I travelled with my two small children aged 4 and 3. Stayed 7 nights from end of August. All had a brilliant time including the experience of travelling by train from Pisa Airport to our hotel.
Saved a lot of money by booking the room/half board directly with the hotel and booking the flight separately.
Saved a further ~ GBP200 in total air fares by flying from Gatwick to Pisa instead of Florence Airport.
Saved a further ~ EUR140 by taking train/s (cost ~ EUR10 including my 4 yr old) from Pisa Airport to Sant Ellero train station then about 5 mins taxi ride from there to the hotel but you have to phone the hotel from the station to send you a taxi (as there were no taxis whatsoever there). Taxi fare from Pisa Airport to the hotel would have been around EUR 175!!!
Booked a classic room (#28); a nice corner room in the Villa itself with the two windows facing two different views on the 2nd floor and had classic furnishings, very clean, ceiling was amazing (with wooden beams). Bathroom was spacious, beautiful and very clean. View(s) from the Villa, in particular from the poolside anytime of day was breathtaking. Sunset was on the poolside. Everyone has access to that view; therefore no need to have an expensive room unless you are newly-weds! or you have money to burn!
Dinner (half board EUR25 per adult per night) was excellent because of the quality of the service and food; choice of two from each course was available which was always good. My kids loved the food and munched their way throughout the day to dessert. The restaurant manager and the chef were always helpful and flexible on what the kids could have. The Villa's own house red wine was lovely and very affordable.
Breakfast could disappoint some people as the only hot item on the cold buffet is boiled egg! but this was ok for us as there were different types of cereal and Itallian meats/cheese, cakes/pastries, yogurt fresh fruit etc.
Lunch menu had very limited choice but nonetheless all was tasty (pizza, lasagne, salad or toasted panini etc) and was served at the bar.
On the down side: bed was a bit on the hard side; walls could do with some touch up paint job, as some small bits around the edges of the bath/shower could do with resealing etc; TV was very small, very old and remote control did not work.
Main problem though was the atmosphere during quiet periods; during busy periods including weddings, the Villa buzzed with good vibes but when it is quiet it appeared a place without soul. Entertainment for kids was non-existent, so took my laptop & DVDs for evening entertainment as there were no facilities apart from the swimming pool and the 2km walk around the beautiful "Yellow Ring" which managed to do twice. Service at the bar can sometimes be slow but when you are on holiday ...I guess you just have to ...chill!
But all these really were minor issues.Really!
Conclusion: Villa Pitiana is a beautiful place suitable for most families except perhaps teenagers. You will have a brilliant time if you are easy going and do not concentrate too much on minor issues and also remembering that this is a 4* not 5* hotel. The staff were always professional and kids-friendly. (Tip well for extra special service).
I will definitely go back but will need to hire a car or increase my taxi budget to discover other villages/towns nearby.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Situated at 430m above sea level; surrounded by olive groves of Valdarno & centuries-old trees of the Vallombrosa. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Villa Pitiana Hotel Donnini
- Pitiana Hotel Donnini
- Villa Pitiana Donnini, Italy - Tuscany