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“Wonderful stay abroad” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Villa Il Paradisino

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Villa Il Paradisino
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Via Cafiero, 57 | Colonnata, 50019 Sesto Fiorentino, Italy   |  
Hotel amenities
Certificate of Excellence 2014
New York
1 review
“Wonderful stay abroad”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 8, 2010

My husband and I were taking his elderly parents on their first trip to Italy and wanted a quiet home base to tour both Florence and the surrounding area of Tuscany. We have previously traveled through Tuscany and have often expounded on the beauty of the scenery, the wonderful food and the kind people. All of these were true here; the villa and its grounds are very serene and our hostess Costanza was delightful. The villa is only two train stops from Florence or very close to highway connections, so we could easily sightsee, even shop the central market, and then to prepare a family dinner while the parents sat and recharged themselves in the garden. When we did not want to prepare our own dinner, Costanza made wonderful recommendations for dinners out.

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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105 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (15)
Date | Rating
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English first
Columbia SC
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 21, 2010

Last November my husband and I had the opportunity to spend ten days at Villa Il Paradisino. There are only good things to say about these apartments. Each apartment is beautiful and spacious with its own personality. Upon arriving we had fresh flowers throughout the apartment which were beautiful for a week. The linens were crisp and the towels were thick and fluffy. Included in the kitchen were all of the necessary tools for those who want to cook.
Costanza and her family were gracious beyond words. They shared fresh eggs and their own freshly squeezed olive oil—which is absolutely delicious—with us. Costanza took us to see how olives are crushed and olive oil is procured. She took time to help us locate a GPS system and shared the history of her family’s beloved Villa Il Paradisino. Of course, Costanza will also give you all of the tourist information concerning where to eat and which sites to visit.
It was cold and rainy two of the days we were in Sesto Fiorentino and we chose to stay in our lovely apartment all day. It was so relaxing and enjoyable to remain in our beautiful Italian home. I also spent time just walking and enjoying the beautiful gardens within the walls of the Villa Il Paradisino. The estate is like an oasis in the town of Sesto Fiorentino. Surrounding the estate is a bustling city.
We rented a car and found that a GPS system was extremely beneficial. We found the city confusing to drive in and had a difficult time reading the map.
Would I stay here again? I just hope that I have the opportunity to do so. I felt like a princess living in an apartment which was furnished with precious family antiques; and I rather enjoyed that feeling.

  • Stayed November 2009, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Cape Cod
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 25, 2010

Came to us recommended by friends. This beautiful villa and gracious hostess were beyond our expectations.

  • Stayed October 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Palm Beach Gardens, FL
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 14, 2009

The first week of November, 2009 my husband and I stayed 5 nights at Villa Paradisino. I’ve just finished reading some of the wonderful traveler reviews of Villa Paradisino, and I hope that I can add something helpful to convince future travelers what a rare and worthwhile property this is to include in your trip to Italy. If you’ve ever seen the movie “Under the Tuscan Sun” and wondered where you could find a beautiful, historic, expertly restored Italian villa, set within a walled garden/farm of olive and fruit trees, vegetables and flowers, yet within 5 minutes walking distance to the heart of a perfect, picturesque Tuscan town, with interesting and charming characters and LOTS of incredibly delicious home-made food, THIS IS THE PLACE.

As an architect, I have a great appreciation for beautiful buildings, and I also tend to notice the details and demand a lot from travel accommodations. Villa Paradisino, and its host, Costanza, exceeded my expectations in every possible way. We stayed in the Limonaia Suite, which like other reviews have noted, was even more beautiful than the photos. The ancient stone floor and timbered ceiling room is furnished with dark wood antique pieces, and enormous armoire, a very cozy bed, sofa and several chairs. Both impressive and comfortable, I felt like I was royalty in this gorgeous space. Just the bathroom was a like a trip to the most glamorous spa, with a state-of-the-art jaccuzzi tub and round glass shower, heated towels, plush robes, fragrant soap, and gorgeous turquoise tilework. The Villa’s architecture and gardens are amazing, and I suggest you view the many photos on-line. What you can't see in the photos is that even though the Villa looks like it is in the countryside, it is actually right in the middle of town. An ancient stone wall surrounds the huge property, and once you exit thru the huge, yellow wooden gate, you are on a street like any other within the town, close to shopping and amenities. Another feature not conveyed in the beautiful photos is how much our host, Costanza, added to the enjoyment of our trip. From the fresh flowers in our room, to making restaurant reservations, to helping us buy train tickets, to using her cell phone to help us contact our daughter, she was always very gracious, charming and cheerful. She was always available to us, and even made several phone calls for us (in Italian) to help coordinate the rest of our trip. Costanza offered to make us several meals, to our delight, and these were served in a beautiful room of the family home, which is separate but adjacent to the guest suites. Both the breakfast and dinner, besides being delicious, were so beautifully presented and served, I could not image a more pampered and memorable experience. The many courses of dinner were served with several different wines, and some of the ingredients, including the olive oil (the BEST I have ever tasted), came directly from the Villa’s gardens. The food was generous and expertly prepared, and Costanza geared the menu to our personal likes and dislikes, and included vegetarian options for my daughter. Costanza’s meals were by far the best food we had during the entire trip, and just sitting in that historic, candlelit room filled with beautiful antiques and paintings, was a really unique experience I am glad to have shared with my family.

