Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Il Mulinaccio

About a month ago, I purchased a ticket to an Andrea Bocelli concert in Lajtico at the Teatro Del Silenzio. Lajitco is a very small village and when I asked locals were it was, they had never heard of it. I located it on the map, and it was in the middle of nowhere, about 2 hours away from Florence (per google maps).

Because the concert was in the evening, I would need overnight accommodations. I began an internet search of how to get to Lajitico, and what accommodations might be available.
It took me 6 weeks, and much frustration, and I was at the point that I had reserved a rental car, and was planning to drive to the concert and back to Florence because I could find no accommodation within a reasonable distance, when I stumbled on Il Mulinaccio. The website where I located it is called http://www.toscanasempre.it./ On the site, there are many agrotourismo resorts, which are very popular in Italy.

I corresponded with Stefania about accommodation, and she offered two. I chose Il Mulinaccio, at the reasonable price of 118 euro per night, with breakfast included. Not only was Stefania able to provide the accommodation, but advised me about the train to Pontedera, arranged transportation from the train station to Il Mulinaccio, and to the concert that evening!

The train ride was only 45 minutes from Florence to Pontedera, and of course, I had my usual problem with the train. One of these days I will get the hang of it, but I haven’t managed yet. This time, it was a regional train. The ticket was only 4.50 euro, and as I said, the journey short. The ticket person took my ticket, examined it and said that I was supposed to get it stamped in a machine on the platform. (This I did not know-this was my first regional train ride). As a result, I had to pay a fine of 5 euro. Oh well, as I say, live and learn. The train arrived on time, and Allesio and Frederica, owners of the resort were there to pick me up. There was also a mother and daughter who had arrived from Ireland at the train station who were traveling to Il Mulinaccio and the concert.

The trip back to Il Mulinaccio took about 45 minutes. The countryside was so beautiful and picturesque. Sunflower fields were everywhere, just like the photos you see of the Tuscan countryside. Hills rose all around with vineyards and olive trees, and the smell of jasmine in the air.

Il Mulinaccio is on a hill, and is a beautiful restored farm house with one guest house, and a separate kitchen and dining building. There is a pool and the vistas from the grounds are breathtaking. My room was in the guesthouse, and was lovely. There was an antique metal bed, armoire, side table and chair. The room had a tv and air conditioner, and the bathroom was the size of my apartment. I felt like such a queen!

Once we had settle into our rooms, I took a walk around the grounds and made some photos. Allesio’s mother, Ila had prepared a buffet for us with bruschetta, insalatas, salamis, cheeses, wine and bread. It was beautiful and delicious!

A van transported 10 of us to the concert that evening, and that is a whole other story!

If you plan to be in the Tuscan countryside, I highly recommend Il Mulinaccio as a place to stay. It was a delight after the noise and hustle and bustle of Florence.

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