This property impresses at first sight with its superb location and its wonderful garden. A small road which meanders its way up the hill leads to the house, coming from San Gimigniano the last 800 m are on a dirt road. You will soon realise that you are in one of the lovelies parts of Tuscany - a seemingly paradise-like landscape formed over centuries by the patient efforts of the local farmers. Set on a hilltop between San Gimignano and Certaldo, you enjoy extensive views from the garden of the house: to fields bordered by cypresses, vineyards, olive groves and isolated farms, as far as the eye can see. You see the Chianti in front of you, and the hills of the Apennines further in the distance. On clear days, the view extends to the Apuanian Alps.
The ancient natural stone farmhouse is divided into five apartments. There are four guest flats for couples; the friendly owner of the house, Mario, lives on the ground floor with his family. Mario tends the extensive grounds, and the luxuriant garden thrives in his gifted hands. Mario and his wife Annalinda are firm believers in maintaining tradition and have used traditional Tuscan materials in the renovation of the farm building, retaining the thick stone walls which keep the interiors blissfully cool. The four apartments are suitable for couples, therefore there are never more than a total of 8+3 people here at one time. The apartment on the ground floor (Sotto) is particularly comfortably laid out and has its own entrance and terrace. The three flats on the first floor (one of which with balcony) are smaller in size - a stone stairway leads to the upper floor.
Podere al Prato (Estate on the Meadow) is located in a lovely garden. The approximately 6000 sqm garden is a green oasis and a real delight. Countless flowers, blooms and bushes adorn the sunlit lawns. There are various types of trees: stone oaks, olive trees, cypresses and walnut trees to name but a few, and around 20 different types of fruit - you are welcome to pick them. Many types of flowers ensure there are wonderful blooms from the start of spring until the autumn: iris, oleander, peony and above all a marvellous range of different rose varieties. This is very advantageous for beekeeping of course, and you will certainly be offered a taste of the homemade honey. In several corners of the garden you can find tables and chairs under shady trees. Here you can retire to an idyllic niche and read, write, paint or chat over a glass of wine and enjoy your meals. Only birdsong and the chirping of crickets interrupt the silence. The pool with Roman steps is located on the most panoramic side of the garden. At the four corners of the pool there are sunshades and sunbeds available for the four apartments. Please note that some steps lead down to the pool and garden area.
The mediaeval towers of San Gimignano are only 6 km away. Just as close is the less well-known, small walled town of Certaldo. A cable car goes up to the romantic ancient quarter on the hilltop. In the 'new' Certaldo there is a railway station on the Florence-Siena line. In Certaldo you can park your car and travel to these cities by train. From Podere al Prato you can thus visit these two jewels of Tuscany by train and leave parking worries behind you. In the surrounding woods there are marked trekking paths. You can shop in Certaldo or Poggibonsi. The next restaurant and a bar is approx. 1 km away - you could walk there. Here in the country there are numerous excellent trattorias. In this region you can try out a different speciality restaurant every evening. The helpful owners of the house speak English and French and will provide you with good tips. They can book for you the main art galleries (Uffizi, Accademia, Pitti, etc.). Furthermore they have a special agreement with a nearby (4 km) Wellness Centre for a 20% discount on the daily entry and on all the beauty treatments.
Additional amenities include: several outdoor areas in the garden, toys for children in the garden, oven or microwave, electric kettle, iron and ironing board, electric filter coffee machine, for communal use: laundry with washing machine, 4-ring gas hob, air conditioning in the apartments tre and quattro, fan in all bedrooms and hair dryer in all units, pizza oven and barbecue area, all apartments are equipped with satellite TV, mediterranean-style swimming pool with roman steps....Read more
As featured in USA TODAY and recommended by Travel + Leisure in its annual Villa Guide:
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