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“Exceeded our expectations for a homebase in Tuscany” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Agriturismo Cretaiole di Luciano Moricciani

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Agriturismo Cretaiole di Luciano Moricciani
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via S. Gregorio 14, 53026 Pienza, Italy   |  
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Ranked #1 of 53 Specialty Lodging in Pienza
Farmington, New Mexico
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
“Exceeded our expectations for a homebase in Tuscany”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 23, 2012

We read about this agriturismo in Rick Steves' Italy 2011 and booked a week's stay for our group of four adults. The location was beautiful and our lodging-- La Casa del Contadina -- was spacious and well-appointed. It was, however, the well-organized hospitality that impressed us the most and allowed us to spend our time savoring the food and sights of the Val d'Orcia rather than problem-solving all those travel issues. Isabella's binders of suggestions for local driving trips, restaurants, scheduled tours, and other activities are an incomparable resource. With humor and a strong ability to read people, she helps her guests to quickly settle into their vacations by encouraging some basic plans to be made shortly after arriving. She encouraged us to ask her to make reservations for us at various sights and restaurants, "they know me!", and we did receive extra-special service (and some price discounts) at places that knew Isabella had sent us. If you stay here, I strongly recommend limiting your sight-seeing to places within a 30-45 minute drive. Spending time relaxing at Cretaiole is a delight and there is so much to see in the immediate area.

We especially enjoyed the following restaurants (we frequently coordinated our sight-seeing with lunch or dinner reservations):

Pienza: the best gelato is on the corner across from the small green park outside of the old part of town, such a kind man. The only all day restaurant we found in the region is La Buca di Enea and the hosts are very sweet, bringing complementary after-meal drinks (the bottles to pour for yourselves), tasty home cooking with good pici (the regional pasta).

Montepulciano: Osteria dell' Acquacheta, need reservations, their speciality is the the bistecca alla fiorentina and the owner is an entertaining character-- visibly wielding a huge cleaver in the back, bringing your raw cut to the table for your approval, and totaling up your bill on your table cover.

Monticchielo: Osteria La Porta, need reservations, absolutely amazing culinary creations with generous and attentive service. The most impressive, gourmet meal on our travels through Italy.

Trequanda: Il Conte Matto, wonderful food and an amazing view of the Crete Senese.

Sant' Angelo in Colle: Il Leccio, delicious, great service.

Montefollonico: 13 Gobbi, great food, enthusiastic host. Dessert was mediocre.

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled with friends
    • 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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284 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    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 (50)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
Portland, Oregon
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 14, 2012

My sister booked Agriturismo Cretaiole for a family holiday after reading about it in Trip Advisor. It is in an absolutely beautiful setting just outside Pienza, and the most relaxing vacation I have ever had! Isabella, Carlo and Luciano are all wonderful and very welcoming. Isabella has put together amazing books of things to do in the area, as well as having a weekly schedule of things you can sign up for and go see. It was great to have all the wonderful day trips already laid out so you could just follow her recommendations for visits to area towns, best places to shop, eat, etc... I would go back in a heartbeat!

Room Tip: All the rooms have kitchens where you can cook in if you are tired of touring about. The beds are r...
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • 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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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kings Park, New York
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 13, 2012

I had a wonderful time at Cretaiole. It has the most amazing view in the world and the greatest people in the world. The weekly activities are also a blast. Having pasta with everyone else after a great pasta making class, (It was delicious by the way) having dinner at a beautiful monastery, and visiting their ancient Etruscan tomb are just some of the things you can do there. Isabella provides all of these activities for you. She also has restaurant recommendations. (which are excellent) I can go on and on about how great Cretaiole is, but trust me, its better than you expect it to be. This trip will have a special place in my heart and I will always remember it! If you want a taste of the real Tuscan life, this is the place to be.

