Apartment in Polinago, Emilia Romagna, Italy: Immerse yourself in quiet mountain life or absorb the beauty and culture of the area.
Stephen C Brown
- english, french, italian, A little German
About Stephen C Brown
In 2013 we made the momentous decision to move to Emilia Romagna. We found a house that fulfilled our requirements, the main one being beautiful views in every possible direction! Family and friends visit us here regularly. We live a relaxed country life with our dog and cats, and have relished the work involved in renovating this large house which had been empty for twenty years. We have been thrilled by the warm welcome of all the local people we have met, and are delighted to feel a part of the community in such a short space of time. My wife Caroline grew up in Northern Italy where she learned Italian before her family returned to England. The area appealed to us both for the setting and the climate. We have full-blown winters with lots of snow and summers where the temperatures often sit around the low 30s for weeks at a time. This is a lovely quiet environment, which is also close enough to cultural centres to fulfil a broad range of holiday requirements.
Stephen C Brown purchased this Apartment in 2012
Why Stephen C Brown chose Polinago
When you sit outside the house you hear absolutely nothing except the occasional bird of prey, working tractor or chainsaw. Very occasionally you hear classical music coming across the valley, and we think this may be the local farmer playing music to his cows which produce milk for Parmigiano Reggiano cheese! The peace and tranquility is the main reason we chose this location, as well as the chance to live a simple life without the influence of too much modern technology and noise. Our lives and diets have changed immeasurably simply by following the Italian way of using fruit and vegetables when they are in season, rather than buying everything all year round from the supermarkets.
What makes this Apartment unique
There is an impressive array of seasonal foods available in Emilia Romagna. You may want to try the Modena balsamic vinegar, the Parma ham or the Parmigiano Reggiano parmesan cheese, not to mention the range of wines also on our doorstep. This is a large and airy apartment only recently completed, and is easy to get to from Bologna airport (about 70 minutes). We supply a simple welcome pack of food and drink so that you don't have to rush out shopping the moment you get here.
Check-out: 10:00 AM
Cot available in bedroom 1.
100% refund if canceled at least 60 days before arrival date. 50% refund if canceled at least 30 days before arrival date.
Amazing location and views, very nice apartment and pool – and excellent hosts. With all 5-star ratings already at the website, it still exceeded our expectations.
To start with the latter, we had received very detailed driving instructions only to be noticed shortly before arrival that the nearest road was closed due to construction works. Stephen was therefore receiving us at the crossroads leading us an alternative and hard-to-find route to the house. Arriving late afternoon we found the kitchen and fridge stocked with basic supplies allowing us a good breakfast next day without having to think about shopping the first day. What a reception of guests (but very descriptive of Stephen and Caroline as hosts)!
Throughout our stay Stephen and Caroline demonstrated the exact right balance of giving us privacy and quietness and on the other hand being available and hospitable providing lots of useful information, advice and even having us in for drinks one evening.
The apartment and facilities turned out to be just as promised. Three nice bedrooms, 2 bathroom (1 en-suite) and big living room / kitchen provided ample space for 6 guests (we were 5). Also all appliances and kitchenware was excellent (even several sharp knives which we find rare in rentals).
The pool area was very nice as well with sunchairs and also possibilities to sit in the shade of the parasol.
And the views…. The pictures in the website does not serve it justice – they are amazing. No wonder why Stephen and Caroline chose to live here!
We have stayed in many rental homes around Europe, but this apartment is definitely the best equipped, biggest and with the best sense of details. We would be delighted to come back some day.
Many thanks for your excellent and thorough review. We are delighted that you all had a good holiday and got home safely. I hope you remember us when you use your Parmigiano!
We look forward to seeing you again in the future. In the meantime please recommend us to your friends.
Enjoy the rest of your summer
Stephen and Caroline
Superb, well presented property, idyllic setting
The property is well presented and well equipped. The owners are very welcoming and offer great advice about the local area. We used the property as a base for day trips to Milan, Lake Garda and more locally to Modena to the Ferrari and Panini museums. A trip to the local Parmesan factory in Monchio with Stephen is well worth a visit too. A week wasn't long enough for us to explore the area so we will be going back. The views from the property are sensational too !
An incredible location, villa and host!
Our stay at Casa Brown was an amazing experience and we would highly recommend!
We stayed at the villa following a weeks travelling in Italy and it was the perfect place to relax and unwind. The apartment was well furnished with all the facilities you need and three large bedrooms (one with ensuite).
