La Casa Piccola
Villa | 3 bedrooms | sleeps 5
Umbria is known as "the green heart of Italy" and at La Casa Piccola you will have the perfect opportunity to experience its beauty. Set on the wooded lower slopes of the Mt Subasio regional park, the house's peaceful surroundings make it ideal for a relaxing holiday. Yet it is only 7 kilometres from ancient, pink-stoned Assisi. With beautiful views over vineyards, olive groves and green valleys, the house provides the perfect opportunity enjoy the delights of the Italian countryside while still being in easy reach of the wonderful restaurants, markets, fashion shops and art-filled historic hill-towns of unspoiled Umbria. La Casa Piccola has three bedrooms sleeping five people and is fully equipped with every comfort. If you are looking for a holiday where you can relax in the garden some days and go out exploring, shopping or eating well on others, La Casa Piccola can be recommended.
Sit and read under the pergola in the delightful garden, to the background chirp of crickets and birdsong or go walking on the well-marked tracks that criss-cross the mountain itself, where you will rarely sight another walker. You may even see some of the wildlife like badgers, deer or porcupine that make their homes in the woods. The villa is part of a tiny hamlet of houses where the friendly Italian neighbours will make you feel welcome.
|Size||Sleeps up to 5, 3 bedrooms|
|Nearest beach||Lake Trasimeno 50 km|
|Will consider||Long term lets (over 1 month)|
|Nearest travel links||Nearest airport: Perugia 20 km, Nearest railway: Assisi 10 km|
|Family friendly||Suitable for children over 5|
|Notes||No pets allowed, No smoking at this property|
Features and Facilities
|Luxuries||Log fire, Internet access, DVD player|
|General||TV, Video player, CD player, Telephone, Table tennis, Satellite TV, Wi-Fi available|
|Standard||Kettle, Toaster, Iron, Hair dryer|
|Utilities||Dishwasher, Cooker, Microwave, Fridge, Washing machine|
|Rooms||3 bedrooms, 1 bathrooms of which 1 Family bathrooms|
|Furniture||1 Sofa beds, Single beds (1), Double beds (2), Cots (1), Dining seats for 6, Lounge seats for 6|
|Other||Linen provided, Towels provided, High chair|
|Outdoors||Private garden, BBQ|
|Further details indoors|
The white-tiled bathroom has a shower unit with door, a handbasin, toilet and bidet. All towels and linen are provided.
All bedrooms are equipped with bedside tables, bedside lights, wardrobe and chest of drawers. The house is recommended for five persons, however the single sofa bed located on an inner balcony floor, usually used as a studio, can accommodate a sixth person. A child's cot can be made available if required. The house has a Wi Fi connection for your laptop computer.
The washing machine is shared with the owner and located in a separate utility room. The rotary clothesline in a corner of the garden is also shared with the owner, when in residence. The garden is otherwise solely for the use of guests. The floors throughout the house are tiled with the exception of the inner balcony room, which has a wood floor. The walls are white and hung with attractive art works. There is a good stock of books in the house as well as CDs, DVDs and videos. There is Sky television. The living room looks out over the garden and the kitchen window looks out over the wooded valley behind the house.
|Further details outdoors|
The garden, with its roses as well as fig, olive, walnut, lilac and bay trees, looks out on the surrounding wooded slopes, farms and valleys. Potted geraniums and other plants give a colourful display. Garden table and chairs, shaded by a vine-covered pergola, are provided and barbecue equipment is supplied. The pergola is ideal for sitting out and eating on a warm summer's evening. Off-road hard-standing parking space is provided. The garden is for sole use of the holiday-makers, although the clothes line is shared with the owner. There is a table tennis table.
All rooms have heaters and there are electric blankets on all beds for the cooler months. Windows have fly screens. May not be suitable for very young children (toddlers) or the disabled as there are stairs between living room floor and ground floor and also between living room and inner balcony room. Otherwise, children are very welcome. Babies are also welcome and there is a cot available. House cleaning and changing of bed linen and towels is carried out weekly.
The Umbria region
Umbria is known as 'the green heart of Italy' because it manages to be lush and green even in the middle of the hottest of summers. Its wooded slopes and valleys and its mediaeval hilltop towns of pinkish-grey stone boasting churches and museums full of art works, add to its gentle beauty. Its people manage thoroughly modern lives while preserving the best of their ancient traditions.
