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VILLA  AQUILEADWL Travel Exclusive

  • Sleeps 8 (possibile to add two extra single beds, write for details)
  • 4 double bedrooms
  • 3 bathrooms (2 ensuite)
  • Swimming pool
  • Near Lucca, northern Tuscany
  • Price: US$4,880 - $6,000/week (works out to about 64-80euros/night/person)
  • Detailed price/availability calendar, at bottom of this page

 

OVERVIEW
Just north of Lucca, explore Lucca, Florence, Pisa, the Cinque Terre, and the most beautiful countryside imaginable. Villa Aquilea was our first and original villa! An absolutely magical place, with a long happy history, it has hosted over 1,500 guests through the years.

LOCATION
The villa sits on a beautiful hill called Aquilea (pronounced “ah-kwee-LAY-ah”), just north of the walled-town of Lucca, Tuscany, with views of the countryside, the river, and Lucca in the distance. The villa is completely private but not isolated. It is near a small group of farmhouses, so you are likely to meet the neighbors, mostly local farmers, as they tend the land or gather water from the local spring. Almost all of them have strong and happy connections with the villa — half the village has an ancestor who was born in the villa or farmed its land. Many times guests have enjoyed being invited to tour the neighbors’ wine-making cantinas, have a coffee, or visit their rabbits and chickens. Some have even helped with the local grape or the olive harvests.

The village of Aquilea has a coffee bar and small grocery (1km) while other coffee shops, baker, butcher, restaurants, shops and a large grocery are in the bigger village near the river at the bottom of the hill (3.5km). The drive is very pretty, as the winding, paved road passes olive groves, farmhouses, vineyards and cypress trees. Lucca itself is 13 km (8 miles) from the villa.

From the villa, you can easily explore the Aquilea countryside, Lucca (20 minutes), the Garfagnana region (30 minutes), Pisa (45 minutes), Florence (75 minutes), the Cinque Terre (90 minutes) and many more attractions.

PROPERTY AND GROUNDS
The villa is located near the crest of a hill with 180 degree panoramic views that extend over the local village and farmsteads, across the plain of Lucca to the mountains beyond. It sits within a walled, landscaped garden with several terraces and vine-covered pergolas. A path leads to a secluded infinity pool with its own pergola and spectacular views of the countryside. Inside the villa, which is 500 years old, original features and local materials are combined with designer furniture and modern conveniences: chestnut beamed ceilings, Tuscan tiled floors, marble stairs, stone fireplaces, gas stove, Italian designed dining set.

Main Floor

  • Entrance via external double staircase.
  • Large dining and sitting room with sofa and armchairs arranged around a stone fireplace and a modern Italian-designed refectory-style table (seats 10) with matching buffet.
  • Library (English, German and Italian)
  • Spacious, well-equipped Tuscan style kitchen with chestnut table and chairs (seats 10), gas stove, extra wide oven, refrigerator, freezer, dishwasher and microwave
  • Outdoor dining terrace under wisteria-covered pergola with wooden table (seats 10) and breathtaking views across the countryside. Kitchen garden with benches, fruit trees and herbs (rosemary, thyme, mint, oregano, chili).
  • Double bedroom (queen size bed) with en-suite bathroom (shower).
  • Rear terrace with pizza oven
  • Grand marble staircase leading to upper floor.


Upper Floor

  • Spacious living/family room furnished with comfortable sofas, arm chairs, and tables. Study corner with desk. Extensive video library (English) and collection of games. Satellite TV
  • Rear terrace
  • Double room (queen size bed) with en-suite bathroom (bath)
  • Double bedroom (queen size bed)
  • Double room (queen size bed)
  • Bathroom (shower)
  • Washing machine

Pool area

  • Infinity pool (5x10 m)
  • Elevated grape-vine covered pergola with table and chairs
  • Modern Italian pool furniture (2 deck chairs, 2 lounge chairs, 2 coffee tables)
  • Terraced olive grove

OTHER DETAILS AND EXTRAS

  • Wi-Fi broadband internet access
  • Fully equipped kitchen, with dishwasher, microwave.
  • Laundry washer and dryer
  • Screens in all bedrooms/bathrooms
  • Ping-pong table
  • DVD/Video Player, Cassette/CD player


PRICES AND AVAILABILITY

Prices include rental of the entire property for up to 8 guests, fresh linens and towels, weekly cleaning and linen change (Saturdays).  Heating and telephone are metered separately.