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with family
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Montreal, Canada
Senior Contributor
47 reviews 47 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 13, 2012

Visited Cretaiole in June for the second time in 2 years and somehow it's even better than before! The setting, the atmosphere, the attention to details that Isabelle and Carlo provide make all the difference. The sum of the parts really do add up to an outstanding and relaxing experience, with no pretentions. You really feel that you are at home in Tuscany, amongst family & friends, experiencing it in a way that will be simply unforgettable. The activities and sites that Isabella has researched (and provided to each guest in 2 large binders in each room) means you can set your own agenda for exploration, and see things from a local's perspective. A gem of a place in every way, where the heritage of the beautiful Val D'Orcia is ingrained.

Room Tip: Isabella will place you in the room appropriate to your needs.
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  • Stayed June 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jacksonville, Florida
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 12, 2012

Our family of 4 (2 adults and 2 children ages 6 and 8) from Florida stayed a week at Cretaiole after first finding in through Rick Steve's website. After spending a few very busy days in Rome, the relaxation of Cretaiole is just what the doctor ordered! Upon our arrival we were met by Carlo and Luciano, who just about bend over backwards to make sure your stay at Cretaiole is perfect! The level of service and interaction with the guests is spot-on. The apartments are Cretaiole are beautiful - we stayed in #2 - La Caciaia. As you stand on the grounds of Cretaiole and look out into the Val d'Orcia, every view is like a postcard. Our kids always had plenty to do - soccer, volleyball, see-saw, playing with the farm cats, and playing with the other children staying at Cretaiole. Isabella is amazing! She led us on an Etruscan ruins tour, made homemade picci pasta with the families, and was available to answer any questions, and suggest day trips to see the hill towns of the Val d'Orcia. Our family will NEVER forget our week at Cretaiole, and hopefully will be fortunate enough to spend another magical week there in the future! It was the perfect family vacation!!! Kudos to Cretaiole and all the people that make it such a special place!!!! :)

Room Tip: La Caciaia was perfect for our family of four...
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  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with family
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gladstone, Australia
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 10, 2012

Just driving to Cretaiole is amazing as it is set in the Val d'Orcia, a UNESCO world heritage site. So the views and landscapes are breathtaking. Upon arrival at this small slice of heaven we were greeted be Isabella, the knidest, most genuine lady with such a passion for this area and her guests. Then upon entering your very own little farmhouse apartment you are greeted with Olive oil and wine from the farm - along with a fruit basket, cereal, milk, to get you buy before you have to venture to the markets.
There is so much you can choose to do (which have all been tested by the moricciani family and in many cases are places the frequent), A guided tour to Siena, olive oil tasting, a pasta making class, tour of florence, natural springs to bath in (hot and cold), massage in the olive grove, tractor ride and meet the farm animals (was a real hit for my 3 year old son), hear gregorian chants, see incredible frescoes, have dinner at an ancient monastery, visit a terracotta museum and make some peices of art, you can do as much or as little as you like. Around the farmhouses are numerous chairs, hammocks as well as table tennis table, sand pit, slide, cubby house, volleyball net and grass to run around on, not to mention amazing views.
Cretaiole is a must for anyone wanting to get the most out of there tuscan experience. There is something to do and learn for all ages when we stayed ages were from 3 - 60+ and everyone had a fantastic time. Including the night visits by Luciano with a few special treats (what an amazingly beautiful, gentle hearted man he is)! Please do and enjoy, you will not regret it!

