“Beautifully restored farmhouse turned boutique B&B, in the lush foothills of the majestic Apuan Alps”
Ex-architect and engineer Thomas, originally from Germany, has been coming to this region of North Tuscany for 2 decades, first buying a holiday home, then embarking upon this ambitious 2-year restoration project. His run-down farmhouse has been completely transformed into a gorgeous 4-room boutique B&B. The hillsides are landscaped into bijou gardens, there's a breakfast terrace and sunny pool with loungers, and the old goat and sheep barns now do duty as a pool house and airy stylish living room - perfect for pre-dinner drinks. There's much to do nearby. We explored authentic Lucca with its intact Renaissance-era walls, and dined out on delicious local fare; others bike and hike in the Apuan Alps national park, or drive 15 minutes to stunning beaches. Yet the most memorable part of our sojourn was simply relaxing in these blissful surroundings. A gem.
- Just 4 romantic bedrooms, with high-quality fixtures and finishes; a cut above traditional Tuscan decor
- Delightful breakfasts served whenever you want beside the pool
- Thoughtful, capable service, including a personalised guide to local restaurants and attractions
- In summer, the 350m altitude, thick walls and insulated roof keep it refreshingly cool: no air-con or fans required
- The delights of lesser-known Tuscany: beaches and caves, mountains and nature, wine and food - it's all here and just 30 mins from Pisa airport
- You'll need a car, and the driveway is very steep with a tight hairpin bend (we left our car at the bottom and walked up)
- You'll have to head out for lunch and dinner, no hardship with 40 restaurants inside a 15-minute drive
- No guests under 18, to maintain the peaceful atmosphere. If travelling with family, we suggest their nearby villas instead
- A 3-night minimum stay
- No TVs, minibars or tea/coffee facilities in the rooms, but staff can bring drinks to the courtyard, or (after hours) you can prepare your own in the pool house
Best time to go
Our top tips
- Boutique B&B
- Breakfast only; restaurants a drive away
- Only adults welcome
- Open all year
- Plunge Pool
- Spa Treatments
- Pet Friendly
- Disabled Access
- Beach Nearby
- Off-street Parking
- Restaurants Nearby
- Air Conditioning
- Guest Lounge
- Boules Court
The 4 light-filled rooms are spread over 3 storeys and linked by a winding staircase: 2 Deluxe Double bedrooms facing the garden and valley, and a pair of Suites overlooking the plunge pool. All share the same crisp and calming aesthetic: soft grey walls, original beams and terracotta floors, smart upholstery in natural colours, and contrasting pops of pink in throws and cushions.
Ground-floor Giacomo Puccini has a semi-private sunny patio, so is great for romantics, while Giosue Carducci, where we stayed, has a good-sized shower bathroom and long valley views. Adjacent is the elegant Michelangelo Buonarroti Suite with a queensize bedroom and separate living room. Top-floor Gina Lollobrigida Suite has a kingsize bedroom (which can be configured as a twin) and additional living room with impressive chestnut beams; it benefits from being beside the shared TV lounge (there are no TVs in rooms), so is the best choice for more privacy. All rooms have power showers in their bathrooms, mosquito screens on the windows, orthopaedic mattresses, and toiletries by ADA Hotelcosmetic (Thomas himself designed their factory!).
- Central heating
- Ipod dock
- Mosquito net
- Safe box
It was a delight to rise and to saunter down to a beautifully presented simple breakfast poolside, with birdsong bursting forth around. The coffee was perfect, the fruit platter both delicious and nutritious, the local cheeses and cured meats a taste sensation. There are eggs cooked to order, and croissants with artisan jams too. In cooler weather, eat in the ground-floor dining room, or in your bedroom if you prefer. Coffee and tea aren't available in-room but can be brought to the terraces and courtyard when staff are present; otherwise you can serve yourself in the kitchen.
From time to time a complimentary aperitivo is offered, with home-made Tuscan finger food. Ask in advance and you can use the kitchen to prepare cold snacks or meals; there's a guest fridge (in which to chill your bottle of Prosecco for booking through i-escape). But you'll probably dine out; there are many good restaurants nearby. We enjoyed authentic local fare and spectacular views at Le Tre Terrazze in nearby Monteggiori, and a sensational meal at upscale Ristorante La Dogana in Capezzano Pianore.
- Organic produce
- Room service
- Vegetarian menu
- The majestic Apuan Alps are a mecca for cyclists and hikers; the National Park is on your doorstep
- You're 400m up from the coast so enjoy extraordinary views from authentic small towns such as Monteggiori. Bohemian Pietrasanta and Camaiore are also worth a visit
- The beach clubs of the breathtaking Versilian Coast are 15 minutes' drive; head north towards Liguria and the Cinque Terre for photogenic towns including Corniglia and Vernazza
- To the south-east are Tuscany's heritage jewels: Lucca, Florence, San Gimignano and Siena (allow 35-60 minutes and park on the outskirts) - stroll around historic streets and enjoy marvellous buildings, lovely restaurants and good shopping
- Read by the pool and play boules on the shady court
Activities on site or nearby include:
- Historical sites
- Mountain biking
- Museums / galleries
- Plantlife / flora
- Shopping / markets
- Wine tasting
This is a tranquil couples' retreat and only guests over 18 are accepted.
- Airport: 30-40 minutes' drive (Pisa)
- Hospital: 15 minutes' drive
- Shops: 8-10 minutes' drive (Camaiore)
Villa Montebello B&B is off a winding road in the foothills of the Apuan Alps in northern Tuscany, near the small town of Camaiore. The Versilia coast is a 15-minute drive away.
The nearest airport is Pisa (40km, a 30-minute drive); you can also fly to Florence and Rome. Click on the links below for a list of airlines serving these airports.
From the Airport
You'll need a car here; see our car rental recommendations. There is parking beside Villa Montebello but note that the driveway is very steep initially and has a tight hairpin bend 25m up, so you may prefer to park at the bottom on the road and walk up.
The nearest station is Pietrasanta, which is served by trains from Genoa, Florence, Pisa, La Spezia and Rome (it is 2.5 hours to Rome on the fast Frecce Rossa Red Arrow service which bypasses Pisa), and is about 10-15 minutes away by car/taxi.
Detailed directions will be provided when you confirm your booking through i-escape.com.
More on getting to Italy and getting around
- Pisa International Airport 40.0 km PSA
- Amerigo Vespucci Airport (Florence) 98.0 km FLR
- Beach 8.0 km
- Shops 3.5 km
- Restaurant 1.5 km