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Reviewed 6 September 2012

This could be a very short review – Pruneta di Sopra is exactly as it appears and far more. It is the place you want to rent. It is beautiful. It is tranquil. It is comfortable. The scenery is stunning.
The location is perfect. The days in Northern Tuscany are hot, but being a little way up in the mountains means the nights are just right.

The property is reached up a twisting track, you are not overlooked by any neighbours – at night you can see the lights of the village but hear nothing – utter peace. The distance between the two parts of the property ensure privacy whilst being close enough to shout hello. Good for getting away from the noisy element of the family!

The entertaining areas have superb views over the mountains, and the Milky Way makes an appearance most evenings. Citronella candles are a must on an evening to keep away buzzy things. Buy a load locally in the town.

The pool is cool enough to refresh when you jump in, but warm enough to spend all day in.

The pizza oven is brilliant – easy to use and a fun night to cook pizzas at home, but keep an eye on them as they cook in a flash (burnt foccacia second time around – too much Chianti perhaps?).

No air-conditioning? No problem - the house is cool during the day (and the days were 38 degrees for the week we spent there). The fans in the rooms are enough.

Do get Marco to come cook for you – genuinely a very nice chap, a great cook and good, fun company. Responds well to Barolo. A memorable night to be had.

For those with young children:

The distance from the house meant our two year old and three year old were not near the pool when not with an adult. The entertaining areas face away from the pool, so temptation isn’t there for them when not in the pool. The distance gives you enough time to catch potential escapees. You will love the sheer space they have to run around in while remaining in sight.

Recommend taking a baby gate for the top of the stairs if you can. Take plastic plates / cups / bowls. The highchair is good quality.

For Cooks:

Everything you need is there to get by, but you may like a good kitchen knife.

ENSURE EVERYONE PRESSES SHUT FIRMLY THE FRIDGE DOOR – we didn’t first day and couldn’t work out why it wasn’t chilling food. Our bad... but easy to do.

The big supermarket in Gallicano on the Lucca road has everything for everyone, from scratch cooking, butchers, bakery, food and non-food. It’s around 10 minutes drive to the south.

Things to do:

Go spend a few hours is Castelnuovo – an unpretentious, untouristy Tuscan town. Stop in the centre and eat with the locals. Charming, cheap and very good food. Not much up at the Fortezza, but worth a drive up to see the views.

Lucca is about 50 mins south. Stunning and worth a day out. Florence takes 1.45mins on the train from Lucca – the best way to get there apparently, but the train is hot and the aircon didn’t really make a difference. Molto caldo. Might explain the atomic tantrum our three year old threw on the Pointe Vecchio...

For history lovers, read up on this area during World War Two. The Gothic Line of fortifications pass through Borgo a Mozzano on the road to Lucca. Worth a look at the remaining tank obstacles and the museum.

Alessandro and Fabrizio are welcoming, helpful, charming and genuinely interested in you being comfortable and happy, though remain unobtrusive. Spend an hour talking to Fabrizio – he grew up in Castelnuovo and is passionate about the area and its history. Fascinating, warm and a real gentlemen.

I said at the start this could be a short review – however in writing these words for Pruneta it is easy to become expansive, the place really, really did deliver a quality experience for the six of us. Four chilled out, relaxed adults and two very happy, tired kids.

Go – it will deliver what you hope it might.

  • Stayed: August 2012, travelled with family
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2  Thank Stelladave
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 July 2012

We stayed in the villa at the end of July 2012. We were warmly welcomed with cake and Proseco. Alessandro and his father explained how appliances worked. We had a party of 6 adults. The grounds are very impressive. The villa is a great size, clean, well stocked kitchen. Pleanty of hot water for showers. The real wow factor are the grounds, views and infinity pool . Make sure you take clear inflatables for the pool as colour inflatables mark the pool for the next guests. We had some fantastic evenings using the BBQ and pizza overn, allow at least 2 hours for the pizza overn to heat up. The tools for cooking the pizzas are supplied. My Son and his partner stayed in the Dependance and loved it. There is a fridge and kettle within this smaller villa.

We travelled to Lucca and Castelnuovo, and visited some very high villages in the mountains. It was hard to pull ourselves away from Pruneta.

Take your own dishwasher tablets so you dont have to buy a large pack when you are out there. There are plenty of supermarkets on the way to the villa, and a large Conad in the main Castelnuovo area. The Conad can supply you with all you will need for your cooking needs. Get a few citronella candles for outside. We took mosquitoe spray and got very few bites.

We really loved our stay, and were very sorry to leave. We will definitely go back. Thank you Alessandro and your father for a wonderful time.

Lynne B,

  • Stayed: July 2012, travelled with family
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2  Thank lynnedb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 October 2011

We had a great week at Pruneta di Sopra (with 4 adults and two small children)! It was a beautiful and tranquil setting for a relaxing holiday. The owners were extremely welcoming and helpful. The house was very comfortable with a well-equipped kitchen.

Castelnuovo di Garfagnana is a very pretty town with an excellent selection of ice-cream shops (we sampled most of them).

  • Stayed: May 2011, travelled with family
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Thank Matthew B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 September 2011

Pruneta di Sopra was the perfect setting for a family reunion as we came together from New Zealand, Germany and England. The house and dependence gave us plenty of space for 6 adults and a toddler. The wood fired pizza oven inspired us to have a pizza making competition which was lots of fun. Marco, from Slow Food, cooked us the most delicious meal at the house one evening and I would recommend that you try his cuisine. The scenery is majestic and there are quite a few walks that start from the grounds and take you further up into the hills. We walked into Castelnouvo di Garfagnana along the footpath marked with the red and white sign on market day. The owners are very attentive. This is a wonderful place to relax and unwind.

  • Stayed: September 2011, travelled with family
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Thank Celia C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 August 2011

We thoroughly enjoyed our stay at Pruneta di Sopra - loads of greenery and space which is perfect for children to run around. We loved the peace and tranquility - no cars, roads or other houses nearby, just the splash of the pool.
The owners were extremely helpful and made us very welcome. We loved it and can't wait to go back

  • Stayed: August 2011, travelled with family
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1  Thank Sarah H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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