Europe

Tuscany, Italy

tuscany1

Culture, History, Gastronomy, Beauty, The List Goes on…

Few places inspire the imagination quite like Tuscany. Stretching from the west coast to the center of the Italian peninsula, its countryside is characterized by sienna-colored hills, sinuous rows of cypress trees, and hill-top villages spiked with campanili and domed cathedrals.

Siena, Florence’s longstanding rival to the south, sits majestically on three hill tops and preserves an incomparable mix of architectural and cultural traditions. While it too is a popular destination for travelers, the Sienese live for themselves, and the fabric and traditions of daily life are every bit as authentic today as they were 400 years ago. The Palio, its famous medieval pageant, inspires ancient passions to this day, culminating in a rowdy horse race in the main “Campo” piazza before crowds of thousands. Each race is preceded by street parties where neighborhoods gather for communal dinners, and the horse for each contrada (city district) is blessed in the parish church.

Chianti and the wine regions around Pienza, Montepulciano and Montalcino offer a portrait of the classic Tuscan landscape – rows of cypress trees punctuate the vineyards, and the brilliant hues of the earth distinguish the stark landscape of the crete. The vistas are spectacular, the wines are renowned – who could ask for anything more? There are even a number of spa towns where you can indulge yourself – San Casciano dei Bagni, where the bagni have been appreciated since Roman times, is one of the most charming (and pampering). Don’t be surprised if you recognize a scene from any number of film classics, like Portrait of a Lady or A Room with a View. Or visit the area around Cetona and Cortona to discover the setting of Frances Mayes’ popular books, Under the Tuscan Sun and Bella Tuscany.

Tuscany Must-Dos and Can’t-Misses…

  • Tasting vini nobili in Montepulciano and Montalcino
  • Partaking in the passeggiata (the evening stroll) along the main street of any medieval town
  • Wandering the galleries of the Uffizi
  • Thermal baths in San Casciano dei Bagni or Bagno Vignoni
  • The gardens at La Foce
  • Pecorino cheese tasting in Pienza and a side visit to San Quirico – two gorgeous towns with few tourists

Tuscany for Kids…

  • A private pasta or pizza-making class with one of Hosted Villas’ chefs
  • A boat ride on Lago Trasimeno
  • The Palio in Siena July 2 or August 16 or the pre-Palio festivities
  • Hot air ballooning above Pienza
  • Hands-on ceramics class
  • Gelato!!!

La Casetta

Charming Tuscan farmhouse

Bedrooms: 2Bathrooms: 3Children: YesMax Occupancy: 4

Il Vallone

A stylish Tuscan farmhouse

Bedrooms: 4Bathrooms: 4Children: YesMax Occupancy: 7

Villa Delle Colline

Villa of the hills

Bedrooms: 4Bathrooms: 5Children: YesMax Occupancy: 8

Cerretone

Sumptuous style in the heart of Chianti

Bedrooms: 5Bathrooms: 5Children: YesMax Occupancy: 10

Il Giardinetto

Stylish country villa

Bedrooms: 5Bathrooms: 5Children: YesMax Occupancy: 10

Podere due Preti

Modern Italian style in old-world setting

Bedrooms: 5Bathrooms: 5Children: YesMax Occupancy: 10

Villa Vico

Spacious hillside villa minutes from Siena

Bedrooms: 5Bathrooms: 5Children: YesMax Occupancy: 10

Borgo dei Santi

Spacious farmstead in Senese hills

Bedrooms: 6Bathrooms: 6Children: YesMax Occupancy: 12

La Colonica

True Italian style near Lucca

Bedrooms: 6Bathrooms: 6Children: YesMax Occupancy: 12

La Scuola

Zen-like elegance in restored schoolhouse

Bedrooms: 6Bathrooms: 6Children: YesMax Occupancy: 12

Campo Dell’Amato

Tuscan living near thermal spas

Bedrooms: 7Bathrooms: 7Children: YesMax Occupancy: 13

Castello Della Staffa

An authentic Italian castle

Bedrooms: 7Bathrooms: 9Children: YesMax Occupancy: 15 (+15 in nearby tower)

La Senese

Country house splendor minutes from Siena

Bedrooms: 7Bathrooms: 5Children: YesMax Occupancy: 14

Villa Nel Bosco

Country living in Chianti

Bedrooms: 7Bathrooms: 7Children: YesMax Occupancy: 14

Villa Porsenna

A unique villa in a Tuscan town

Bedrooms: 7Bathrooms: 7Children: YesMax Occupancy: 14

Il Saliceto

Old-world charm in a garden setting

Bedrooms: 8Bathrooms: 7Children: YesMax Occupancy: 16

Villa Etrusca

A noble country estate below Cortona

Bedrooms: 8Bathrooms: 7Children: YesMax Occupancy: 16

Torre Della Guardia

A gorgeous country estate in the heart of Chianti

Bedrooms: 11Bathrooms: 7Children: YesMax Occupancy: 22

Borgo San Michele

The ultimate Tuscan retreat for groups

Bedrooms: 15Bathrooms: 15Children: YesMax Occupancy: 30

Casa Passerini

Style in the rolling Tuscan hills

Bedrooms: 7Bathrooms: 6Children: YesMax Occupancy: 12

Casa dei Colori

Color and comfort within walking distance of Sarteano

Bedrooms: 5Bathrooms: 4Children: YesMax Occupancy: 10

La Farfalla

A modern gem in a historic setting.

Bedrooms: 4Bathrooms: 3Children: YesMax Occupancy: 8