3 Women in Tuscany-Need advice

Jan 1st, 2009, 10:48 PM
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3 Women in Tuscany-Need advice

I am planning a 10 day trip (including air time) to Italy in late May 09 with two of my girlfriends. We are from California so we know that it will only give us about 7 days in Italy. Some info about us: We are in our 40’s and we love wineries and good food. I am the only one of us who has been to Italy before (Venice, Tuscany, Rome, Capri), but I think we’re leaning towards somewhere in Tuscany for some winery tours, cooking classes, bike riding, and most importantly….lots and laughs. We will likely rent a car for a few days and would like to stay at a place with a small kitchen so we can cook some of our meals. A beautiful view is important as we imagine ourselves kicking back on a patio at night sipping on wine after a long day of touring around. When I travel with my husband, I do like the out of the way quiet quaint villages, and I’m sure my girlfriends would like that as well, however, we don’t want ‘too’ sleepy of a town since we are all very outgoing and love to meet new people and enjoy stimulating conversation. Maybe somewhere that has at least a bar or two…or a lively restaurant? Does anyone have a suggestion as to WHAT town would be best? Also, I’m looking to hear about farmhouses or villas that might be extra fun for us as well.
loves2sing is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2009, 12:34 AM
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I would like to suggest you, in Arezzo, to rent the whole FRANCESCO REDI CAMERE, only two large bedrooms with a very good kitchen room, so that you can do what you like to do.
Look at its website: www.francescoredi.com .
Othewise, I suggest you, in Montevarchi, to rent the apartment "Il Fienile", with kitchen room, at LA CASA SUL SENTIERO, look at its website: www.lacasasulsentiero.net.
Otherwise, if you prefer the coast and a swimming pool, I suggest you to rent an apartment with kitchen room in Orbetello, at the IL CASALONE, wonderful, Look at its website: www.agriturismocasalone.com.
Depending on your choice, then I can suggest you for wineries, bar, restaurants and smart buys.
Have a lovely trip, ciao.

vincenzod is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2009, 12:48 AM
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From personal experience, I would recommend www.appartamentialpoggiolo.it in lovely Montepulciano.
Peteralan is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2009, 03:10 PM
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Thanks so much for these wonderful suggestions! I am looking forward to researching these places!
loves2sing is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2009, 03:20 PM
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Good for you! You gals will have fun. Here are some of my favs---you want in a small town. The apts. in Montepulcinao are a good idea but may require a week rental. I really like the Palazzo del Capitano below---cute village in best part of Tuscany. Good luck !


Siena province is easily my favorite part of Tuscany. Here is a list of accommodations that I suggest. All prices assume a typical double room.

A. RURAL LOCATIONS: All have parking and good food options nearby

1. Relais La Saracina www.lasaracina.it 230 to 300E
Fabulous country home near Montepulciano—helpful owners

2. Le Traverse www.letraverse.it 155E
Small B&B just south of Pienza—hard to beat at the price—has pool

3. Lucignanello Bandini www.piccolomini.it 150[2] to 244E[4]
These are apartments in a lovely but remote rural setting.

4. Hotel Pescille www.pescille.it Good value at a rustic hotel only 3 km from famed San Gimignano with great views---100 to 130E

5. Fattoria Tregole www.fattoria-tregole.com 110E to 180E
Has both B&B and apartment accommodations. Near Castellina in Chianti

B. IN-TOWN LOCATIONS: For walking convenience to shops etc.

1. Palazzo del Capitano www.palazzodelcapitano.com 130 to 180E
Very nice small hotel in center of San Quirico—perfect location to explore.

2. Vecchia Oliviera www.tuscany.net/oliviera/ 130 to 180E
Nice 4 star hotel at the gate into lovely Montalcino---has pool.

3. Palazzina Cesari www.montalcinoitaly.com 80 to 110E
Lovely small B&B in heart of Montalcino—great value—2 nite stay minimum.

4. Locanda di San Francesco www.locandasanfrancesco.it 180 to 200E
New boutique B&B in a lovely location in Montepulciano—great reviews !

5. Palazzo Ravizza www.palazzoravizza.it 130 to 180E
Very nice & popular hotel in Siena with parking.

bobthenavigator is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2009, 03:49 PM
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Venezuela is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2009, 04:55 PM
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These ALL look wonderful, and all very reasonably priced. How is a girl to decide? In the past I stayed in the Chianti area, loved it, but I've read many posts on here that the Montalcino area is great as well, some even say better. HOW is it better? I mean are the hills higher? Are the views more spectacular? Are the towns more charming? Is the wine better? Are there more wineries to visit?
loves2sing is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2009, 06:09 PM
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Your trip sounds like my 2007 trip with my mom and sister. We found a beautiful 2 bedroom apartment at Terre de Nano near Monticchiello. With a car we had Montepulciano, Montalcino and even Cortona was a nice drive away.


