I wasn't sure I should tell anyone about this delightful estate, and simply keep it a secret. Three trips in four years and certain to return. There are numerous delightful properties spread over a sprawling estate near Montaione. There is a variety of accommodation, catering for families in three bedroom 'townhouses'..(nothing like you think a townhouse looks like !), through to luxury villas for bigger parties. All have a shared pool, and most pools have a much needed loggia. This is classic Tuscan countryside, and ideally situated between all the major Tuscan attractions. Train from Castlefiorentino will take you to Florence (simply easier than the hassle of driving and parking (esp in summer)) and car journeys will get you anywhere you could think of visiting within a two hour radius. The estate is well run, and Sarah the English speaking manager and her staff are excellent. Local supermarket is a ten minute drive away, yet could be on another planet in terms of how the scenery changes within only five kilometers. Total seclusion !. You will need a car. Driving in Tuscany, apart from in the big cities, is relaxed, and Pisa airport is an easy one hour drive away. Our teenagers loved the place, which is a huge testament. Simply enjoy.
Our family has been coming to Fattoria Santo Sefano since 2005. We first discover this place after a Mediterranean cruise ending in Rome. We were very nervous renting a house sight unseen (there were some pictures of the property on their website) not being familiar with the area at all, we took a leap of faith....and have been coming every spring/summer ever since. Sarah Phillips (a very charming no nonsenspe British lady) is the manager/concierge) has been living in Italy for years and knows about everything that goes on in the area and is unbilievebly helpful in all manners necessary to a newbie to this area . Florence is 45 minutes away on the Fi/Pi/ Li ( the hi way running from Florence to Pisa/Livorno. Fattoria Santo Stefano is compromised of single family luxury villas to multi family complexes to vacation apartment cottages. We always stay in the villas because its very convinient for our adult children and friends to share. All the property are very well maintained ( nice, modern bathroom in suites, modern kitchen and appliances. The nearby towns have great country restaurants and groceries stores. This place is unique, tranquil and convenient to a great many Tuscan sights!!!!
We stayed at Fattoria Santo Stefano in late September 2005 and were absolutley delighted with the accomodation, which is set in the rolling hills of Tuscany.
The accomodation is really only an option if you have a car, as it located about 10 minutes out of town.... but to do this part of Tuscany justice, you will need a car. Its also a perfect base from which to visit Siena, Pisa and Florence, all of which are in easy driving distance.
Santo Stefano is quite surreal, the amazing old buildings in which the accomodation is housed, the beautiful gardens (& pool), the exquisite views, and if thats not enough, sample the wonderful olive oil and chianti wine which is grown on the property !!!! Bellisimo!!
The breakfast's are very good too and the proud owners are very helpful on your arrival.
Our room also had a kitchenette which allowed the preparation for a simple dinner, with the bathroom and bedroom being a good size and spotlessly clean.
We had a very pleasant and memorable stay and will always remember the amazing views and buildings. If you are looking for a location away from the bigger towns or cities with a more country/rural setting, we highly recommend Fattoria Santo Stefano.