Friday, 24 January 2014

Tuscany gem

I thought I'm done but I couldn't really sign off on Tuscany without mentioning our accommodation during that amazing week.  Thanks to a referral from a friend, we stayed at a 14th century villa which used to be part of a country residence.  This is a real gem.  

The Castello di Pastine sits on an estate atop a ridge that gave us some of the most amazing views of the country side near Barberino Val D'Elsa.  One magical morning, the towers of San Gimignano emerged from the fog that had rolled in overnight.   You can see that incredible view below.  It was like fairyland.

The living area of our villa - the dining room used to be the bread baking oven!

The lovely terrace outside from where we could see San Gimignano

 Our villa had its own entrance gate and was located in the lower part of the estate but within a short walking distance of the main complex - a group of renovated apartments around the main courtyard.  One of our party stayed in one of the second floor apartments that had its own private terrace - almost the size of the apartment.  They also had a professional kitchen, as you can see. This was where we had the professional chef Giuseppina of the Cucina Giuseppina cook for us. She also gave us a cooking lesson before dinner. What a treat! 

This terrace is higher than the one in front of our villa and is shared by the group of apartments in the upper compound.  Gorgeous views from here too.

The swimming pool area - each apartment has its own area around the pool

Nice view from the hot tub

Well-kept grounds

Gorgeous sunsets!
I'd come back any time.  Thanks, Nancy!

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