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“Peaceful and friendly atmosphere.”

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Residence Santa Maria
Finland
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Peaceful and friendly atmosphere.”
Reviewed August 2, 2009

We stayed one week at Santa Maria in July 2009. The place was very peaceful. Staff was helpful and friendly. Garden is beautiful with lot of roses and a great pool (enough sunbeds!). The apartments were clean and with dishwasher. The nearest towns Montaione and San Miniato are sympathetic and Santa Maria is also close to San Gimignano, Florence and Siena. Also no more than one hour drive to the beach. The only thing we missed, was the air conditioning. Liisa from Finland

  • Stayed July 2009, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank lyyli
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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71 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (9)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
Wellington, New Zealand
Level Contributor
185 reviews
80 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 189 helpful votes
Reviewed February 4, 2009

We stayed at Santa Maria for a week, using it as a base to explore Tuscany. It was a rather ideal location as we managed to pretty much go to every town we planned. The apartment block was very carefully maintained. We stayed in the Bilo apartment - ample space, with a lounge and open plan kitchen, a bedroom and a bathroom, plus a balcony. The photos on their website are very similar to what the place looks in real life.

The owners are nice people. Stephanie has everything prepared - she has a good map where she circles out all the good restaurants close by. We ate out for 5 nights and self catered once. All the local restaurants were excellent - the best food I've had in Italy for sure, and really make us realise how much we love Italian food! A close by supermarket called Pam was also great - it is a proper supermarket and you pretty much will get everything you need from there.

One little thing, which was really really minor, was about making phone booking for the museums in Florence. There's a 4 euro booking fee per person which I was not aware. And to be honest if I knew it was that steep I wouldn't have asked Stephanie to make the phone booking. So do beware of extra charges.

  • Liked — Typical tuscany feel and surrounded by great restaurants
  • Disliked — nothing really
  • Stayed October 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank travelyun
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Antwerp - Belgium
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed September 1, 2008

After some searchwork on the internet for a holiday stay in Tuscany, we found the nice website of Residence Santa Maria in Alberi (Montaione).
We took contact via e-mail and immediately received all necessary information from Stefania, who runs the Residence.
The reservation went very smoothly. Quick replies and payment confirmation.
We booked our flights with Ryanair and rented a car (Fiat Punto)
with Hertz, all on-line via their websites.
We had no problems at all (no queing) when arriving at Pisa. Within half an hour we had our luggage and the car ready to drive to Montaione (Alberi), which is a 45 minutes drive from Pisa airport.
On arrival at Residence Santa Maria, Stefania welcomed
us, showed our appartment and gave a lot of practical information and tips (good restaurants / supermarkets / open markets / local events etc.)
We booked the Michelangelo appartment, which is a duplex with a nice kitchen, 2 (small) badrooms with a shower, 2 bedrooms each with a double bed, 3 terraces. This appartment is spacious enough for 4 persons, comfortable (sattelite tv / dishwasher) and very clean.
However, no air conditioning, which is a little bit a pity in the hot season (July / August).
There is safe parking space for the car.
During our stay the 10 appartments were fully occupied : Belgians, Dutch, Spanish, Italians, Germans, English.
Some couples, but most families with children.
But it remains a quiet residence where you can relax at the
beautiful swimming pool or enjoy the well kept garden.
There is garden furniture available for all guests at swimming pool.
Alberi (Montaione) is well located to visit the most interesting places in the north/middle of Tuscany. San Gimignano, Volterra, Firenze, Sienna, Pisa, Lucca, Certaldo, Pontedera (Vespa Museum), San Miniato, Colle di Val d'Elsa are all within 30 to 60 minutes' drive.
We would highly recommend Residence Santa Maria to families who want to combine a relaxing holiday at the poolside with visiting losts of beautiful places.
The only negative point in Tuscany are the very aggressive tiger mosquitos.

  • Stayed August 2008, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank peterannemie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kansas City, KS
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed September 9, 2007

Residence Santa Maria is a family-owned and run business. The staff is extremely friendly and will always do their best to make you feel at home. We were there on our honeymoon and Tuscany was one of our stops in our 2-week trip through central Italy. We stayed at Santa Maria for 3 nights and had no complaints. The place was clean, quite and peaceful. We rented a car in Florence and drove there; it took us about an hour and half to get there. It was at a close driving distance to other small Tuscany towns, ideal for sight-seeing. Next time we go to Tuscany, we will stay there again.

Stayed April 2006
Helpful?
Thank Gaby04
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Exeter, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
59 reviews
36 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
Reviewed May 10, 2007