 

2015 Calendar Weeks

 

Availability

Weekly price in US dollars (and estimate euros)

Dec 27 - Jan 3, 2015 Booked $4,880 (€3,610)
Jan 3 - Jan 10, 2015 Booked $4,880 (€3,610)
Jan 10 - Jan 17, 2015 Booked $4,880 (€3,610)
Jan 17 - Jan 24, 2015 Booked $4,880 (€3,610)
Jan 24 - Jan 31, 2015 Booked $4,880 (€3,610)
Jan 31 - Feb 7, 2015 Booked $4,880 (€3,610)
Feb 7 - Feb 14, 2015 Booked $4,880 (€3,610)
Feb 14 - Feb 21, 2015 Booked $4,880 (€3,610)
Feb 21 - Feb 28, 2015 Booked $4,880 (€3,610)
Feb 28 - Mar 7, 2015 Booked $4,880 (€3,610)
Mar 7 - Mar 14, 2015 Booked $4,880 (€3,610)
Mar 14 - Mar 21, 2015 Booked $4,880 (€3,610)
Mar 21 - Mar 28, 2015 Booked $4,880 (€3,610)
Mar 28 - Apr 4, 2015 Booked $4,880 (€3,610)
Apr 4 - Apr 11, 2015 Booked $4,880 (€3,610)
Apr 11 - Apr 18, 2015 Booked
$4,880 (€3,610)
Apr 18 - Apr 25, 2015 Booked
$4,880 (€3,610)
Apr 25 - May 2, 2015 Booked
$4,880 (€3,610)
May 2 - May 9, 2015 Available
$4,880 (€3,610)
May 9 - May 16, 2015 Available
$4,880 (€3,610)
May 16 - May 23, 2015 Available
$4,880 (€3,610)
May 23 - May 30, 2015 Booked
$4,880 (€3,610)
May 30 - June 6, 2015 Booked
$6,000 (€4,450)
June 6 - June 13, 2015 Available
$6,000 (€4,450)
June 13 - Jun 20, 2015 Available
$6,000 (€4,450)
June 20 - Jun 27, 2015 Booked
$6,000 (€4,450)
June 27 - July 4, 2015 Available
$6,000 (€4,450)
July 4 - July 11, 2015 Available
$6,000 (€4,450)
July 11 - July 18, 2015 Available
$6,000 (€4,450)
July 18 - July 25, 2015 Booked
$6,000 (€4,450)
July 25 - Aug 1, 2015 Booked
$6,000 (€4,450)
Aug 1 - Aug 8, 2015 Available
$6,000 (€4,450)
Aug 8 - Aug 15, 2015 Booked
$6,000 (€4,450)
Aug 15 - Aug 22, 2015 Booked
$6,000 (€4,450)
Aug 22 - Aug 29, 2015 Booked
$6,000 (€4,450)
Aug 29 - Sept 5, 2015 Booked
$6,000 (€4,450)
Sept 5 - Sept 12, 2015 Booked
$6,000 (€4,450)
Sep 12 - Sep 19, 2015 Booked
$6,000 (€4,450)
Sep 19 - Sep 26, 2015 Booked
$6,000 (€4,450)
Sep 26 - Oct 3, 2015 Booked
$6,000 (€4,450)
Oct 3 - Oct 10, 2015 Available
$4,880 (€3,610)
Oct 10 - Oct 17, 2015 Available
$4,880 (€3,610)
Oct 17 - Oct 24, 2015 Available
$4,880 (€3,610)
Oct 24 - Oct 31, 2015 Available
$4,880 (€3,610)
Oct 31 - Nov 7, 2015 Booked
$4,880 (€3,610)
Nov 7 - Nov 14, 2015 Booked
$4,880 (€3,610)
Nov 14 - Nov 21, 2015 Booked
$4,880 (€3,610)
Nov 21 - Nov 28, 2015 Booked
$4,880 (€3,610)
Nov 28 - Dec 5, 2015 Booked
$4,880 (€3,610)
Dec 5 - Dec 12, 2015 Booked
$4,880 (€3,610)
Dec 12 - Dec 19, 2015 Booked $4,880 (€3,610)
Dec 19 - Dec 26, 2015 Booked $4,880 (€3,610)

