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“Gorgeous Place - if you are prepared” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Le Capanne

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Le Capanne
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3.0 of 5 Small Hotel   |   Loc Le Capanne, 56017 San Giuliano Terme, Italy   |  
Hotel amenities
Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
46 helpful votes 46 helpful votes
“Gorgeous Place - if you are prepared”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 29, 2010

We stayed here for 4 nights for a family wedding, with about 20 members of family. And we will be back.

The place is difficult to find, and the road up the mountain side from the little road below is terrifying, but it is so worth it when you get up there. This was obviously once a house with lots of different out-buildings which have been converted. We stayed in room 23, which is a one bed apartment with a huge kingsize bed, and 2 zed beds in the lounge/kitchen area for our 2 kids. This was west facing looking out over absolutely spectacular scenary and sunsets. Sadly our terrace faced the other way into the side of the mountain.

The room had very basic/rustic italian decor, it did feel a little damp, and not everything worked perfectly. Showers only, no baths. No maid service or cleaning at all in the time we were there. The rooms are not deluxe accomodation in anyway, but there is something about the place which meant it really didn't matter to us, as we spent very little time in the room. We were not phased by the faults - which is unusual for us, as we are quite picky and we love deluxe things.

There are beautiful flowers and pots and plants everywhere you look, and they have tried very hard to make it very romantic. There are also lots of different bricks and styles of building which work beautifully with the plants and trees, it is a feast for the eyes.

The pool area was clean, had plenty of sunchairs (only 5 actual sunbeds, but about 20 deck chairs) and the pool itself was a really nice size. The view from the pool is breathtaking, and we were treated everyday to the awesome sight of paragliders coming down the mountain above us and below us. The pool is quite deep, kids who cant swim need armbands at all times.

Food: we were disappointed by the breakfast which was not nice, they charge 10 euro for it and its a cup of coffee or choc from a machine, a warm sweet croissant (literally one - as they deliver them to your table), dry bread and jams. There was also coco pops and orange squash. Dinner however is a totally different thing, they are brilliant at their dinners here. The pasta was fantastic, the grilled meats were amazing and we loved the salads. The house wine was also great. We paid about 80 euro for dinner for 4 including wine and it was well worth it. They do not do any lunch service which was a real shame.

Tips for making the most of this place:

Bring candles for the evening
Bring plug-in mossie killer
On the way in to the resort, go to the Carrefour or BANCO supermarket and stock up on lots of things for breakfast, lunch and snacks/drinks during the day
Bring a portable DVD player with a SCART socket/plug so you can avoid the TV
Bring music

This place was fab and we will likely go again, as without all the distractions of modern life, we spent very good quality family time at this place.

  • Stayed June 2010, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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78 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
Aberdeen, United Kingdom
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 22, 2010

Myself, wife and little child have been spending 5 nights in Le Capanne. The residence is on a mountain side, which provide a stunning view over the city of Pisa and surroundings. However, the place is remote: 10 mins (of hairpin curves) by car from San Giuliano Terme, which in turn is 15 mins from Pisa. This would not be a problem if Le Capanne would provide the services you need... but these are the facts:

- breakfast is (extra and) served from 8 to 9.30 am; miss it (I'm on holidays, right? can I sleep a bit longer?) and nothing else, not even coffee or tea, will be available until lunchtime. If by lunchtime there's another reception going on (it happened twice during our 5 days stay), the kitchen won't be available for you. They were kind enough to provide us with a sandwich though. Dinners: we didn't even try.
- no kettle/tea/coffee facility in the rooms. We couldn't get boiled water for preparing formula milk for the baby. Not even after asking: "We don't provide this service" is the sentence you'll be likely to hear each time from your host.
- the maids cleaning the rooms knock on your door at 8.30 am (clearly you should be at breakfast by then).
- cleaning the room, however, is just about resetting your bed and delivering extra towels and toilet paper. After 5 days we had many towels, and all wet since there's nowhere in the room where to hang them to dry. The bin was not emptied, not even once in 5 days, we had to do it. The room has never been vacuum cleaned.
- we were in Le Capanne for a wedding on the coming weekend (the reception was in Le Capanne itself), so we asked for an iron and a board: "We don't provide this service" is the sentence you'll be likely to hear each time from your host (did I already mention it?).
- forget any room service, laundry, soap in your room...
- the rooms are poorly insulated: you can ear people from the other rooms and from the staircase.