I selected Villa Paradisino in Sesto Fiorentino as a destination because the Villa was within walking distance of my daughter’s college “study abroad” program, housed at a nearby property. I would not have known about Villa Paradisino otherwise, since like most tourists, I would not have considered accommodations outside of Florence. Yet staying at Villa Paradisino turned out to be the highlight of our 10-day trip Italy. The location is actually ideal for visiting both Florence and lots of other towns in Tuscany. We went into Florence several days by train, taking a pretty walk thru town to the Sesto Station, stopping for delicious pastries in a shop along the way. The trip is fast and easy, and the train arrives in Florence at the Santa Maria Novella station, which is in the heart of the city, only about 5 minutes walk to the Duomo. We also took the train in the other direction to visit the medieval walled town of Lucca, and easy day trip, and well worth seeing. Sesto Fiorentino is also quite picturesque, and we enjoyed the weekend market, several restaurants, especially Aqaba, and just strolling down the lively main street Antonio Gramsci, where we enjoyed stopping for espresso and people watching. There are also a lot of town festivals and concerts in the summer months.

If you want to see Tuscany by either train or car, I would very highly recommend staying at Villa Paradisino. Its central location is ideal for travel, it’s so much more unique and personal than any hotel I have ever stayed at (including 5-star rated hotels), and the rates are very affordable. And, if you prefer to just relax, not venture too far, and just enjoy the breathtakingly beautiful buildings, gardens, great food, and the phenomenal personalized attention to hospitality, Villa Paradisino is for you.

  • Stayed October 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nashville, Tennessee
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 11, 2009

I figure I’m the typical American who has watched all the Italian movies, read the novels set in the lush countryside, and romanticized about taking my first trip to Italy and how it might just knock my whole worldview upside down. Now in my mid 40s and in the middle of major life changes, I decided it was time to make the trip and open myself up to all the experiences that awaited. Then I had to work on bringing it all down a few notches because I knew nothing could live up to the expectations that had built up.

On that last note, I was wrong.

One of my girlfriends and signed up for a Walking and Cooking tour of Tuscany and to our delight it all centered around Villa Il Paradisino. It was actually beyond anything we could have dreamed up. And our skills of dreaming things up are pretty well honed, I might add.

First of all, our room was exquisite. Both rooms, actually, because we ended up staying an extra two days to just hang out, so we were moved to another room that was available. They were both decorated with so much care, filled with antiques and special touches like fresh flowers on the nightstand. The beds were perfect, the sheets yummy, the bathrooms were spacious and the towels smelled like lavender. I had a chance to see some of the other apartments and each one had its own charming character. As a matter of fact, I wanted to spend the rest of my life in every one of them.

The first morning one of the staff members let us know it was time for breakfast and we were escorted into the main house to a table filled with breads and jams and cheese and fresh fruit, along with a charming English businessman who was a regular guest there. That was when we first met Costanza, the most delightful spirit I think I’ve ever come across. The villa has been in her family for three generations, and she’s the one in charge of its new life as a haven for tourists and guests. She introduced herself, asked what we’d like for breakfast (because apparently the feast on the table wasn’t enough), cooked up scrambled eggs that I’m still trying to duplicate (a little secret is the nutmeg), and then brought out a list of appetizers, first courses, second courses and desserts for us to choose from for our upcoming cooking lessons. And let me just say, I know foodies and am one myself – but I’ve never met anyone who loves food and tastes and the art of cooking the way Costanza does. It’s infectious, and simply listening to her describe a food or a taste is a large part of the experience. She brings a passion to food that comes through in her face and voice and hands that are constantly in motion.

My friend and I spent the following three evenings—for about 4 hours each lesson—in the kitchen laughing and cooking and smelling wonderful dishes that had been perfected in Costanza’s family for a couple of generations. Her mother and adorable sister, Serena (and Serena’s dog Lalu) were in and out, helping, setting the table and just being a part of it all. Around 9 p.m. each evening we enjoyed the fruits of our labor, right there in the family dining room with a fire going, the family’s wine, and guests that included our English friend and his Italian girlfriend one night; a lovely neighbor who oversees a college program there another night; and a family from Sweden who had been there all week with us, as well as four new guests who had just arrived hours before. Even after years of movies and books and photos, I could not have dreamed this up.

