The piazza is abuzz with people enjoying the outdoor cafes. Summer is in full swing with all the small local towns celebrating in some form or other, but you can be sure food and wine is always a feature of their festivals. This is the time when the town is at its liveliest and yet it is never flooded with tourists the way many Tuscan towns are. Cetona preserves its character and you never feel you are just one in a thousand tourists.
The scene from our windows on the piazza changes with the seasons and never fails to charm. Here you are in the heart of a small Tuscan town and you can observe the daily habits of its inhabitants and participate in the pleasant rituals and routines that make life here so delightful and relaxing. No need for a car to arrive at two of the best restaurants in the area, which are a stroll across the piazza and visible from our windows.
There is always life in the piazza any time of year. You will enjoy observing the daily routine of the Cetonesi as they go about their lives. Linger over a cappuccino in the piazza or enjoy a glass of wine at Nilo's, where trays of delicious nibbles accompany a drink order. This is our definition of happy hour!
At the Saturday morning market in the piazza you will marvel at the abundance of produce for sale. Not to mention the local cheeses, the hand sliced gourmet prosciutto and the giant 'porchetta'. Great between slabs of local bread. Did I mention the bakery downstairs? The scent of fresh bread greets you every morning. Nip down for their delicious whole wheat croissants filled with apricot jam and bring them upstairs for breakfast.
The location of our apartment lets you participate in every day life, not just see it from a tourist's point of view. We have a front row view with five windows on the main piazza of Cetona, which has been called one of the most beautiful medieval towns of Tuscany and featured in 'The Most Beautiful Villages of Tuscany'.
Here, everything you need is on your doorstep: restaurants, cafes, markets, grocery stores selling local delicacies. Pizzas, pasta dishes and a selection of local wines and craft beers are available at our downstairs cafe.
Read our reviews and you will see how much our guests enjoy living in a small town where the rhythms of life don't seem to have changed and tourists are few. As an English/Italian couple living in the States, we know that modern conveniences, such as wireless internet, a washer and dryer are important to our guests and we provide many extras, including our insider tips to places of interest.
Although you may be tempted to spend your vacation just soaking up the local atmosphere in town, there are numerous charming hill towns within an easy 30 to 45 minute drive away. The main Rome-Florence highway is 15 minutes from Cetona and the train station of Chiusi is only 10 minutes. From Chiusi there is a regular service to Rome and Florence. Trains also go to Cortona, Siena, Arezzo and many other lovely places.
The apartment has an interesting history, it has been a convent, town offices and many other things from the the mid 1700s. The coffered ceilings, frescoes and many other features are typical of the houses of nobility of those times. Located on the second floor (US), or what Italians call the 'piano nobile' (where nobles lived) it consists of a huge room comprising kitchen/ dining/ living room with original terracotta tiles, and two windows looking onto the piazza. The long refectory-style table is pefect for get-togethers of up to ten people. Oriental rugs and the marvellous frescoed walls make you feel as if you are in another age.
Across the handsome entry hall, there is a study, three bedrooms and two bathrooms. Two bedrooms have a view onto a courtyard garden, the other onto the piazza. One of the bedrooms has an 'ensuite' bathroom, the other bedrooms share a bathroom.
A separate room on the mezzanine contains a washing machine and dryer. There is also a communal terrace overlooking a verdant tranquil courtyard.
Our aim is to make guests feel as if this is their home for the duration of their stay, that's why we supply wi-fi internet access, a printer, an Italian cell phone for local calls,, adapters for your electronics, a washer and dryer, a microwave and anything else we can think of.
If there is anything else you require, we have a lovely friend in Cetona, an American lady, who can answer any questions and provide back up.
For more specific information on the area, go to the tourist office, it is right in the piazza. There you can find a good selection of maps of local hikes and many suggestions of what to do in the area. I'm also happy to suggest tailor made itineraries for excursions to places that will make your stay really unique and memorable.
In the apartment you will find our own 'insider's guide'. Many guests have commented that they have found our recommendations have been key to their enjoyment of Cetona and neighbouring towns.