As a retirement gift, we went to spend 3 weeks under the Tuscan sun and in its glorious hills. We found Villa le Capanne, adjacent to the charming, old world hilltop village of Monte Castelli, via agritourismo and Trip Advisor. My goal was to be in the towns and villages, so we chose the Villa over places closer to Siena. It was a dream come true.
We were delighted. Hosts Gina & Franco greeted us so warmly on arrival, after we had been traveling for over 12 hours from France. Gina had a welcome basket for us, so our fretting about arriving in the evening without groceries was immediately allayed. They showed us around and we were as good as home for nearly a month.
The Villa is as advertised, although words do not capture the charm. It is exceptionally clean and well-maintained. It is an old house. Gina was born in it and regaled us with stales of when cattle were kept in the now renovated lower bedroom! As the days went by, she explained more of its construction over the years, expanding from a very small place to a quite comfortably spacious 3 bedroom home.
The setting is down a gravel road into the woods. We were assured our privacy and it was! If you have mobility issues, all of Italy will be a challenge, ramps are few, steep stairs everywhere. Our Villa was readily accessible, but it does have a narrow, circular stair from the living room to the lower level and patio/pool area.
The backyard is spacious, with a nice covered patio area. Adjacent to it is an attractive pool and covered hot tub. The grounds are on a hillside, an attractive walk but, as noted, difficult for those with mobility issues.
It is a steep hike up hill to the village, which is something of a summer tourist escape. This fall there were only 50 or so people around, so it felt quite empty. We dined several times at the one ristorante, L Orte del prete, several times -- each time to our delight.
Gina & Franco came by each morning to ensure the pool was free of leaves and such. They greeted us with a smile, were quickly responsive to a few confusions we had on how things worked, and often left us a cheery note with a treat. Gina's tiramisu is amazing!
If you want to rest and be quiet; this is a great stay. Toward the end the weather went from beyond delight to chilly and rainy (well, it is November by now!). We did several local trips, but, to be candid, you have to be comfortable with narrow roads & hairpin turns to go visiting. We found the unified cooperative grocery well stocked, with one in nearly every village. It would help to know far more Italian than we do while shopping.
The place was grand. The setting beautiful. But what is most memorable are Gina and Franco. Such lovely people! We left with smiles and a few tears, grateful for their hospitality.
Villa Le Capanne was a fantastic find. Located in Montecastelli Pisano, which is a sleepy hilltop village about 20 minutes from the nearest shops in Castelnuovo and an hour from Siena. The villa is comfortable and well finished, with a gorgeous unheated pool and hot tub overlooking the Tuscan countryside. The owners, Gina and Franco are delightful. They speak good basic English and are incredibly friendly and helpful. They are understandably proud of their villa and they attend unobtrusively every morning (sometimes bearing gifts of food) to tidy and clean the pool area and to remove the rubbish and recycling. If you want to get away from the hustle and bustle of life this is the place for you. We loved the local towns of Volterra and San Gimingnano and even enjoyed the nearby Museum of Geothermic Power. The highlight of our holiday was the private chef, Federico, who we booked for two evenings. He was a fantastic cook and though quite quiet he was very personable and enthusiastic about his cooking. Those meals were the highlight of our lovely holiday.
david and i are just back from a really wonderful 11 days at the villa of Gina and Franco. the villa had everything we needed and a welcome package of food awaited us food in the fridge and a basket of goodies. they were there every morning to clean around pool area and it was a good opportunity to get their advice on places to visit. we had some quiet days and some sight seeing. we visited Volterra, sienna, cortona florence, had a wonderful day on the coast warm sea and sandy beach then back to the villa for swim and hot tub. thank you Gina and Franco
Fabulous villa, located down a private road with fantastic views and no near neighbours. The owners have made this a true "home from home" and have thought of everything to make this a truly relaxing holiday. This has been the family home of Gina for 4 generations, and her love of the property, and the area, certainly shows through. The owners visit each morning - unobtrusively- to ensure the pool and area is kept spotless, occasionally leaving small gifts ( e.g. tiramisu,tomatoes, cake). They will happily share their knowledge of the local area with you, if you wish.
The villa is within walking distance of the village, with a great restaurant, and within an hour of Siena. There are numerous hill towns to visit, if you can pull yourself away from this idyllic villa with private pool and jacuzzi!
It was our second stay at Villa Le Capanne this last summer and still the same enchantment.
At our arrival the fridge was again fully filled of various pieces of food an drinks.
Since our stay last year the floor around the pool and the hot tub ,though it was still in good shape, has been completely renewed.
Gina & Franco are so charming persons showing themselves always attentive to the wellness of their guests , making sure at any time that everything is ok , while they can remain discrete when they come every morning for cleaning the pool and maintaining the outside.
For our second stay in their villla they also offered a meal in a local agriturismo whose one we are keeping an excellent souvenir.
What to say more except thanking them again for all this.
Isa ,Johnny,Cecilia & Andre
Gina and Franco were wonderful hosts. We arrived to a super "welcome pack". The villa was spotless and had all that was required. The pool ( not heated ) and hot tub were a welcome sight at the end of the day. We spent two fabulous weeks in Villa Capanne and if we the chance we are sure to come back. Thank you Gina and Franco
This was our second visit to le Capanne and it did not disappoint. It's the ideal place for lazy days and rest whilst also giving the opportunity to visit some beautiful towns just an short drive away, it's the best of both worlds!. Gina and Franco and the loveliest hosts and could not make our stay any better. Montecastelli is stunning and my sketchbook is full of drawings of the town, L'Orto del Prete is a great, friendly restaurant and within walking distance. A holiday to remember! We can thoroughly recommend Le Cappane and it's fabulous owners!