Our apartment was called La Terrazza and like the name says - has a beautiful terrace with fantastic views. One bedroom has a queen, the other has two queen beds, it has a full kitchen and comfy living room. You could have breakfast on the property or not but there are so many cool places, you are going to have to just search online until you find that that says "This is the place:!
sheri_lp is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2009, 06:26 PM
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Buy the book TOP 10 TUSCANY by Reid Bramblett and look at his top 10 hill towns. You will see that none are in Chianti--except Siena itself. However, most of them are in the areas I mentioned on my list. Chianti has gotten too homogenized for me.
bobthenavigator is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2009, 06:54 PM
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Oooo Sheri....3 queen beds? That would be very cool, we wouldn't have to flip a coin, lol.

Bob, thanks for the tip about the book, I will try to order it online now.
loves2sing is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2009, 09:29 PM
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uhoh so sorry - that apartment had one queen and two TWINS - comfy though, and since we're all family we each took the queen bed one night so it was fair for everyone.
sheri_lp is offline  
Jan 3rd, 2009, 06:15 AM
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I recently returned from a 9 day trip to Tuscany with my best frien (we are in our 50's). We had a marvelous time. We split our time in three regions. We went to Cortona first, stayed in an adorable B&B called Casa Kita and just loved the town and the surroundings. I have reviewed it on tripadvisor so you can read my review there.

Our next area (my favorite) was the southern Val d'Orcia where we stayed right outside of San Quirico at a fabulous residence called Il Poggiolo (again reviewed in tripadvisor). There we had an entire apartment to ourselves. There are 11 apartments to rent, each of various sizes, all with kitchen, etc.

For our last stop we drove to the Lucca area and again were in a wonderful B&B called Casa Naldi in Montecarlo (also reviewed in tripadvisor) and loved every minute of it.

In general, everywher we went we enjoyed it tremendously. Food was great everywhere, wherever we happened to fall upon we were mostly able to find good affordable food and wine. We had a car the entire time and driving was no problem at all. If you have any other specific questions, I would be happy to try and help.
Flame123 is offline  
Jan 3rd, 2009, 06:21 AM
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The sister of a friend of mine owns the hotel sited below. She hasn't been there nor have I but here's another to add to your searching. I don't even know where it's located! How's that for a hard sell.

TDudette is offline  
Jan 3rd, 2009, 01:05 PM
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Flame, what did you like about the area around Lucca? How did you spend your days? We are considering splitting our trip into two locations and I'm trying to decide wehre. I have been to Rome and have no real desire to go back, although I might get beat out by my friends who have never been. I have also been to Florence so I'm really hoping to see something new, maybe something along the coast....
loves2sing is offline  
Jan 3rd, 2009, 01:28 PM
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Hey Bob, I was just on slowtrav and noticed you were an ex-IBMer. My husband is an IBMer also. Can't wait until he retires, lol.
loves2sing is offline  
Jan 3rd, 2009, 04:11 PM
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Hmmm ! Yes, I have been retired almost 17 years now. Gives more time for trips to Europe and offering advice to others.
bobthenavigator is offline  
Jan 4th, 2009, 05:18 AM
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loves2sing - of the three areas we visited, I actually liked the Lucca area least. It was very special because we visited the Appenines mountain range and the Garfagnana which are all very unique but it is not "Tuscany" in the way that I personally like and think of Tuscany (think Southern tuscany and the Val d'Orcia - rolling hills, etc.). That said I am happy we went and enjoyed it but would happily go back to other places again, like Cortona area and Val d'Orcia. We spent our time there just as we did in the other areas, i.e. having a coffee and cornetto in a bakery and starting out our day trip to various places in the area. Lunch wherever we happened to be, more touring, back to our B&B for a rest and shower usually before dinner. Dinner was sometimes just something light in our kitchen or more of a meal depending on what our lunch was.
Flame123 is offline  
Jan 4th, 2009, 09:29 AM
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You have a whole different thread indicating you and your friends are going to Rome. Which is it, Rome or Tuscany?
SusanP is offline  
Jan 4th, 2009, 12:28 PM
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Susan: Both.

We'll likely be flying into Rome so we plan to spend a few days there before heading off to Tuscany.
loves2sing is offline  

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