Why rent a villa if you can have an entire hotel? A family planning a multi-gen Italy adventure in honor of a grandfather's birthday thought the same and is taking over Tuscany's La Bandita for a week next summer. This family-friendly country home (the owners are a former music exec, a top travel writer and their adorable son) is the perfect launch pad for exploring the region's markets, vineyards and historic towns, but it's equally great for pool lounging, lemonade sipping and sleeping late. Extend this dream trip with some time on the Maremma coast: we discovered some beautiful kid-friendly homes that get beach time in addition to country living. Get in touch to find out more.
Read on for our review of La Bandita by Meg Nolan Van Reesema.
- Farmhouse turned eight-room hideaway set dramatically atop a hill overlooking the glorious Val D’Orcia below, La Bandita is every bit as relaxed as it is picturesque.
- Owned by transplant Americans with their own young son, the vibe is incredibly family-friendly and very much mia-casa-e-sua-casa.
- The hotel chef dishes up family-style dinners three times a week, and can organize private dinners, but there’s no 24/7 restaurant.
- Chef-on-demand style dining, plus the owner will happily pre-arrange grocery runs and store baby food.
- Super relaxed ambiance – closest thing to a villa hotel but staffed with a hands-on owner, who just happens to be a young Dad.
- Breakfast and cooking lessons for kiddos are included, and children under five eat for free.
- They best (only) option for a family of four to stay together, is the Pig Sty suite, which is in a separate building away from the main hotel and has a living area with a double sofa bed, as well as bedroom, kitchen, huge bathroom and private outdoor space.
- All except standard rooms can accommodate one rollaway bed or crib (no charge for under-17s).
- All eight rooms have a clean, modern style in honey and white shades, with Busatti linens, rainfall showers, free WiFi and water.
- Remote location means you must get in the car to go anywhere or do anything.
- The close quarters and family ambiance means you know your fellow guests kid’s cries as well as those of your own.
- Guests are welcome to use the kitchen when the chef’s not available — a plus for families who like having the flexibility but not for those after a break from parent duties.