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Villa Maria is a beautifully restored vacation home with four large bedrooms and 3 full baths, a half bath and vanity. Maria is perfect for 8 people; however, all rooms are spacious so it is possible to add a bed to each bedroom to accommodate children. For groups with need for more space, an adjacent cottage is also available.
Incomparable private setting: Maria is set among vineyards, olive groves and chestnut forests, and is located on a large estate that has been making wine and olive oil for over a thousand years. The views are expansive, of the Lucca and Pisa valley, the forest and the wine estate.
The extensive gardens are private, peaceful and abundant; guests are welcome to use the bounty of the herb and vegetable gardens, lemon trees and orchard or pick some of the prolific flowers for a table decoration or vase in a bedroom. You may also go foraging for wild greens and herbs, including asparagus, fennel, mushrooms, wild mint, and more. A large gas-fired grill stands under a shady tree. A pool sits on one of the terraces with a view of the valley. The surrounding estate offers great opportunities for long walks among the vineyards, olive groves, and forest.
Amid the charms of Toscana: The villa is in the hills 8 kilometers from the jewel town of Lucca in northwest Tuscany, with its famed Renaissance walls, Medieval center, Roman amphitheater, and Baroque gardens. It is about an hour from Florence, and approximately 40 minutes from the quaint fishing village of Lerici, the fashionable beach town of Forte di Marmi, and the happening beaches of Viareggio.
Also close by is the Cinque Terre; Pisa; the Garfagnana, the Tuscan mountain playground, and its national park containing the marble mountains surrounding Carrara. A little further is the famed Etruscan town of Volterra, San Gimignano and Siena. The area boasts two excellent wine DOC’s, Colline Lucchese and Montecarlo. In addition, there are nearby golf courses, spas, and excellent shopping.
Your Home in Tuscany: The feel of a five-hundred-year-old rustic Tuscan dwelling has been preserved, while providing amenities expected by 21st century guests. The house is furnished with antiques, the high ceilings are of terra cotta and chestnut, and the floors are the original cotto. Bathrooms are modern, with counters of marble, and there is plenty of hot water.
Because I like to cook, the kitchen is lavishly equipped with utensils and up-to-date appliances and, of course, colorful dishes and beautiful table linen. If you’d rather be at the table instead of the kitchen, we suggest you use the services of our excellent cook. You can dine al fresco under the leafy pergola, or in the chestnut-beamed dining room. The dining room contains the original grand fireplace and wood-fired oven. There is another fireplace in the living room. The library is well-furnished with Italian and European travel books, as well as general reading.
Windows are large and numerous and equipped with retractable screens. There is central heating for the winter. Sea breezes make the house comfortable in the summer, and all rooms are equipped with fans.
All linens, for bedrooms, bathrooms, kitchen and dining room, are provided. The house has a washing machine, dishwasher, hairdryers, iron and ironing board, and racks on which to dry laundry. The sea breeze makes a great dryer, fresh and quick!
We can help with whatever you want to do in Tuscany: With notice, catering is available, and additional cleaning service can be contracted. We can arrange cooking lessons, a pizzamaker to make pizza for your group in the wood-fired oven; wine tours; walking tours; car service; and guides for Lucca, walking or touring the Garfagnana mountain area, the Carrara marble mountains, Puccini’s haunts, museums and other sites in Florence, or any other places and activities, according to your interests. All our staff speak English charmingly and are skilled in their tasks.
Both outdoor and indoor games are provided, including bocce, badminton, board games, cards, jigsaw puzzles and more.
For the comfort of everyone, the accommodations are non-smoking. Well-trained pets are welcome, with notice.
Maria is a dream place to be in all seasons: Every season has its charms: short museum lines and pappardelle di cinghiale by the grand fireplace in winter; lamb and a riot of flowers in the spring; fireflies and abundant veggies in the summer; the vendemmia (grape harvest), olive pressing, and porcini mushrooms in the fall.
It’s my pleasure: Maria has been a wonderful vacation home for me for twelve years, and it’s satisfying to extend that pleasure to others – you will have excellent accommodations, beautiful surroundings and entrée to the incomparable joys of Tuscany. I am happy to make suggestions about what to do and see and the best shops and services, where to get the best cappuccino in the world, the nicest cut of beef, or the tastiest plate of pasta.