Hence, the place is good if you just need to sleep, have a swim in their (unheated) pool and stare at the countryside. Unless you want to diet, get an apartment (more expensive than rooms) since it features a basic kitchenette, so you can buy food in the supermarkets in town and prepare it yourself. For the rest, you'll be spending your days out visiting places. If you look for a place where to be pampered instead, simply forget it: they don't provide this service.

  • Stayed June 2010, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Stavanger
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 6, 2010

We enjoyed four nights in this hillside charm. However, our stay was not "hassle free". Upon arrival there was some trouble with our (prepaid!) booking, so we were offered a smaller room than we expected. The pool and pool area is very nice - with a spectacular hillside view. At dinner time it turned out that our table reservation had not been registered. You might want to do an extra check on this, since the drive to the nearest restaurant is more than 20 minutes on an unlit and winding road. We were offered to wait, and after 90 minutes we got a table (at that point our kids were nearly falling asleep). The wait was worth it (at least for the grownups). The food was excellent, and one of the best meals on our trip.
During high season this place is booked for weddings in the weekends. An Italian wedding is more or less a full day event... The restaurant is then closed (so you have to either stay at the pool, in your room or take the winding road down the hill). We really missed having a poolside bar or a small market up on the hill. So with two kids we had to plan ahead what to bring with us back up to the hotel.

  • Stayed July 2009, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oslo, Norway
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
19 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
119 helpful votes 119 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 22, 2009

Stayed there 3 nights in July '09. Really special. You will have problems findng this hotel, even with a TomTom! And that's part of what makes it so cool! After we drove back and forth in the nearest small town ,San Giuliano Terme, we did spot the sign for the hotel. The drive up is spectacular, with such a bending road that you'll have to use your cars horn before every turn. And I'm from Norway, so quite used to "bending roads", but only seen something like this once before.
Shortly, this is a 3-4 star on the outside (pool, restaurant, etc.) with 2 star rooms.
Which by easy kalculationn adds up to a 4 stars, right!?! The place is just special; you'll have a breathtaking wiev (remember, I'm Norwegin, so I'll know..Fjords, right?). You can see for miles, and easily spot that strange tower leaning to one or two sides.. If you want a quiet, relaxing, "read-a-book-with-a-vew" kind of hotel, THIS IS IT!
We have a daughter (11) and a son (10), and they both really loved this place! Especially the pool and also the outside aria where we played a lot of football.
NOTE; The restaurant is only open for dinner on wed.- to saturdays (?).
NOTE 2: Our friends; a couple with children of the same age, came 2 weeks later.. and left after 1 night for a more comfortable hotel... If you want truly 3-4-5 star "luxury", this isn't it.
But we normally stays at 4-5 stars, and all of us really wants to come back!

  • Stayed July 2009, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Berkshire England
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 11, 2009

We went with much trepidation after reading the reviews on this site expecting broken toilet seats etc!
As everyone says the loaction cannot be beaten, you could see the leaning tower of Pisa in the distancefrom the pool. The drive up hill was fine, not as bad as I expected, (allow a 7 min drive from village, and follow signs for Agriturisimo Le Capannne, ask for directions at information centre in village,on first floor, as the girl speaks perfect English and is very helpful).
Our two large rooms made an apartment, with 2 bathrooms, both extremely clean, intact toilet seats, and fantastic water pressure in one shower (not the other)
Rooms could do with a bit of updating - (broken lamps and horrible cheap pictures on walls etc - then it would be fantastic.
The kitchenette was more than I expected - a little odd that the hob and sink was housed in a cupbaord but the doors closed and kept everything neat. Each apartment had an outside terrace and table lots of people bought food and ate outside and the atmosphere was relaxed and friendly.
The chef is also the owner, very nice, but his miserable wife lets the place down.
We had AC the first day, but on the second it was turned off. When we enquired at reception she told us it was not included in the price! We told her we'd had it the first day and her husband had showed us how it worked etc. Then she changed her story (via one of the waitresses) and said that the apartment next door had complained as the unit was noisy on their roof. It was indeed on their roof, and I suspect very noisy.
Within 30 mins some maintainence guys came, fixed the noise, and we had A/C once more. My husband was less impressed by this place than I (said the staff made it a bit Faulty Towers like!
American 5 star luxury this is not, but rustic Italian it is - and that's what I wanted.
It's not perfect, but if it was it would be too expensive probably!
I've never been to a nicer pool, clean with breathtaking veiws, never too busy, always an available seat, (no need to put towels on beds!) The waterfall into the pool was great fun for the kids.
The restaurant was fantastic - one of the nicest meals we had in Italy, with the best views but you need to book and it was closed on Wednesday.
Looking at all the other hotels nearby I reckon this is the best of the bunch and gave us good value for money

