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“Wonderful in every way”

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Agriturismo Pian di Meta Vecchia
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersBronze level
Ann Arbor, Michigan
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Wonderful in every way”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 1, 2013

We were on a four-day walking tour of the Val d'Orcia in Tuscany with three friends and were fortunate enough to stay at this beautiful, tastefully decorated agriturismo. Andrea and Elena were very friendly and helpful. The rooms were beautiful and the dinner and wine from their own vineyards were wonderful. We all wished we could have stayed here for all three nights, but the road called - but the same road can lead us back there and surely will. If you are in the area, stay at Pian di Meta Vecchia - you will love it.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
1 Thank Geraldine K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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99 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (4)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
Seoul, South Korea
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 15, 2013

I recently had the very good fortune to spend a week at Pian di Meta Vecchia. This farm is hidden in the middle of woods in the Orcia valley. Andrea, who runs the farm with his wife Elena, picked me up where the bus left me off: in the very beautiful town of Castiglion d’Orcia, a little wonderland of winding cobblestone streets, stone buildings, a square with a fountain, a museum, only open on weekend afternoons, unfortunately, and a church which was open and which turned out to contain a number of extremely interesting works of art. Add a pastry shop, an antique shop, and a couple of restaurants, and Castiglion d’Orcia would well merit a day’s visit.

Andrea’s car plunged into woods so thick I was expecting the farmhouse to be more or less buried in them; instead, the house sits on a kind of hill from which it surveys seemingly endless vistas of rolling hills and valleys, olive groves and vinyards, and not one but two castles. I was immediately treated to a tour of the grounds in the form of a hunt for wild asparagus in the company of one of the farm’s two cats; we emerged an hour later equipped with an impressive handful (for only a few of which I can claim credit) and an appetite sufficient for the risotto we were to make with them. Then it was back to the house for the first of many long chats with Andrea and Elena, charming, sophisticated and kind people who obviously love running their agriturismo.

This was the beginningof an enchanting week. Pian di Meta Vecchia is, for those who love long hikes, splendidly situated, and Andrea and Elena are extremely generous with their time, whether poring over maps and guidebooks in the evening or driving me and other guests to starting points for more far-flung hikes in the morning, or picking us up in the evening, or (most importantly) quietly slipping into our hands a package that turned out to contain a sandwich or a cake, lest hunger should strike on a long walk.

I have already mentioned the beauty of Castiglion d’Orcia; it forms a circle with the charming bath town of Bagno Vignone and San Quirico d’Orcia. A short but exciting walk north brings one to the 12th C. Romanesque monastery of Sant’Antimo where the monks sing all the offices and masses in a very simple, even austere, but pure and lovely Gregorian chant, and the neighboring town of Castelnuovo dell’Abate, with its own beautiful church. Twelve km to the west is the charming village of Sant’Angelo in Colle and twelve km to the north is the famous wine destination of Montalcino, also the home of a first-rate art musuem. But more lovely than any of these destinations are the paths that lead between them: tranquil paths winding through woods or groves, filled with the songs of birds, in which you are likely to see a hare or a deer suddenly leap across, and giving way regularly to breath-taking panoramic views.

For my fellow non-drivers: there are buses, although infrequent. It is thus possible, for example, to walk to Castelnuovo dell’Abate in the morning, enjoy a tour of the abbey, then take a bus to Montalcino, spend the day there exploring the museum and the wines and a good lunch, and then take the long, lovely hike back in the late afternoon. And, as I said, Andrea and Elena are extremely generous about driving guests to starting points in the morning or picking them up in the afternoon.

Andrea and Elena have gathered a small library of books relevant to the area: two of them quickly became my bibles for the week: a lavish guide to the art and architecture of the whole province of Siena, and a quirky and cultured companion to ten hiking trails in the immediate vicinity complete with maps so detailed that they mention every farm: highly useful when hiking in remote areas.

No matter how beautiful the day’s hike was, however, the best part was returning to Pian di Meta in the evening. On a typical evening I would return to the house to find a fire roaring in the living room and a cozy group gathered around it on the Indonesian carved-wooden benches with some sparkling white wine while enchanting fragrances drifted from the kitchen. Elena and Andrea spent years running a restaurant in Venice and are the dream conversation partners for anyone who loves cooking. My fellow guests this week were a charming Canadian couple with whom I compared notes on the hiking trails we had explored, and a young couple from Turin who ended up sharing their secrets for a perfect bagna cauda.

Now about the cooking. After months of travelling all over Italy I have had some extremely great dining, but absolutely nothing matches the superb quality, variety, generosity, and good taste of Andrea and Elena’s table. Here are a few of the things I enjoyed in the course of one week: lasagna stuffed with ricotta and fresh herbs; lasagna with cardoons; a risotto of asparagus; a risotto of artichokes; a huge platter of fish and seafood, fried and steamed; a rabbit wrapped in bacon and stuffed with nuts and sausage; a fish soup; an onion soup; chard sauteed with apples; carrots sauteed with fennel and balsamic vinegar; endive with cheese and walnuts; beef long braised with a sauce redolent of cardamom and fennel seeds and other herbs and spices; spaghetti with ricotta and tomatoes; a seafood salad fresh and with an abundance of herbs; a dense, chewy, spicy cake of nuts and fruits and chocolate—and these are only a few of the things that stand out from a week crowded with incredible meals, and all of the very highest quality. If you’re wondering about all that fish and seafood so far from the sea, Wednesdays and Fridays are the days when the fishmonger comes to Castiglion d’Orcia with a cart overflowing with the bounty of the sea; I accompanied Andrea on one of those days and it was an assortment that many beach residents would envy.

