We stayed as a family (4 adults, 2 seniors & 2 boomers + larger dog) at Villa la Massa in September as part of the "The Romantic Journey Through Italy Package". The package included 3 nights at Villa d'Este & 3 nights at Villa la Massa (we extended to 4 and upgraded to Junior Suites). Sumptuous full buffet breakfasts, 3 course dinners as well as other amenities were included making the package enticing for the price. We couldn't have been more pleased! The hotel is a lovingly modernized old estate, located on the Arno River with spacious grounds for jogging, getting air or simply walking our dog as we did. Away from the bustle of Florence, one can take a nice drink and snack on the terrace overlooking the river or go for a swim in the inviting pool. (Our stay was rather late in the season making swimming not an option for us this trip. But we did unwind in the garden and soak up the wonderful sun.) What a great way to relax and chat and catch up after a day of sight-seeing! The hotel offers a complimentary shuttle service to the city & back every hour: most practical. Plus, the attentive and friendly staff (notably Tamara & Ruth) were great help in suggesting and arranging activities for us. We opted for: 1) a 3 hour guided walking tour of Florence: an efficient & most informative way to get an overview of this incredible city 2) a mini-van with driver excursion through the Tuscan countryside to the Antinori Winery with tour & lunch/wine-tasting at the Badia a Passignano Restaurant (4+ hours) and 3) a visit to the Villa Gamberaia Gardens (very near the hotel). We can only heartily recommend all of these activities with the highlight for us being the tour/excursion to the Antinori Property with the lunch (Euro 150 pp). We got a lesson in Tuscan wines, wine-making, the Antinori history and tour of the cellars by a member of the family with a sumptuous multi-course lunch served in a private nook in the back of the restaurant. Wines accompanying each course were explained and served by efficient waiters...What a treat! Well worth the splurge we felt. (There is also a wine shop in the restaurant offering for sale a large selection of Antinori's Tuscan and international wines.) The hotel's restaurant Verrocchio was itself a pleasant surprise offering a lovely setting either inside or out on the terrace, excellent wait staff and truly fine local cuisine and wines. For the night we had 'free' we were given the recommendation of La Giostra in Florence. Yes, it was a bit touristy, but we we enjoyed the concierge's recommendation for the interesting Florentine dishes (and generous portions) and unique atmosphere including the restaurant's history. (If one has the pocketbook for it and wishes to really go all out, the 3 star Enoteca Pinchiorri requires a reservation made several weeks in advance.) We can only say great things about our memorable stay at this property, its staff and our activities. We highly recommend it as a base for a trip to Tuscany and Florence.