Perhaps the most famous Umbrian of all is St Francis, known as the Little Poor One, and now patron saint both of Italy and of the international ecological movement. Many believe his presence can still be felt in the serene atmosphere of the streets and squares of his birthplace Assisi. Those who wish can visit the many sites associated with this gentle 12-century saint and even see the tree where he is said to have talked to the birds.
Umbrians love their food, drizzling their own home-produced olive oil -- among the best in Italy -- over chunks of toasted bread, grilling their meat over wood fires, slicing truffles over their pasta, savouring their red and white wines grown from grapes ripened on hillside vineyards. You can enjoy their regional specialities in local restaurants where you will be made most welcome -- or you can join in at a summer festa in any one of dozens of small villages, where the food is local, the atmosphere lively and to which everyone is invited.
Go anywhere in Umbria and you will be surrounded by beautiful countryside with views that take in olive groves, vineyards, lakes, rivers and mountains. On Lake Trasimeno at Umbria's heart, there are beaches with pedaloes and ferries to the islands in its centre. In towns like Perugia, Spoleto, Gubbio, Assisi, Todi, with their lively bars and restaurants, the history might be pre-Etruscan but the fashions in the boutiques or gracing the local women -- and the men, for that matter -- will be the very latest. Yet you will also find villages and farms where the old ways and the old styles are still upheld.
Every summer, the Umbria Jazz festival and the Trasimeno Blues Festival attract many top musicians but there are also many classical performances to be found throughout the area. Dominating central Umbria is Mount Subasio, a regional park , and it is here you will find La Casa Piccola, right at the heart of all that is best in ancient Umbria.
Only seven kilometres from La Casa Piccola is historic Assisi, one of the most beautiful towns in Italy with its magnificent 12thc. basilica housing frescos by Giotto. As well, there are the various sites associated with St Francis and St Clare to explore, including the humble monks' cells in the woods on Mt Subasio where Francis spent much of his time and the beautiful convent of St Damiano founded by Clare. Nearby Santa Maria degli Angeli, down on the plain in front of Assisi, has its own magnificent basilica devoted to the little chapel restored by St. Francis.
In Assisi you can wander through the ancient streets, past pink-stoned houses with their overflowing window boxes full of colourful geraniums and petunias, choose from a dozen or more flavours of ice cream at one of the bars or sit at a table in the square to drink coffee and watch the passing parade. You can visit the many fascinating museums and art galleries or simply soak up the atmosphere in this beautiful Umbrian city, the spiritual heart of Italy. As well as small supermarkets and gift shops, restaurants serving dishes at reasonable prices abound. Assisi and nearby Spello both have attractive town swimming pools. In early May Assisi holds the Calendimaggio, a mediaeval celebration with songs, dances, flag-tossing and drumming as well as torchlit processions with beautiful costumes. In August the week-long 'palio' of San Rufino is held in the town, with a mediaeval market and displays and processions. In fact, hardly a summer's day goes past without some form of entertainment in the main piazza, to be enjoyed in the warmth of the evening.
Even closer to La Casa Piccola is the mediaeval walled village of Armenzano, a fascinating example of the way people of the past often lived in hill towns fortified against outsiders. Both Assisi and Armenzano are on the slopes of Mt Subasio whose woods and untouched spaces have been preserved unspoilt since the area was declared a regional park. The mountain, which dominates the local area, is criss-crossed by trails and walks where there is seldom another soul to be seen. The woods are home to creatures like deer, porcupine, hares, pine martens and birds. Some visitors have even spotted the wild boar who still roam these peaceful forests, usually staying well away from human beings. The more adventurous visitors can go hang-gliding from close to the summit of 1,200-metre Mt Subasio or go pony-trekking on the lower slopes. For many, however, the peaceful atmosphere of sitting in the garden at La Casa Piccola, enjoying a glass of wine and reading a book while the cicadas chirrup and the birds sing, is activity enough.
As for other towns within easy reach, Perugia, the regional capital and a university town renowned for its fashion boutiques, Spello, Spoleto, Montefalco, Gubbio, Arezzo, Corciano, Siena and Orvieto are recommended. Here you will find churches, museums and galleries filled with art works by Il Perugino, Giotto, Piero della Francesca, Caravaggio and others. There are the remains of a Roman town at Carsulae, the site near Lake Trasimeno where Hannibal and his Carthaginian army defeated that of Rome, palaces with interiors virtually untouched for hundreds of years. The beauty of Umbria is breath-taking.
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Calendar last updated:16 Jun 2014
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