Former hunting lodge turned elegant country hotel, surrounded by a serene Renaissance garden just 5km outside Lucca”
Impeccably restored and expertly managed, Albergo Villa Marta has a tranquil and welcoming atmosphere, along with beautiful views over the valley. You enter up 2 flights of steps on either side of the front door and into a soothing reception area. Soft chenille sofas, exposed beams and original Tessiere floors are complemented by antique furniture, and light floods in through tall windows. Dotted around are 15 elegant rooms, some with soaring rafters and canopied beds, others with doors opening onto the garden. There’s also a comfortable sitting room, plus a restaurant where tasty Tuscan food is served up morning, day and evening. Outside, terraces brim with potted lemon trees, and an inviting pool sits beside a jasmine-covered pergola. It’s all highly conducive to relaxation, but should you fancy some activity then cooking classes, personalised tours and bikes can all be arranged.
- An excellent location in a lesser-known corner of Tuscany, near relatively untouristy Lucca. It's handy for Pisa and its airport, too
- A beautiful garden with a pool, loungers and wonderful views of wooded hills
- Outstanding service: smooth, friendly, professional
- Delicious breakfasts, lunches and dinners, all packed with fresh Tuscan ingredients (including the villa's own olive oil)
- Value for money compared to most Tuscan hotels of a similar standard
- If you prefer contemporary style, this place isn't for you
- The dining room lacks atmosphere, but you can eat outside during the warmer months
- The bathrooms in some rooms look a little dated, but they're well equipped and sparklingly clean
- The restaurant is closed on Sundays, but there are others nearby
Best time to go
Our top tips
- Boutique Hotel
- 16 rooms
- Restaurant (open Mon-Sat) & Bar
- All ages welcome
- Open all year
- Outdoor Pool
- Spa Treatments
- Pet Friendly
- Disabled Access
- Beach Nearby
- Off-street Parking
- Restaurants Nearby
- Air Conditioning
- Guest Lounge
- Concierge Service
- Bicycles Available
Our favourite room is the recently restored Chapel Suite which, as its name suggests, is located in the villa's private chapel on the edge of an olive grove (guests of the suite have exclusive entry to the grove). Beneath the vaulted frescoed ceiling is the double bedroom, with bathrooms on either side - a shower room with toilet on one side, a closet with clawfoot tub on the other. It's a slightly odd feeling sleeping next to an altar, but maybe it's the perfect place to pop the question?
Otherwise, the 15 rooms in the villa are more conventional, with exposed beams, traditionally swagged beds, fresh colours (apple-green, sky-blue) and richly patterned rugs on terracotta floors. It’s worth upgrading to a room on the first floor for a beautiful view over olive groves and hills, though the Classic Rooms on the ground floor are spacious enough. We stayed in one of the latter on our latest revisit and loved flinging open our French windows to step straight out into the garden. Two Deluxe Rooms on the upper floors offer the best vistas; one has a frescoed ceiling swathed in intricate birds and masks.
Beds throughout are queensize (sometimes with a canopy), and extra beds or baby cots can be added to many rooms on request. Ensuites are simple but pretty, with walk-in showers and marble sink surrounds; some come with tubs, too.
- Air conditioning
- Central heating
- Cots Available
- Extra beds
- Safe box
- Satellite TV
An extensive buffet breakfast - juice, yoghurt, cold cuts, traditional Italian cakes and breads - is served from 8-10am on a low antique cabinet which doubles as a bar in the evening. In winter you sit in the salmon-pink restaurant with its open fire and worn beams; in summer, the terrace outside beckons.
The restaurant is also open for lunch and dinner, with a menu of simple yet distinctive local dishes. We tucked into delicious tortellini with walnuts and truffle honey, chicken with a creamy white-wine sauce and a mound of seasonal vegetables, and a wonderful chocolate torte. We also enjoyed quaffing a few different varieties from the wine list, which makes a feature of local labels.
The restaurant closes after breakfast on Sundays, but there are plenty of other options nearby (including some within walking distance) - just ask staff for recommendations. And it would be a shame not to sample some of the excellent eateries in Lucca at least once during your stay.
- Restaurants nearby
- Room service
- Explore charming Lucca. Walk along its 4km of medieval walls, climb the 44m-high Torre Guinigi for superb views, and pop into the beautiful churches of San Martino and San Frediano
- There are dozens of stunning palace-villas around Lucca, with landscaped gardens and lavish interiors; Oliva, Grabau and Reale, outside San Pancrazio, make a lovely day trip
- Head to Pisa to pose by the leaning tower
- Bird-watchers and music-lovers should visit Villa Puccini, set on the shore of Lake Massaciuccoli near Viareggio. Sign up for a 30-minute tour of the interior or a 60-minute guided ornithological tour around the lake, or hire a boat and head out on your own
- Rent a bike for a gentle pootle around the countryside
- Cooking lessons, wine tastings and personalised tours can all be arranged, too - just ask
Activities on site or nearby include:
- Boat trips
- Cooking classes
- Historical sites
- Museums / galleries
- Plantlife / flora
- Private guided tours
- Shopping / markets
- Wine tasting
Children are welcome and the lawned garden is great for games, though please note that the pool is not fenced off. Cots, extra beds and babysitting are available on request.
Family friendly accommodation:
Cots Available, Extra Beds Available
Babysitting is available by arrangement.
Baby cots are available on request.
Remember baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking
Kids Activities on site:
- Swimming pool
- Bikes to rent
Kids Activities nearby:
- The Leaning Tower of Pisa
- The Parco di Pinocchio, an open-air collection of statues, mazes and mosaics dedicated to the famous puppet, 15km east of Lucca
Albergo Villa Marta is situated in the countryside, 5km outside the pretty town of Lucca.
Pisa airport is only 20km away and is served by lots of international flights - click on the links below for a list of airlines. Florence airport is also nearby, but served by fewer flights.
From the Airport
The hotel can arrange transfers, but most guests hire a car as part of a wider tour of Tuscany - see our car-rental recommendations. There is a large car park beside the hotel.
Lucca and Pisa are both well connected to other parts of Italy. You can take a taxi from the stations to the hotel, or ask staff to arrange a transfer.
Detailed directions will be sent to you when you book through i-escape.com.
More on getting to Italy and getting around
- Pisa Galileo Galilei 20.0 km PSA
- Florence Peretola 30.0 km FLR
- Beach 25.0 km
- Shops 5.0 km
- Restaurant 1.0 km