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High on a hilltop near Cortona on the eastern edge of Tuscany, Villa Cuiano is a sprawling farmhouse with marvelous panoramic views of the Niccone Valley and the distant mountains of Umbria.
The house lies amid extensive gardens, and has a large, well-kept swimming pool. Furnished with tables and chairs, and equipped with a barbecue and oven, the garden is perfect for al fresco meals during the long summer months.
Walkers and nature lovers can take advantage of the many tracks and paths that wind through the surrounding countryside -- even strolling down to the Castello di Pierle, owned by the same family as the Villa -- and one of Tuscany's most striking castles.
If the tranquility and beauty of the surrounding area isn't enough, Villa Cuiano is a perfect base camp from which to explore Tuscany and Umbria. Lake Trasimeno, Italy's fourth largest, is only 20 minutes away. It offers excellent swimming and water sports. The railway station is also 20 minutes away; once on a train, you can be in Florence in one hour, or in Rome in two hours.
The nearest village is Mercatale di Cortona, with its shops, bars, medical facilities, a restaurant, and bank. Cortona is 20 minutes away; while in less than one hour you can be in Siena, Montepulciano, Orvieto, or Perugia.
The farmhouse has been divided into five apartments and a detached stone house -- each decorated in traditional Tuscan style. Stone fireplaces, cotta floors, and dark chestnut-beamed ceilings lend an authentic, welcoming air to the accommodation. These are comfortable flats, with good lighting and simple, classic furnishings.
Apt #1. La Loggia -- Sleeps six. An external staircase leads up from a pergola with views over the Castello. There is a spacious living room with the original fireplace, two double bedrooms -- one with an en-suite bathroom, one single bedroom, a fully-equipped kitchen, and a second bathroom.
Apt #2. La Stalletta -- Sleeps four. This apartment is entered through a small stone-paved square, shaded during the day -- and sunny in the evening. This square is perfect for outdoor dining. The kitchen is fully equipped. There are two bedrooms -- one with a double bed, and the other with two single beds. There is also a shower, bathroom, and a terrace with excellent views.
La Loggia and La Stalletta are adjacent, and can be linked to make a single apartment.
Apt #3. La Stalla -- Sleeps four. On the ground floor, this apartment has such a large living-room and kitchen that it is normally used as the main living and dining area by groups renting the entire villa. The bedrooms (one with a double bed and the other with two singles) are spacious and airy. The bathroom is large, and like the others in the villa, is easily accessible by a wheelchair.
Apt #4. La Loggetta -- Sleeps two to three. This small apartment is ideal as a honeymoon suite, or for a couple with a young child. Access is by an external staircase leading to a small terrace. There is a large living room with a stone fireplace, a well-equipped kitchen, and a spacious double bedroom with a bathroom.
Apt #5. La Cantina -- Sleeps two. Entered through a side garden, this small apartment is ideal for a couple. In addition to the living room and kitchen, there is a large, roomy bedroom which is perfectly cool and comfortable -- even during the hottest months of summer. There is also a bathroom with a tub.
Casa Luca -- Sleeps six. This detached house is 20 meters from Villa Cuiano. It has two bedrooms (with double beds) on the first floor and another bedroom (with a double bed) in the mansard. On the first floor you'll find the living/dining room with sofa, armchairs and a beautiful fireplace. Attached to the this area is a fully equipped kitchen and a bathroom. Casa Luca has a large balcony with a fantastic view -- perfect for al fresco dining. There is also a beautiful patio on the ground level - ideal for a pleasant moment reading a book or sunbathing.
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