  • Stayed July 2009, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
Glasgow
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed June 18, 2009

San Guillano is a beautiful town. Worth visiting especially since it is only 1 eur on the train from Pisa! However do not stay in one of the villas near the Hotel Capanne. It was disgusting. Damp walls, broken toilet seat tiny shower and ants everywhere! We ended up leaving after a few hours and ended up haveing a brilliant holiday! Visiting pisa florence and rome! I would really suggest that you avoid this apartment.

  • Stayed June 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
UK
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 7, 2009

Le Capanne is in a fantastic location. As everyone else says, the road up there is a little tricky to find, and quite narrow, but its fine. I think one of the main 'problems' we had was that we were sold this as a hotel by Expedia, and after the first day we found out that the rooms aren't serviced or cleaned at all, and we were there a week. The rooms are very basic, and the "satellite tv" is dire. However the rooms are clean and reasonable for the price you pay. We only ate at the restaurant once, which was nice but not very cheap if you want to eat there every night. Consequently the kitchenette in the room is very useful for money saving.
Overall, Le Capanne is beautiful and rustic, but basic and not for everyone.

  • Stayed June 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Le Capanne

Address: Loc Le Capanne, 56017 San Giuliano Terme, Italy
Location: Italy > Tuscany > Province of Pisa > San Giuliano Terme
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #17 of 31 B&Bs / Inns in San Giuliano Terme
Hotel Class:3 star — Le Capanne 3*
Number of rooms: 34
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The locals call this "paradiso," and quite rightly so. The Residence Capanne is well worth the steep and winding climb for its spectacular, unbeatable views extending to Pisa. From the pool and flowered terraces, Pisa can clearly by seen in the middle of the plain below and it is just 4 km down to the little spa town of San Giuliano Terme. Restoration of this 17th C villa, and its cleverly converted five adjacent buildings, provide varied accommodation and the setting for a delightful restaurant. Stone steps link pathways and apartments to the main courtyard of the villa, with a parking area above. We are able to offer two self-catering apartments, both with a slightly different aspect. Simply furnished, they are equipped with kitchenettes designed for only light holiday cooking, to encourage guests to take full advance of the restaurant. When this is closed, a pizzeria opens in the courtyard below. Apart from the obvious attraction of the Leaning Tower of Pisa, it is also easy to make day trips to Lucca, Florence or Siena. The nearest good sandy beaches are to the found at Tirrenia, a short drive from Pisa. The splendid nature reserve of San Rossore, which stretches along the coast from Pisa to Livorno, is also well worth a visit-although check with the local tourist offices for opening times, which are restricted. Apt. Studio (2 people): ground floor living area with double bed, kitchen corner, bathroom with shower. Private equipped terrace with view. Apt. Bilocale (2+2 people): ground or first Floor living/dining room with kitchen corner (equipped with fridge, freezer, gas fires), double sofa bed, double bedroom, bathroom. Private and equipped area Apt. Trilocale (4+2 people): ground or first Floor living/dining room with kitchen corner (equipped with fridge, freezer, gas fires), double sofa bed, double bedroom, twin bedroom, bathroom. Private and equipped area 8 Dbl bedrooms with bathroom have been recently introduced on the second floor of the main building . All with TV Sat and Air Cond. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Le Capanne Hotel San Giuliano Terme
Le Capanne Province Of Pisa/San Giuliano Terme, Italy

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