We stayed for 3 nights in early May and I absolutely loved it. We took a cheap flight through Ryanair from East Midlands and collected our Hire Car no problem - do not book through Hertz as, like the other reviewer said, the queues were incredible but through Avis we had no problem. When we arrived it was raining and driving through the Tuscan countryside was just stunning - there are so many different wild flowers and everywhere you turned offered a different breathtaking view.
We found Santa Maria easily and first thoughts were fantastic - Laura met us and went through all the local attractions and Restaurants with us and could not have been more helpful. The Rooms were lovely - we booked a trilo deluxe and a bilo and the top floor of the trilo deluxe had 2 balconies to maximise the sunlight all day. Bathroom upstairs was very small but adequate. The only critism of the accommodation was the lack of a balcony from the main livning area, it would have been nice to have had breakfast outside.
The small complex was beautiful - lots of flowers and very peaceful, there are some improvements that could be made. There are some areas that needed tidying up, broken chairs and sunbeds left around the pool and some tools littered around. The Barbeque, which we used on our last night was in a terrible state and had obviously not been used since last year but when we asked to use it, they did attempt to clean it for us.
The local area is stunning, I can not put into words how wonderful it was. We ate at Restaurant Masi, which is in walking distance on the first night and, although the setting and building is beautiful, the meal was expensive and disappointing. Small portions and average quality. The following evening, we ate at another local restaurant by the lake and it was superb - the setting could be nice during the day when you could see the lake, but in the evening, you were unable to see anything. The ambiance of the restaurant is not as nice as Masi, the lights were too bright, but the quality of the food and the service was exceptional and it was much cheaper than the previous night.
There is one other bar/restaurant very close to the apartments, which Laura did not mention, and after calling in at 10pm on the first night to get a nightcap - I can understand why. They treated us like lepers, every drink I asked for, she said no - even red wine! DO NOT GO THERE!
Getting to Florence was an experience. We took the train from the nearest point and had to stand for 40 mins on a very warm train and to be honest the Italians are not courteous when in a rush - you have to hold your nerve and push your way through or you don't get anywhere. Florence is a beautiful city, but again it rained dramatically, which kind of spoiled it but you have to go to see the fantastic architecture and statues. It is expensive, but no more than you'd expect.
The following day was extremely hot and we stayed by the pool for a short while, but after the recent heavy rain - everything was a little dirty including the pool and surrounding area-my other half did go in, but it was freezing!
After asking Stefania to reserve wine tasting at Castle Oliveti, we went out for lunch, which is not as easy as it sounds. In the nearest town - Montaoine nothing much is open, especially on Mondays and we gave up an travelled further afield to get closer to the Vineyard. We amazingly stumbled upon Certaldo Alto, which is this small walled city in top of a hill. It was incredible and we had a lovely lunch of antipasta tuscano in a small cobbled street - the guide books vaguely mention this place, but you really must go!
The Vineyard was a castle, again on the top of a very steep hill - but again what a fabulous place! It was very cool in the courtyard and the smell of the lemon trees and sunshine was lovely. After a brief tour of the castle and cellars we tried the wines and olive oils. Again they had out on a small buffet of antipasto tuscano and the guide explained all about the wines that they made. To be honest - they were awful, but the setting more than made up for it. Wouldn't have missed it.
The final day, we went to the coastal town of Certiglioncello, which was very small and in need of some tlc, but it was a pleasant little spot for our final lunch.
All in all - Tuscany is heaven. I will go back again and soon, we all loved it.

  • Liked — The views
  • Disliked — nothing
  • Stayed May 2007, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank dippydired
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Launceston, UK
Level Contributor
263 reviews
70 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 109 helpful votes
Reviewed July 1, 2006

This was our first visit to Tuscany and the Santa Maria is ideally placed for sightseeing the beautiful tuscan scenery and major attractions of Florence and Siena. On a reasonably quiet road in the village of Alberi, the Santa Maria has 10 apartments within two 'pseudo' farmhouses. The rooms were clean and well furnished. Our only complaint - no kettle! The grounds were beautifully kept and the swimming pool very welcome (it was over 34 degress C every day we were there!). The hosts were marvellous - nothing was too much trouble. Overall we enjoyed our stay very much and would highly recommend this as place to stay for couples and families. If you do visit - avoid Pisa Airport - it is nothing short of a joke. Small and overcrowded, it took ages for the bags to arrive, ages to get through passport control and over 2 hours to secure a prebooked hire car. The people at the back of our queue are probably still waiting to be served!

  • Stayed June 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank cornwall-blue
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
UK
Level Contributor
25 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 69 helpful votes
Reviewed May 26, 2006

We love the Residence Santa Maria. First visited in 2002 and have returned twice since. This is saying something given the choice of wonderful places to stay in Tuscany. However, Santa Maria is family run and they cannot do enough for you to ensure you enjoy your time there. Rooms are tuscan style, clean and spacious. A beautiful pool area and gardens, barbeque and gardens, tranquil and relaxing. Just nearby is the town where there is a selection of restaurants and bars, shops and cafes in the day. There is also an amazing restaurant a short walk from the Residence - unfortunately I cannot remember the name but the Residence will be able to direct you. My friends and I had the most glorious meal sat at on outside veranda with the sounds of rural Italy surrounding us. A fantastic central location to get to Pisa, Florence, Siena, San Gimignano...wherever you wish! Car is recommended to get the most out of this area. Many of our friends have also visited Santa Maria on our recommendation and indeed are due to return this year and next. Highly recommended - go and enjoy!

  • Stayed June 2003
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Shezza77
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Residence Santa Maria

Property: Residence Santa Maria
Address: Via Alberi 74/80, 50050, Montaione, Italy
Location: Italy > Tuscany > Province of Florence > Montaione
Amenities:
Free Parking Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #24 of 45 Specialty Lodging in Montaione
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:1.5 star — Residence Santa Maria 1.5*
Number of rooms: 10
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Residence Santa Maria Montaione, Italy - Tuscany

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