We stayed in Lavanda with our 2 and a half year old son in June 2017. The biggest compliment I can pay is that we never go back to places we have been on holiday, and this was our second stay at Caserma Carina. Once again the property was ideal for a holiday with a small child. There was plenty of outdoor space for him to run around, a gated pool and outdoor toys to play with. The apartment was spotless, well equipped and had beautiful views. It also had air conditioning which was very much appreciated during the heat wave! It is a very peaceful and relaxing setting and some days we had the pool to ourselves. The nearby town of Mogliano is only a 5 minute drive away and has some great restaurants, and the region of Le Marche itself is beautiful. As with our previous visit, Dean and Lesley were excellent hosts and made us feel very welcome before we even arrived. I really cannot fault it at all and we are already discussing the possibility of a third visit!
We never ever tire of visiting Caserma Carina - this was our 11th year ! Although we only stayed a week this time it was brilliant to catch up with some old friends we've met here a few times before over the years as well as meeting some new guests on their first visit.
As always Dean and Lesley seem to attract a great mix of people which makes the holiday that much more enjoyable. Days round the pool ( when the heat is too much for trekking or driving) are always a brilliant mixture of fun , banter ( mainly from Dean) and simple relaxation with good food and wine - the latter thanks to Dean's on- site honesty bar. If you're really lucky you will be entertained by the real 'capa di capi' of Caserma Carina - the lovely Grace - during her school holidays.
The local restaurants are as good as ever and the prices are still very reasonable for a good evening out or a lazy lunch - we managed to take in La Perla in Mogliano itself a couple of times ( great value meat dishes) as well as Da Rosa in the local abbey grounds ( brilliant for pasta) and Agra Mater ( Colmurano)and Le Logge ( Urbisaglia) for something a bit different and special. Never disappointing !
Not to be missed is Dean's weekly wine tasting at La Murola vineyard - a fantastic and ( just about) memorable evening !
A regular feature over the last couple of years has been a visit ( accompanied by Dean and Grace for translation and haggling services !) to the local handbag factory where you can buy ( and we have !!) quality leather fashion bags at a fraction of shop prices - well worth a visit - just ask Dean !
Despite the earthquakes of last autumn /winter - Caserma Carina's grounds and apartments remain untouched and are as pristine as ever - thanks to the daily hard work Lesley and Dean put in to ensuring that guests have a brilliant and memorable holiday.
No doubt - we'll be back !
Quite how the region of Marche has slipped under the typical holiday radar is something of a mystery; rolling hills, friendly locals, traditional food and wine at non-tourst prices..... Well actually, those of us in the know should keep it a secret.....
However, what we must share is the welcome and hosipitality of our fantastic hosts at Caserma Carina, Lesley, Dean and daughter Grace, who made this a frankly unique experience! Fun, caring, helpful and incredibly generous with their time and advice yet at no time intrusive; an evening on the terrace with them and other guests will be remembered a long time once it all comes back to me!
Everything about the house, garden and pool exhibited the care and attention that is required to keep guests absolutely happy; of all our fellow travellers, we were the only newbies and I think that tells it's own tale, so do take your early morning flight to Ancona, and get poolside whilst the sun is still up in the sky, popping in to the honesty cellar en route to make the first sunbathe truly memorable.
Mogliano and its environs have their own attractions, including hilltop restaurants serving high quality home-cooked food; and Assisi is a little over an hour away - a highight for us. We will also want to be back during the opera festival at Macerata in late July.....and even the coast is less than an hour's drive away. But if lazy days are your thing, get in the lush garden of Caserna Carina, foat in the pool, slope off for an equally lazy lunch and then come back for more of the same, Avoid Dean's jokes (but do take his fabulous wine tour) and enjoy Grace's mysterious enjoyment at having strangers around her house all summer and beyond! And Lesley loves speedos!
I always used to say I'd never go to the same place twice, but Caserma Carina did for that!!
This was our 8th visit and Caserma Carina just keeps getting better.
2 weeks of sunshine, great surroundings, great food and drink and great company make for an amazing holiday.
Dean & Lesley work so hard to keep everything "just right" for their guests and are the perfect hosts with amazing local knowledge and recommendations.
If you're looking for an Italian escape with all the charm of Tuscany but without the coach loads of tourists and the inflated prices you should definitely try Caserma Carina, you won't be disappointed.
There are plenty of local restaurants, we seem to discover a new one every year. A must for all guests is a trip to the local vineyard, Cantina Murola for Dean's wine tasting evening. Great fun and great wine.
Another amazing holiday, can't wait for the next one!
We had a lovely stay in Caserma Carina. The drive to the house was very picturesque and then the beautiful gardens and vibrant flowers that came into view surrounding the house was just a picture!
We enjoyed the very relaxed feel of the place and the quiet setting. Some days we had the pool and gardens to ourselves which was simply wonderful, especially with our 16 month old running around. The apartment we had had everything we needed plus lots of children's toys and games. The kitchen was fully kitted out and we really liked that Dean and Lesley had a mobile baby chair which we took with us to restaurants, perfect for our daughter. The apartment was spotless when we arrived and very comfortable with lots of room and storage for our things.
The town is a short walk from Caserma Carina where we enjoyed the food at Marina's and La Perla, as well as the pizza places and the gelato from Zanzibar.
Both Dean and Lesley were very welcoming indeed, lovely hosts who let you get on with it but are there if you need them and are very knowledgeable of the area. The great care and effort they have put into the house and gardens is amazing. The secluded patio at the end of the pool with views of the hills and sunflowers, perfect place for an evening meal and glass of wine or watching the sun set. The pool toys and sun beds. There are lovely touches here and there that made our stay with our toddler even better.
We thoroughly enjoyed our stay at Caserma Carina and would recommend to others who are looking for a very chilled out, relaxed place to unwind. We didn't venture out very far for a few days because we liked the apartment, pool and gardens so much. We loved that it was very child friendly. Perfect place for some family time.
We loved Marley too!
We have returned to Caserma Carena after a break of a couple of years and it's just as perfect,
Very beautiful ,
Great hosts , lovely area , couldn't get any better .
Caserma Carina nestles in a wonderful location. This was our third visit and we were thrilled to be reunited with the spectacular view. There to meet us were Dean, Lesley and Grace. Their welcome was so warm and hospitable. They have done a marvellous and sensitive job in restoring their property and in providing lovely, comfortable accommodation. The garden and pool area are really attractive and tended to meticulously by Dean and Lesley. They are up early every morning to prepare the garden for their guests. Loungers are cleaned and cushions are installed on them, plants and lawns are watered, the pool is cleaned and checked and parasols are made available. Any question you may have is answered helpfully by Dean and Lesley and they are a mine of useful advice and information about the local area, visits that can be made and restaurants to be enjoyed. They will book tables for you and arrange taxis. The whole set up is beautifully organised in such a way that you can't help but relax and enjoy your holiday. Caserma Carina suits us perfectly.