For breakfast there was a plum and walnut jam, a lemon marmalade, a fig jam, an apricot jam, and some amazing homemade croissants. But both at breakfast and dinner what almost stole the show was the bread which Elena bakes from her own natural sourdough: thick, chewy, crusty flavorful whole-wheat bread judiciously studded with pumpkin and sunflower seeds and varied by the addition of, now and then, some buckwheat flour or a bit of cornmeal. After weeks of white bread, this was too good to be true, and I savored every bite of it. It should go without saying that wine and the olive oil are also abundant and excellent.

The house itself has a modern, earthy tone, the walls covered in clay and the wooden beams painted white; solid handsome wooden tables and doors, and enormous windows that give on vast panoramic views of the surrounding countryside and admit vast amounts of glorious sunlight. There is good coffee and tea, there is always a platter of fresh fruit on hand, and the rooms and bathrooms are luxurious.

To sum up: a clean, comfortable, charming house; a ravishingly beautiful part of the world; a hiker’s paradise bedecked with castles and monasteries and fine art and good wine; excellent people and spectacular cuisine.

On my last morning Andrea took me on a walk through the woods which turned out to have a surprise destination: a cliff from which we had a breath-taking view of the Orcia river, winding emerald and turquois through the countryside far below. Then it was back into the woods for another surprise view: the house, this time from the other side of a wide pasture; it was as if I had never seen the house before. Then Elena drove me to Castiglion d’Orcia and stood with me as we waited for my bus to come. I didn’t want to leave this Paradise. As we stood talking about the various magic names that I had discovered over the course of the week: Ripa d’Orcia, San Quirico, Bagno Vignone, a guilty realisation stirred: I still had Elena’s book in my bag, the one filled with local hiking trails. I almost wished I hadn’t realised this: not because I wanted to steal the book, but because I would have liked an excuse to return. I may have one anyway: apparently Elena is planning to make a bergamot marmalade sometime soon…

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled solo
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Helpful?
1 Thank tainancastorp
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sezana, Slovenia
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 11, 2013

It's worth to drive a white road every single time to reach the lovely place, restored in an old and ecological style. When you arrive on a grass field and you see the house infront of you, you say: yes, that is the place. Not only for vacccation, but also for living. Isolated from daily traffic and completely stressless, with excelent base to visit history sites and famous wine cellars of Tuscany. Hospitality and readiness of Elena and Andrea to inform, advise and also arrange some visits at special wine cellars and food facilities around Tuscany is great. But great are also their lunches and dinners, prepared from food delivered from the local suppliers. Will come again. For sure.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank zoran p
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rotterdam, The Netherlands
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 26, 2012

Wonderful place, full of peace, where the stars shine and the wind carries away the thoughts…
The farmhouse is isolated but you can reach many magical places all around, the best of Tuscany!
The accommodation is perfect, natural style and impeccable in all respects. The food and the wines are delicious.
What else? I recommend this little piece of paradise to all who love nature and want to make a sustainable holiday, to all those who love to eat very very well.
What my concern, I hope to go back soon!!

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank Federica308
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Beirut, Lebanon
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 4, 2012

You don't expect a place to be as special as this is. A drive down a long wooded road lands you in a great open space surrounded mostly by a dense forest (with no electric lights) , and the hills of the Montepulciano countryside ,across the Orcia, on the other side. The night sky is amazing -as dazzling as any desert sky. At the center of this great landscape lies Elena and Andrea's farmhouse.Once inside,you are greeted by an unknown warmth that seems to be emanating from the place itself. Indeed, it turns out the heating system passes inside the interior clay walls and this novel warmth feels so inviting!You don't expect food to be such a series of pleasures, or the people offering you all this to be so at ease,so natural, or the room to have just that simplicity that lets you comfortably digest the delights of the day(the hotsprings,the walks,etc.).And then there's the silence!

  • Stayed November 2011, traveled solo
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Helpful?
Thank norma j
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 1, 2011

We were very lucky to spend 4 days at Pian di Meta Vecchia with a group of friends. It is a wonderfully renovated house in the most beautifully isolated valley where the daytime views are magnificent and the sky full of stars at night. The rooms are simply modern and calm and the house has an incredibly relaxing and relaxed atmosphere, The food and wine are excellent and if you only stay one night, dinner should not be missed. The most memorable things for us were the walk to San Antimo, the relaxed beauty of the house and the amazing food.

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
2 Thank Gillian S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Venice
Level Contributor
31 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 16, 2011

Pian di Meta Vecchia is a newly renovated farmhouse in the middle of a valley away from all noise and artificial light. During the day there are beautiful walks to do along the river or in the nearby woods, in the evening I loved to spot the skipping fawns in the clearing in front of the building or simply stare at the stars. Food and wine are excellent and original. We spoiled ourselves by having dinner served at candle light on the table outside our room (on the ground floor). A wonderful romantic weekend immersed in total peace and fresh air.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Fratami
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Agriturismo Pian di Meta Vecchia

Property: Agriturismo Pian di Meta Vecchia
Address: Localita Podere Pian di Meta 31 | Castiglion D'Orcia, 53023 Castiglione D'Orcia, Italy
Location: Italy > Tuscany > Province of Siena > Castiglione D'Orcia
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #6 of 34 Specialty Lodging in Castiglione D'Orcia
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Agriturismo Pian dui Meta Vecchia is located in the beautyful Val d'Orcia near the Orcia River in Tuscany with restaurant managed by Elena and Andrea, two chefs from Venezia. Wonderful panorama on the valley middle in the nature, very quite and lots of walks to do. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Agriturismo Pian Di Meta Vecchia Italy/Castiglione D'Orcia, Tuscany

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