I have always wanted my mom to experience Europe. She is now 66 and in good health and retired and why not? I knew she would love Italy but I know my mom is not a city person, so I began my research. I looked up the UNESCO World Heritage sites and learned about Pienza and the Val d'Orcia. I'd never heard of either, so I was intrigued. The other thing I had to consider was my dad would also be coming. He and my mom are different travelers. She's more laid back and he can get restless. After more research, I came to find out about this wonderful agriturismo. I thought it would be the perfect place but I first contacted Isabella Moricciani who reassured me that the agriturismo would be a great place to either relax and watch the clouds go by or be as engaged in as many activities as we wanted to be. She was completely right, of course. When we first drove up to the property, we were greeted by Carlotta, Isabella's "guardian angel." She showed us to our rooms (L'Ovile and Il Granaio) and then Luciano came by and gave us fresh eggs and fresh ricotta. We also had pasta in the kitchen and a complimentary bottle of wine and olive oil. We were set! We were there for a week and I have to say, I hit it out of the ballpark when I chose Cretaiole. My parents could not have had a better time - socializing and dining with the other guests and with the amazing Moricciani family and the amazing and tireless Carlotta! The setting is gorgeous. I can't put it into words. I was shocked at how gorgeous green grassy hills could be...I've never seen anything like it. The winds made the grass move like waves - it was a sight to enjoy. The birds were different. The air was different. The clouds were different. I loved it there and I'm forever thankful to the Moricciani's hospitality. I had heard about Isabella's famous book chock full of activities and because of it, I did something I never do - zero research other than knowing how to get to the agriturismo. On Sunday, Isabella & Carlotta came to the agriturismo at 9am and discussed the weeks' schedule of activities and tried to get a head count on who and how many would like to participate in the activities. Therefore, I'm glad I didn't do any research as Isabella had already put together so many wonderfully intriguing activities and if you go with something in mind that isn't in her guide, feel free to ask about it and she'll help you get reservations or whatever you need. As far as activities go, we went to see the Romitorio (Estruscan tombs) which was a gorgeous way to get to see Pienza for the first time as well as the enchanting Pieve di Corsignano. We also went to the Moricciani family farm which was delightful even though it was raining on the day we went. I think this activity began at 10:30 or so and we ended up eating prosciutto and pecorino and drinking wine...it was amazing. My partner went on the photo safari and even though it was a foggy morning, she got some fantastic photos. We did the pici pasta making dining extravaganza - we all loved it. I went to various towns around...Montepulciano, Montalcino, Monticchielo, Bagno di Vignoni, Castelnuove dell'Abate, Abazzia d' Sant'Antimo. We did a tour of Siena. It was all fantastic. After the week at the agriturismo, we went to Elba (gorgeous) and then to Florence. However, no vacation I've ever gone on has matched this week at the Agriturismo Cretaiole. I will always cherish this time.
- 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