Villa Il Giardino is a 19th Century country house with a private swimming pool situated on 4 hectares (10 acres) that was recently restored and renovated from top to bottom by local craftsmen using the highest quality, original materials. The villa is positioned on the hillside outside the charming walled town of Paciano and provides magnificent views of Lake Trasimeno below and the rolling hills of Tuscany and Umbria. The villa's location provides a quiet, private retreat while being centrally located between Florence and Rome on the Tuscany/Umbria border. As noted below, a short drive takes you to many places of interest.
The villa, which sleeps 8, has 3 bedrooms plus a separate sitting area/den with a sofa bed that can be converted into a fourth bedroom. The 4 full bathrooms, 2 of which are en suite, were designed using local stone and antique tiles. The house has original terra cotta floors/oak beamed ceilings and is filled with antiques but features all modern conveniences.
Location: The central location of the villa between Florence and Rome on the Tuscany/Umbria border places you within a short drive of a number of Italy's most visited destinations, including Siena (90km/55mi), Assisi (60km/40mi), Orvieto (65km/40mi), Perugia (30km/18mi), Montepulciano (35km/22mi), Cortona (30km/18mi), Citta della Pieve (17km/10 mi), Castiglione del Lago and Chiusi (both 13km/8mi). Additionally, the high speed train stops at the local station in Chiusi less than 10 miles from the villa and will drop you in the center of Florence in 1 hour or in Rome in 1.5 hours.
The charming hilltop town of Paciano, which was named by the Italian government as one of Italy's most beautiful towns, is just a mile from the villa. The slightly larger town of Panicale is just a bit farther down the road. A number of restaurants are within a few miles of the villa including my favorite, Il Casale, which is located on the hillside outside Paciano only about half a mile from the villa
The House and Its History: Villa Il Giardino ('The Garden') is so named because of its historical abundance of fruit and olive trees. While it is no longer kept as an orchard, the fifty olive trees on the property provide the supply of olive oil for the house, which guests are welcome to use. A number of fruit trees still adorn the property as well as an herb garden and a seasonal vegetable garden, all of which guests are encouraged to enjoy.
The swimming pool was added in 2008 and is tucked into the hillside below the house, providing privacy and stunning views of the countryside and Lago Trasimeno. A lighted stone pathway leads you to the pool and the beautifully constructed stone hardscape that surrounds it, which includes a soothing fountain. The pool area has a solar-heated shower as well as a table and chairs with umbrella and lounge chairs.
The house has a number of other outdoor seating areas that provide the option of sun or shade, including a table and chairs for outdoor dining.
Getting to Il Giardino and Around the Countryside: Paciano's location only 10 miles from the major A1 motorway (Chiusi-Chianciano Exit) makes it easily accessible. Additionally, both high speed Intercity trains as well as local regional trains stop at the local train station at Chiusi. Distances to major transportation hubs are as follows:
Rome Fiumicino Airport: 200 km/125 mi;
Rome Ciampino Airport: 188 km/117 mi;
Florence Peretola Airport: 150 km/95 mi;
Perugia San Egidio Airport: 46 km/29 mi;
Chiusi-Chianciano Train Station:13 km/8 mi.
Driving around the Italian countryside is pleasant and scenic and you will find that the roads are well-maintained with good signage. As noted above, the villa is within driving distance of numerous points of interest and, on clear days, you can even see Cortona and Montepulciano from the terrace.