This was our third visit to the wonderful Villa San Marco, this time with family that we don't get to spend much time with and it was the perfect setting for the grown up cousins to get to know each other again! Whilst we knew what to expect in terms of facilities, we were impressed with Andrew's new instructions on keeping the house cool, which were successfully adhered to - most useful, given the temperatures we experienced during the heatwave. The pool really was our sanctuary - and what a pool! So well maintained and managed by the visiting poolman and a luxury to spend time in! The hammocks in the shade of the oaks were a welcome refuge from the midday heat for some, whilst others preferred the sunny location of the larger hammock. The cinema room was fantastic - cinema quality sound and vision; the use of Netflix was a welcome update giving us more options.
Cornelia is so much more than the housekeeper and what she doesn't know about the area isn't worth knowing....she is also great company and we have enjoyed lively conversation and getting to know her during our visits.
Yet again, the salad and herb garden provided a bountiful harvest for us during our stay and was lovingly tended by Sabrina and her husband on their visits. During one of the driest periods in recent years, it was a delight to be able to enjoy the colours of the flowers, thanks to the ambitious automatic watering system in place. We were delighted to find the second almond tree this year, as well as enjoying the damsons at breakfast time.....
Unsurprisingly, we lived by the pool, enjoyed the games but the real treat was the bonding over the outdoor cooking well into the evening!
There is a wealth of fascinating places of interest in nearby Cortona - a 30 minute walk uphill for the energetic, or a 5 minute drive away......if you're able to tear yourself away from the villa!
We WILL be back - thank you so much for sharing your wonderful home!
Family with older children
| stayed in 8/2017
We had a wonderful time in your villa! It ticked every box and worked perfectly for all of the family (3 generations). We enjoyed it so much we struggled to go on some of our previously planned day trips! We all left feeling extremely happy and relaxed. Thank you for all of your care and attention throughout the booking process. All very much appreciated.
| stayed in 8/2017
This Villa is not only beautiful, in a great location but it also is equipped with all the modern facilities you would need. During this week, we barely left the villa, apart from to top up on the yummy wine and food from the near-by supermarkets.
Guests: 12 young professionals from the UK.
Villa Accommodation: all good size double bedrooms, decorated beautifully in line with the style of the villa. Several the rooms are en suite and a few share 2 separate showers rooms. There is a large kitchen with all the appliances that you could wish for (coffee machine, dishwashers, washing machine, ect…).
Facilities: HUGE pool perfect to cool down during the hot super months. Ideal for pool games (we played water-volley ball each afternoon). On top of this, there is a pool toilet and changing rooms along with a fully functioning kitchen in the Pool House, so you do not need to go back to the main house for. There are lots of sunbeds surrounding the pool, set in a large garden. The villa is set far from the road so you feel you have escaped from the world. What we really loved was the croquet lawn which is perfect for sundowners before dinner.
On top of this there is an outside dining area (seating +14people) that looks over the pool and surrounding area.
In the evening the outdoor Pizza Oven and separate BBQ was fantastic. We had pizza making competitions and long leisurely dinners. We only ventured to nearby Crotona for dinner one evening and it was lovely. There are lots of choices for dinner/ drinks in a picturesque setting.
Near-by activities: Tennis courts in Crotona, Pedalo & swimming at Lake Trasimeno there is a quaint island that you can peddle to that has several lovely little restaurants serving local food. (For those not inclined to exercise there is a regular ferry). Top of this there are many Golf courses, Vineyards and lovely local restaurants. We had a lovely lunch at Casa Mia, in Camucia, which served the local delicacy, Pici.
Overall we had a fantastic holiday and would jump at the opportunity to return! You can tell that the Owners love their home and really want their guests too as well. It is 5* accommodation!!!
| stayed in 6/2017
What a treat to stay in Andrew and Shan's beautiful Tuscan Villa. My only negative was that the week went too quickly but that is the sign of a truly great holiday.
The villa was stunning, spacious and immaculate both inside and out which is a reflection of the love and care that Andrew and Shan put into the property.
Whether you want to kick back and relax or fill your day with activities, the villa and surrounding areas cater for all. We had fantastic days relaxing by the pool, indulging in long lunches and enjoying alfresco suppers (the wood-fired oven even inspired the less enthusiastic chefs in our group to test their pizza making skills!) Activities interspersed the day from early morning tennis at the Cortona Tennis Club (perched on the hill with beautiful views), followed by Gelato in Cortona, afternoon volleyball in the pool, golf, evening croquet and late night cards washed down with the finest Tuscan wine!
I highly recommend a trip to Lake Trasimeno and hiring a pedalo and heading for the island in the middle of the lake for lunch in one of the many shore-side restaurants. Having pedaloed back we then headed up to Castiglione del Lago which offers incredible views of the lake (and an opportunity to admire our pedalo efforts - as Lisa said there is also the option of a ferry if you don't fancy an hour on the pedalo!)
I often think that there is a risk of 'cabin fever' on villa holidays. Not here, I could have stayed for weeks.
Thank you Andrew and Shan!
The Villa was beautiful both inside and out, with amazingly decorated rooms in keeping with the grand and rustic Tuscan style. We had everything we needed and much, much more, enabling us to stay most evenings in the Villa, drinking red Tuscan wine by the pool and eating homemade pizzas (and thanks to the outdoor pizza oven, the cooking could all be done in the sun!). I stayed at the Villa with a group of 12 friends and it accommodated us perfectly with its spacious and airy rooms.