 

 

 

My husband and I wanted to do something special to celebrate our 20th anniversary. We'd been to Italy several times but had not spent more than a few nights at a time in Tuscany. We learned about Villa Aquilea from an acquaintance in Chicago who knew the one-time owners and had stayed at the villa on several occasions with his family. Wow, what a great referral! We took 5 couples to Italy; spending the first week at Villa Aquilea and a long weekend in Cinque Terre. The villa was super roomy and comfortable for our group. We cooked several nights, delighted in the on-site "cooking class", wood burning oven pizza party and many restaurants that James recommended. James has surrounded himself with a tremendous support team. Paola was our guide on 2 tours - we could easily have adopted her. Allesandra dropped off a wonderful meal for us at the villa our first night and hosted the cooking class - the best! A different alessandra guided us on a bike tour of Lucca, which our guests just loved. It was truly a magnificent setting and villa with a wonderful group of locals to guide our experience. We're foodies, we're picky and we're adventurous. If you are too, start planning your trip to Villa Aquilea. - Lucy B, Chicago

 

 

I tried for years to plan a trip to Italy, but I always wound up getting intimidated or frustrated and I would put it on the back burner for another year. Friends told me about a trip they took to Villa Aquilea and I knew this was the solution! Our group consisted of ten people, 6 adults and 4 teenage girls, with ages from 16-69! We all had a Great time! The Villa was beautiful and plenty big enough. The town of Lucca is a gem. We loved going to Lucca so much that we actually cancelled a day trip somewhere else to have one more day in Lucca. Highlights of our trip included the walking tour of Florence with the beautiful and intelligent alessandra (planned by James), Cinque Terre and the beautiful sea views, the wood fired pizza party at the villa (planned by James) which was so fun and so delicious, drinking homemade wine and singing on the terrace of the villa, and meeting some of our Italian neighbors who came by to visit! Having James as a resource was invaluable! We plan to go back to Italy in the near future and we will absolutely rent and plan our trip through James! - Andrea D, Doylestown OH

 

The best vacation we have ever had. Our family consisted of my wife and me, three of our adult children and 4 grandchildren. We were there for 2 weeks. Villa was terrific, furnished with everything you needed, great location for daily trips to other great cities. Swimming pool was super for the grandkids. James was very easy to work with and had all the answers to our questions. A once in a lifetime experience. - George T, Fresno Californi

 

 

 

 

The villa was amazing. The views and the architectural detail was nothing short of breathtaking! James took care of everything,and after a magical day of exploring the hill towns, we arrived home to the villa just in time for a glass of wine under the stars, and a heart warming, home-cooked meal right at our very own villa table. Italy shouldn’t be traveled any other way! Sunni C.

We took our 4 adult children and their "others" on a one week trip to Italy, using Villa Aquilea as our base. Ten people is a lot of people to please, but everyone one of us thoroughly enjoyed our stay. The villa was large enough that each of us could carve out private, quiet space no matter what other activities were going on. The pool is not only beautiful, it is a requirement in the hear of the summer, and we spent hours laughing and having our own "summer olympics" in the water. The location is excellent - the views superb - and only a short drive to the train station for very speedy journeys to Pisa and Florence; or drives into the alps. We had a chef come and give us a cooking class...which was superb! Were there downsides? Just to be balanced, let me think. One should know that the drive up the hill to the villa should not be done after a drink or two; but truly, that is the only thing I can think of. Thank you, James, Alessandra and Tamara, and Fredericka, for helping us plan and enjoy this trip. Deb A, Vermont

I think we're all used to hotels and vacation destinations taking carefully angled photos to misrepresent the actual quality of the location. My jaw hit the floor when we finally arrived at Villa Aquilea when I realized it was perched high (900 feet) above the valley floor below with expansive views of Ponte di Moriano and other villages below. The views from the infinity edge pool (both in the pool and under the grapevine wrapped canopy) were also much better than I had anticipated... You will not be disappointed if you choose to book... - Michael F, New York

 

 

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