How to choose the perfect Tuscany accommodation

A sunset at Podere Patrignone, our villa rental in Tuscany, www.patrignone.com
A sunset at Podere Patrignone

Plan the perfect trip to Italy – Part 3

Now, I bet you’re thinking, “Ah-ha, this is where he starts plugging rural Tuscan villa rentals.”

Well, you’d be right. But you’d be wrong too.

Because, as a villa rental owner in Tuscany, the one important lesson we’ve learned over the last few years is, never force a square peg in a round hole. Everyone has different needs and expectations, and if we rent our Tuscan villa in the countryside to someone who really wants a 5* city hotel with room-service, we are going to have a very unhappy guest, and a very stressful time.

So, if you are coming to Tuscany, what kind of accommodation is on offer? Well, the obvious answer is, every kind. Tuscany is visited by tens of thousands every month, and every conceivable accommodation type is available, from luxury 5* spa hotels costing $000’s a night, to camp sites. And you are perfectly capable of deciding for yourself, but here are some things to consider.

City-hotels and apartments – if you want to stay in a city like Siena or Florence, there’s loads to do, plenty of restaurants, museums, shopping, nightlife. They are both beautiful, romantic places. But they are very touristy and busy, and fairly noisy too, though lots of people like that about cities. There are plenty of online sites with discount hotels or apartments to rent. Renting can keep costs down, but you can’t beat a smart hotel for glam-value. In Florence, look for a hotel with a roof-top terrace.

Village B&B’s and apartments – If you’re not a city person, but still want to be able to walk to restaurants and shops, then staying in a small village is the way to go. Some of these have pretty smart hotels, if you’re so inclined, but there are some really unique B&B options too, with owners only too willing to help you with local advice and recommendations. There are the usual apartments too, but you probably won’t have much contact with the owner. A car will probably be essential for getting around.

Farm-stay villa rentals – but if you’re really looking to get away from it all, or looking for somewhere quiet to relax after a busy day sight-seeing, then there are plenty of villas and apartments in the countryside, at all sorts of price-levels. You’ll need a car, and a pool will be near the top of your list (essential if you have kids), but you’ll be able to do day trips to towns and big cities, and still have space to relax and get a good night’s sleep. If you want to see what real Tuscan life is about, rent at a Tuscany ‘agriturismo’, a villa or Tuscan apartment rental on a working farm. You’ll get plenty of helpful advice from the owners, and get to taste their products where they are made. Yum.

The most important thing is to decide what is right for you, and for the people travelling with you, and choose somewhere that fits. Trust me: as a property owner, there is nothing more stressful than having to deal with someone who clearly hasn’t done their research, and has rented something they, or their partner, never wanted.

Have a great holiday!

If you’d like more insider-tips, suggestions, and advice on what to do when you come on vacation in Tuscany, please follow me. Trust me – I’m a local!

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