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled with family
    • 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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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Farmington, New Mexico
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 1, 2012

My 3 friends and I stayed at Cretaiole in La Casa del Contadino for a week in May. I cannot say enough about how wonderful our accommodations and our hosts were during our stay. First, our rooms in La Casa del Contadino were beautiful, clean, comfortable and well stocked. It has the comfort of being in a home while also being on vacation in one of the most beautiful areas of the world! La Casa del Contadino is a set of rooms that can hold up to 7 people located upstairs at Cretaiole. You enter first into the living area/dining/kitchen. Down the hallway to the right are the bedrooms and bathrooms which are laid out in a row along the left side of the hall: 1 bedroom, 1 bedroom with a 3/4 bath, 1 bedroom, and another 3/4 bath at the end of the hall, next to the last room. The beds were very comfortable, and each room had an incredibly picturesque view from its window. All bedrooms had either a closet or amoire and a dresser for ample clothing storage. Bathrooms were typically European with toilet, bidet, sink and shower. Make sure and bring your own soap, shampoo, etc. The kitchen has a beautiful stone sink, a stovetop, dishwasher and refrigerator, and all the dishes and cookware you need, including Italian stovetop coffeemakers (Mokas) - 2 large ones and 1 medium. It was such a luxury to be able to fix breakfast in the morning and dinner at night and eat only one meal out a day (there are amazing restaurants in the area, by the way! Don’t miss them!).

Isabella has organized a number of activities you can choose to participate in during the week. A few are included in your stay and others are extra. Our group participated in the farm tour, which includes the area next to the homes of Isa and Carlo and Carlo’s parents. The family cures meat, and makes cheese, olive oil and wine, and during the tour, you get to see all of this in action. It was an amazing way to understand both the local food and to better understand the tradition of only living off of what you grow. We also had the opportunity to purchase these items, which we used for our home-cooked meals during the week - yum!!

Our group also participated in the olive oil tasting. Carlo is a professional olive oil taster for the region, and he and Isa took the group through the ins and outs of how to find the best olive oil. We also got the chance to rate 4 different olive oils with the rating system that Carlo uses when he tastes professionally. It was fascinating to learn that the key components to good olive oil were not what I would’ve thought.

The whole Moricciani family is kind and hospitable and do an incredible amount of work to make your stay the best it can be. Isabella is an incredible organizer and is not only extremely helpful with any advice you may need or help with reservations, but she is also a very vibrant, intelligent, fun person to talk to. If you have the opportunity to learn some Italian, you won’t regret being able to visit with Carlo and Luciano (Carlo’s father and original founder of Cretaiole). Especially Luciano will give you plentiful opportunities to practice and it’s obvious he appreciates your language efforts, no matter how little you know!


All in all, an amazing experience. Tuscany and Val d’Orcia (the specific region where Cretaiole is located) were truly beautiful, peaceful and restful for the soul. If I were to return to anywhere in Italy, I would go there. I recommend that if you’re planning to be in the area, that you stay within the area, rather than using it as a place to day trip to larger cities, like Florence. It has many great things to offer!

NOTES on ATMs:
ATMs are tricky in this area. There are only a few and not all of them work. I was glad that I had been collecting cash at Deutsche Banks along the way before we arrived in Pienza. I arranged with my bank ahead of time for a larger than usual daily ATM withdrawal. Then, by using Deutsche Bank ATMs in Italy, I was able to withdraw 700 euros at a time, rather than the usual 200-250 at other banks. I highly recommend Deutsche Bank!

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled with friends
    • 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
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 Agriturismo Cretaiole di Luciano Moricciani

Address: via S. Gregorio 14, 53026 Pienza, Italy
Phone Number:
Location: Italy > Tuscany > Province of Siena > Pienza
Amenities:
Free Parking Kitchenette
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 53 Specialty Lodging in Pienza
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Agriturismo Cretaiole, a restored medieval Tuscan farmhouse, with panoramic vistas, has apartments to accommodate groups from 2-7 people. Come and embrace the enduring spirit of Tuscany! Weekly rates include authentic Italian experiences, such as a pasta-making class and Tuscan dinner. Located between Pienza and Montalcino, in the heart of the Val d'Orcia UNESCO World Heritage Site. Cretaiole is as delightful for adult travelers as it is for families. Assistance available in English, French, German. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Agriturismo Cretaiole Di Luciano Moricciani Hotel Pienza

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