The location of the villa is ideally located centrally in Italy to allow you to explore the surrounding area and Stephen and Caroline were eager to share their own recommendations and ideas of places to see.
The view from the pool (and all around the villa) is incredible with the photos not doing this justice! The villa is located in the mountains south of Modena and there is no noise pollution allowing for total isolation and relaxation.
Stephen and Caroline make excellent hosts, helping us find the local supermarket, giving us all the information on the local area, including a suggestion to walk to the top of the mountain and see the Milky Way (highly recommended), and even going so far as to giving us a lift to a local restaurant to allow the designated driver an evening off!
Our group consisted of four 24 year olds and I would highly recommend this villa to anyone looking to enjoy Central Italy!
Amazing Holiday and thanks again to Caroline and Stephen!
Thanks for your generous review. You will be most welcome to stay again in the future to explore more local authentic Italy.
A wonderful and peaceful week at Casa Brown
My wife, adult son and I just returned home after spending an incredible week at Casa Brown and surroundings, located up in the hills between Polinago and Monchio in the Emilia Romagna region of Northern Italy. Caroline and Stephen ensured that our stay in their beautiful home was perfect, right from the beginning. Before arriving at their home they quickly responded to our questions about the home and the area via email. Several days before leaving for their home they sent a very detailed set of driving instructions, including where to get some groceries and supplies. Upon our arrival we were warmly greeted by Caroline and Stephen and shown to the spacious, comfortable and very clean apartment on the upper floor of their newly renovated farm house. We were very thankful to find a fridge stocked with some basics to get us started, including eggs, milk, a bottle of the local rose frizzante, a cold beer, and some delicious homemade cherry jam, chutney, and limoncello. This was such a wonderful surprise after a long day of flying and driving! During our stay we explored the nearby bigger towns of Modena, Verona, and Bologna, as well as some smaller gems, such as Brandola. While the area is steeped in history it is also a food lovers paradise and Caroline and Stephen had plenty of advice for some local trattorias and pizzerias! We were never disappointed! They have organized several binders for their guests which help with everything you might want to know about their home, where to eat, and what to see. Of course, they are also very accommodating and were more than happy to share their time and their love and knowledge of the area. We spent a fun morning with them both on a tour of the local parmigiano-reggiano factory! We also enjoyed spending some time relaxing by the pool and looking out over the valley from our perch on high. It being the end of July, the valley bottom got very warm, but up at Casa Brown there were always cool breezes in the evening. We always slept very well. Caroline and Stephen obviously love their home in the hills and they are very gracious, friendly, and helpful hosts. We will be highly recommending their home to all our family and friends. And, if lucky enough, we would love to return for another stay in their home. Thank you Caroline and Stephen for your hospitality and your friendship!
What a lovely apartment with gorgeous views
I cannot recommend this property enough, unless you hate mountain roads ! The apartment has everything you could reasonably ask for. The owners are attentive and genuine and have mastered the art of not appearing to be in your face whilst trying to look after you. The position of the property is simply stunning and definitely don't make assumptions from the drive from Bologna - which is rather flat and uninteresting. To wake to the views from the bedrooms every day was a true privilege and left me somewhat envious of Caroline and Stephen.
There is lots to do around particularly if you are a car nut or just relax around the pool, drink fine Italian wine and enjoy the rest.
Coast/Beach: We are situated roughly midway between the Mediterranean and Adriatic coasts. The house is 720 meters above sea level. From Monte Cimone you can see the sea on both sides of Italy on a clear day.
Travel: We are approximately 70 minutes from Bologna airport and car hire is essential so that you can explore the area.
Collection from and delivery to the airport can be arranged by separate agreement.
Distances: Nearest basic shop/bakery is approx 7 minutes away in the car. Small supermarket with all requirements is 15 minutes away by car. Larger supermarkets available in Pavullo (35 mins) and Sassuolo (35 mins). The city of Modena is just under an hour from here and Bologna is over an hour away. Both have a wide range of cultural and historical sights and places of interest to visit. Venice, Verona, Como, Milano and Firenze are all within approximately three hours of our house.
Locally: Wonderful mountain pizzeria Taverna del Brutto (see Trip Advisor) is just ten mins away. Range of bars, banks, butcher, chemist, baker and small shops available in Polinago. Beautiful churches and shrines in all towns and villages. Parmesan cheese dairies are open for visits and we can arrange guided tours very locally.