Upon arrival, you will be greeted with maps of the area, restaurant recommendations, sight-seeing/shopping information and . . . a glass of wine and traditional Tuscan cookies.
Services included in the rental fee: water, electricity, gas for cooking and hot water, weekly cleaning and fresh linens, grounds and pool maintenance
Fees not included in the rental cost: cleaning and damage deposit of 400 Euro (used if cleaning is necessary beyond normal expectations or damage beyond normal wear aqnd tear).
Services upon request: cleaning/laundry at €15 per hour; additional linen at €10 per person; additional wood at €14 per quintale.
Communications: Service from all European cell phone providers work well in the area, as well as international Blackberry and I-Phone service. Wi-fi is operational in the house.
Keywords: villa, countryside, views, farmhouse, rustic, historical, pool, gardens
From every room, there is a view over the wooded valleys and hills to the Lucca and Pisa valleys...moreless
Sports & Adventure Activities
Seating for 12 people
Iron & Board
All linens for bedrooms, bath, kitchen and dining room are provided...moreless
Parking Off Street
(2) One grand fireplace in the dining room with adjacent wood burning oven and another fireplace in the living room...moreless
Original wood burning oven, great for making homemade pizzas!...moreless
Our cook, specializing in the Lucchese kitchen, is available to provide delicious meals...moreless
Dishes & Utensils
Fully, in fact lavishly, equipped with pots and pans on a hanging rack, lots of utensils, new stovetop and oven, refrigerator, dishwasher, microwave, many small appliances, including food processor, mixer, juicer, gelato maker, breadmaker, pasta machine, and many et ceteras....moreless
Starter supplies of herbs and spices, milk, olive oil, salt, pepper, wine, sugar, flour, etc....moreless
Lanai / Gazebo:
In Italy this would be called a pergola; at Villa Maria it is a large stone-paved area with a vine-covered overhead shelter, with a candelabra and atmospheric lighting. An amazing place for a outdoor dinner with the view of the Lucca hillside....moreless
High Season: May-Oct €2400/week Low Season: Nov-Apr €1800/week plus heat
A deposit of 50% of the total is payable upon booking; the rest is due
two months before arrival. We will inform you of the equivalent
amount in your home currency when payments are due.
Home currency amount is subject to exchange rate fluctuations.
Payment may be made by check or by wire transfer.
Note: Until confirmed, rates are subject to change without notice.
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Pay with an approved method (credit card, check, or bank transfer) to protect your payment up to $1,000. Before making a payment always call the owner at the number listed on our website, and never use instant money transfer services such as Western Union and MoneyGram.
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Villa Maria is the perfect place for an authentic Tuscan experience. We can help you enhance your Italian vacation and arrange a variety of unique, personalized experiences including cooking lessons, wine tours and guides for the Lucca, Gargagnana mountain area, Florence, Puccini's haunts, and much, much more. We provide recommendations for the best restaurant, sites, out-of-the-ordinary shopping experiences and whatever else you may be interested in.
With notice, an accomplished chef can be available for individual meals or for the duration of your stay, with notice, and for longer stays, additional cleaning services can be contracted.
Year Purchased: 2000
Why the Owner Chose Pieve Santo Stefano: The question was never 'why'; the question was always 'why not'. Warm and welcoming people, a house with history, the quiet of the countryside, a kitchen that supports my passion/obsession for cooking, 360 degree views, marvelous wine country, exquisite olive oil, quick access to the best features of Tuscany including the beaches on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea, the medieval town of Lucca, the tourist favorites of Pisa and Florence, and on and on.
The Unique Benefits at this Villa: The loudest sound is the birds, the popping of a champagne cork, or the sound of children giggling in the pool. The bounty of nature is at your disposal; wild greens, the kitchen herb garden or the vegetable garden offer everything you could need for an unforgettable Italian cooking and dining experience. Later, you can walk it off among the vineyards, olive groves and lush forest. A five-minute drive brings you to my favorite restaurant; a 20 minute drive to the jewel town of Lucca; 40 minutes to the sea, and an hour to the Renaissance city of Florence.