquarian fairs and Saracen Jousts. Heading southeast leads to healing spa treatments at Rapolano Terme or, therapy of another sort, the designer shops of the Valdichiana Outlet Village. But the Chianti region is practically on Villa Rapale’s doorstep with Castelnuovo Berardenga, Villa a Sesta and San Gusmé all offering stellar restaurants, excellent wineries and stately villas. Not surprisingly, the rural castle of Baron Ricasoli, the creator of the ‘recipe’ of Chianti wine, is also located is this area. It is a region which deserves to be discovered at leisure, with excursions interwoven into sunny days of relaxation and the comfort of one’s own Tuscan villa.
From € 464 a day for the villa.
€ 3250 to € 4250 per week.
That's from € 46 per person per day, based on 10 sharing.
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