Benedetta was the perfect host, very friendly and helpful. Her communication was excellent before and during our stay. A small problem we had was fixed immediately and she provided lots of helpful advice. She met us in Londa when we arrived and we followed her to the house – it would’ve been difficult to find otherwise.
The house was exactly what we were looking for – lots of space (inside and outside) with plenty of character. The kitchen has a huge selection of pans, utensils, crockery etc., slightly old -fashioned, but totally adequate. The rooms are all a good size and the open fireplace was useful for the couple of chilly evenings. The views are absolutely stunning and three outside patio areas gave plenty of space to relax in. Some days were quite windy and felt a bit cool, others were really hot, but it’s easy to find a shady place among the different seating areas.
The pool is shared but we never saw anybody else. The access path is quite steep and rough underfoot - don’t try it in your flip-flops! The pool is a good size with great views. There weren’t any deckchairs when we were there, so we tended to relax at the house rather than the pool.
The location was great, splendid rural solitude that didn’t feel too isolated. We did a number of beautiful walks from the house – a mixture of roads and forest tracks, you’ll need to work some of them out by looking at satellite views. You have to drive through Londa to get there, it’s a 20 minute steep, switchback drive but you rarely meet anyone. The first 15 minutes are tarmac, but the last five are on a rough track and you can easily scratch your car on overhanging shrubs if you’re not careful. You need ground clearance as well - our rented Opel Corsa was fine but we were thankful that it was already a bit battered as we didn’t have to be too careful! I wouldn’t take a car with low clearance or a very long wheelbase along it.
The location is best suited for a relaxing holiday with the odd day trip, rather than as a base for sightseeing, it’s a longish drive to most of the “big sights”. The exception being Florence (we took the 40min train journey from Contea-Londa station - less stressful than driving into the city). We visited Poppi which we enjoyed (don’t follow any GPS app that takes you to Poppi other than through Londa, we learnt the hard way). We flew into Bologna (fantastic city – well worth a stay) and it was an easy 2 hour drive to the house – though best to do most of your food shopping en-route e.g. in Borgo San Lorenzo, the Londa shops are quite small (a couple of mini-markets and a good greengrocer’s).
All in all we loved our time at Benedetta’s house, totally relaxing, great location and a super friendly host. Recommended!