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We thoroughly enjoyed our stay in Antonio and Fabiana's beautiful home. They were the perfect hosts and the villa and grounds were very tranquil with stunning views - we enjoyed being away from the crowds but within easy reach of the Cinque Terre and lovely Italian towns such as Pisa and Lucca, not to mention the sweet little town of Ortonovo itself. We arrived in the early evening and were greeted by our hosts and a delicious spread of tasty treats prepared by Fabiana. The beautiful, well equipped kitchen/sitting room which led onto the garden was also stocked with breakfast items which was a very thoughtful touch and a nice surprise. As a family of 4 adults the accommodation worked perfectly for us with one bedroom and ensuite upstairs and one downstairs. We really wished we could have stayed longer and definitely hope to return.
If I had any concerns about this villa it was the low number of reviews on the HomeAway website. My review will hopefully alleviate similar concerns from others. Contact with the villa owner was always answered promptly and courteously. We arrived on 4th September for a 10 night stay and were met by Marinella – the local contact. As Marinella did not speak English, Giancarlo supported with perfect English and gave us his mobile number should we need support.
The villa was spotlessly clean and well prepared. Bedrooms and bathrooms were spacious and a good size. Kitchen equipment was good and the large lounge furnished with traditional furniture was fitting with the house and area. TV is Italian channels only and there’s good reliable wifi. Large secure gardens are well presented and there was an undercover area for our car. The villa maintained a comfortable temperature despite +30deg outside. We spent most of our time in the garden with its lovely mountain views.
The villa is located in a pleasant area surrounded by some good quality properties. The access road is narrow (typical for Italy) but we managed comfortably even with our large car. The local shops and supermarkets are good and we tried some of the local small restaurants’ that were also good and inexpensive. The villa is 5 mins drive from the sea and 10 mins drive from Massa, the nearest big town. We visited Pisa one day however we did not manage to get to Florence or Siena which aren’t too far away. A drive through the local Apuan Alp mountains however is a must with magnificent scenery and sights of the marble quarries. A car is necessary for this area.
None really however we were favourite food for the mosquitoes when sitting outside and were nibbled by the local insects despite the fly screens on the windows. Insect repellent is a must and ‘bite cream’ recommended.
It is worth pointing out that the villa is one of the best we have staying in over many years of villa & French Gite holidays however the marble stairs to the bedrooms are steep so for anyone with mobility issues it is worth taking note.
In conclusion, this is a great place to holiday & relax and certainly has our recommendation.