The Villa provided a lovely relaxing setting with views out across the farmland and over the olive orchard. It was a brilliant place to read by the pool and soak up some sun. The gardens are wonderfully kept with bright and lovely flowers and the pool was the prefect size and height for some epic volleyball matches! With the array of equipment available, we were also able to play a few rounds of croquet on the front lawn and some badminton over the pool.
The Villa is a walk away from the hill top village of Cortona, where you can wander down the cobbled streets with a tasty ice cream in hand browsing shop windows. Cortona also has well kept, clay tennis courts, which we all played on in the mornings before heading back to the Villa for a dip in the pool.
The pool house has all the facilities you need to cook and eat for at least 14 people, each day we would sit along the lovely wooden table that overlooks the pool and olive orchard for a tasty lunch.
I would definitely recommend a stay here, and cannot wait to return again myself!
Thanks Andrew and Shan!!!
What can I say, from the moment we pulled up we were blown away by the beauty and location of the place. Perfectly appointed and maintained, this magical villa has everything.
The main focal point for us was the swimming pool area where you'll find (unsurprisingly) a swimming pool which is the perfect size and depth for families with young ones as well as older groups who are partial to a cheeky game of water volleyball or 20. There is also a large al fresco dining area which can seat all guests but what really makes it stand out is the real wood burning BBQ and pizza oven. We had great fun making our own pizzas in this bad boy and it really made the holiday extra memorable for us.
We were even fortunate enough to meet the owners Sian and Andrew, who happened to be leaving as we arrived but hung around to greet us and give us some extra info and handy tips which were much appreciated.
The local towns Camucia and Cortona are beautiful and you won't struggle for things to do ot places to go out to eat and there is even a stunning lake (Tresemeno) just 15 mins drive away where you can hire a peddelo and ride over to the beautiful island in the middle of the lake for a glorious seafood lunch and an Aperol Spritz.
I hope to return next summer to what is now one of my favourite places.
| stayed in 6/2017
This is the third time we have been to San Marco and we can't begin to tell you what a fantastic time we have had in this beautiful home. It is honestly one of the most enjoyable and relaxing holidays we have ever had. The weather has been perfect - hot during the day and blissfully cool in the evenings and at night. The villa is incredibly comfortable with every last detail thought of. The pool house is a great meeting place for the whole family and the pizza oven tests everyone's cooking skills! Also there are interesting towns and vineyards within easy driving distance making this a fun holiday venue for all.
Family with young children
| stayed in 8/2016
Our second stay at Villa San Marco and this time we knew what to expect, in terms of facilities (luxury) and relaxation. We are all busy professionals who enjoy our working lives but prefer the downtime with our grown up children and friends and what a place to do this! We spent a fortnight last year and decided that a three week break (with a quick trip back to the UK via Rome for a wedding!) was the way ahead this year. Villa San Marco is the perfect setting to either spend the full duration, with all it has to offer, or as a base to explore some more of the historic local settings. We opted to enjoy the pool, cinema, table fussball, croquet and sunsets on the terrace, with incredible views of Cortona. As keen cooks, we LOVED the salad garden with a range of different tomatoes, herbs and salad and this year we found the almond trees(!) and were able to enjoy making salted caramel almond praline in the wood oven to add to our own gelato. The house is so beautifully decorated, with personal effects (we feel like we already know the owners, despite not having met them), able to play the grand piano and driving up the track to the house really felt like coming home! Our keen interest in cooking was more than satisfied by all of the local produce and the wood oven, which we used almost every night - also did a Tuscan cooking course while we were there...learned so much about my favourite hobby! It was great to see that some of the inflatables we bought last year were still there.....and having some very fit and young adults with us, we thoroughly enjoyed lilo races, as well as water volleyball. I know we will visit again!
| stayed in 7/2016
This is the second year that we have stayed at this Villa, with another family. The accommodation is five star with every amenity you could wish for. Rooms are large and comfy. the pool is a delight, but the star for us was the outside pizza oven which we used pretty much every night. The housekeeper was on hand when required, the pool cleaned regularly and Sabrina the cleaner was just fantastic. Enjoy the fresh tomatoes and herbs from the garden.. I was happy to chill for 3 weeks and ventured out only seldom - other''s were more adventurous and found transport links good - only 45 minutes from Perugia airport, and 10 minutes from Camucia railway station with high speed links. No hesitation at. All in recommending this villa highly.
Family with older children
| stayed in 7/2016
We have had a wonderful two weeks in this beautiful home. The house itself is really lovely and a credit to its owners. We loved the combination of beautifully decorated rooms with the benefit of every modern convenience - there is no detail or possible need which hasn't been considered! However, most of our time was spent at the pool area, again - the pool house kitchen is wonderfully equipped, so our cooking was all done there and our eating all al fresco. The pool itself is just lovely, large and inviting, with cleaning done discreetly on a regular basis. Carol looked after us so well on arrival, providing us with lots of useful information and the house book gave us lots of ideas for eating out both locally and further afield. Cortona is just lovely, with beautiful old, meandering streets. We went most days to have coffee or an evening meal. We also went to Siena, Florence (by train, thank you for the tip), Assisi (our favourite), Montepulciano (great wine tasting) and Perugia (great chocolate!!). We certainly hope to return to San Marco before long.
Family with older children
| stayed in 6/2016