All of this to say, my week at Villa Il Paradisino ranks right up there as one of the greatest experiences of my life. If there were more than five stars available I’d give all of them and more. Costanza could host a seminar for Ritz Carlton on customer service; I don’t know when she had time to sleep, being completely attentive to every need her guests had. From cooking breakfast to helping with directions to making reservations to driving us to the train station and getting our confused American overpacked selves on a train. We were able to walk to the train station and be in Florence in a matter of minutes; wander around the sweet town of Sesta Fiorentino and feel a little like Norm from “Cheers” when we walked into the local café for coffee … then a snack … then wine; sit and watch the sunset over the gardens; or help out with the olive-picking one gorgeous afternoon. We were able to travel to another country for the first time and, instead of feeling like a tourist, feeling like we were part of a family there. And that’s the perfect Tuscan experience, compliments of Costanza and Villa Il Paradisino. It can refuel your engine and add a few new colors to your world. I can hardly wait to go back.

  • Stayed October 2009, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Plymouth, MA
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 26, 2009

Costanza is great hosts and provides hospitality beyond what you would expect . We were treated as if we were family. She provides a welcome atmosphere among this historic and elegant rural oais within an urban setting. As soon as you enter this family home you feel the love of the land and the estate that the desendants have perserved and cherished and are willing to share with travelers, It is a warm and inviting experience. The lovely breakfast served in the family dining room was incredible, our only regret of our trip to Italy was that we had not planned to stay long at the Villa Il Paradisino..

  • Stayed October 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ny
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 24, 2009

This is the first review that we ever wanted to write. We are a well traveled family of four. We are pretty laid back, but have high expectations for our vacations. We personally rely on other peoples reviews before ever booking; so we want to give you an unbiased view of what we considered an amazing property. First of all...being greated by the owner, Costanza we immediately feel like we are being greated by an old friend. The surroundings are absolutely breath taking...from the endless gardens filled with every imaginable herb, vegetable & flower to the olive, lemon, apple, pear, & melograno trees. Now the tricky part for me when I check out apartments/hotels, what does it really look like inside? The photo's usually look better than the real thing, right? Well, this is one where it's actually nicer in person.The apartment we rented (Melagrano) was ideal. The rooms were decorated with authentic furnishings that were handed down through generations in her family. May sound too precious, but it was so cozy! Knowing we were traveling with our 4 year old and 10 month old, they did those little things...like setting up the apartment with a high chair and crib without us ever asking. The linens, towels and robes were all of high quality like you'd find at a 5 star hotel. I think there are 5 apartments in all, we were able to check out 4 of them...you will not be disappointed by any of the apartments.
Costanza also provides cooking classes of which I was eager to take. I'm a food network junkie and love to dabble in cooking. We (me and my 4 year old) picked the herbs and veggies from her garden. This is a huge treat for a city kid who thinks vegetables grow in the supermarket. We made an amazing 5 course meal that we later enjoyed with my family. I would recommend to either take the cooking class or if you just feel like chillin out....have her cook while you get to relax and enjoy her family recipes.
I also want to point out that we were able to take a five minute walk into town, which was a nice size....had a couple of good restaurants, gelateria's, farmers market, etc. We were nervous there wouldn't be enough to do in this small town without a car, but we seemed to occupy our time just wandering around the property and taking short walks into town. If that sounds to low key, you can also hop on a train that puts you into the city of Florence in just minutes.
We absolutely give Villa Il Paradisino our highest rating. Why stay in an impersonal hotel when you can stay in a great location like this, that will stick in your memory long after you are gone. This is definely the way to go....whether you are a family like us, traveling with friends....or a couple looking for a romantic hideaway we would recommend this place without reservation.
Ciao!

  • Stayed October 2009, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Villa Il Paradisino

Address: Via Cafiero, 57 | Colonnata, 50019 Sesto Fiorentino, Italy
Location: Italy > Tuscany > Province of Florence > Sesto Fiorentino
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 4 Specialty Lodging in Sesto Fiorentino
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 9
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
We’ll welcome you to apartments with precious antique furniture, framed by a property with splendid flowers, vegetable gardens, aromatic herbs and century-old trees. You’ll taste our Tuscan recipes in a place that is rich with history: a renaissance villa, our family home since 1830. We invite you for an authentic opportunity to experience art, nature and gastronomy. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Villa Il Paradisino Province Of Florence/Sesto Fiorentino, Italy

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