What to do Pictures of Italy




written by Redazione Visit Italy

Ostuni città bianca

Fancy a holiday in the countryside, or a quiet retreat where you can work, study, or relax immersed in nature? Then Casa Cares – Retreat and Group Meeting Centre is the place to go. This beautiful villa overlooks the town of Reggello, located 36 km from Florence. This area has been inhabited since the 10th and 11th century but the town has been officially recognized as such only in 1773. There are many things to see and do here. 

If you are keen of churches and museums of sacred art, then you should definitely stop at the Vallombrosa Abbey which was founded in 1036. Another must stop is the "Pieve di San Pietro a Cascia", an elegant church prized both for its exterior and for the sculptures treasured inside. Furthermore, it also holds the Masaccio Museum of Sacred Art which displays the "Trittico di San Giovanale", Masaccio first masterpiece, among many other noteworthy paintings. Also stop at the Church of Saint Agatha in Arfoli, which dates back to the Goths who venerated the goddess Agatha, protector of women. Enriched by a beautiful cloister dating back to the 1200s, it displays a 700-year old slab of stone decorated with crests and a lily of Florence, and taken from the original tomb of the church’s patron family. 

If churches are not for you, you can go and visit the Sammezzano Castle located near Leccio. This building was bought in 1605 by a Spanish knight and renovated in the 1800s according to the Arab style – in fact, it recalls both the Taj Mahal on the outside and the Alhambra on the inside. The castle is surrounded by one of the largest parks in Tuscany, also influenced by the Arab style both in the plants thriving there and in the architectural decorations. And if you have enjoyed the park and wish to take a hike in the surrounding countryside, there are three options you can choose from: the Vallombrosa Arboretum, which holds a collection of rare plants, the Forest of Saint Anthony, and "Le Balze", an area where you can enjoy the stratification formed by different types of sand, clay and gravel. 

But back to your hotel now! Located 500 meters over the Arno River valley and nestled among olive tree terraces, vineyards, and woods above, Casa Cares is a converted farm villa dating back to the 18th century. The history of the place is quite interesting as well as it went from being a farm, to a children’s home, to a vacation house for the Waldesian Church. Today Casa Cares is a retreat and group meeting centre

The villa offers 20 spacious and comfortable bedrooms, thus providing accommodation for up to 55 people. These are usually furnished to accommodate between 4 and 6 people – single guests are, however, welcome. There are many other facilities as well such as meeting rooms, ideal for school groups and seminars, a beautiful sitting room providing an occasion to relax and socialize, and a large dining room. Breakfast is, in fact, provided and lunches and dinners with typical Tuscan food can be easily arranged. Furthermore, the beautiful gardens of the villa are an ideal place for relaxation and meditation, especially as the view you can enjoy from our terraced gardens is breathtaking and keeps changing with the turn of the season and the evolving of the day.

So what are you waiting for? Book your stay today!

For more information: http://casacares.typepad.com/

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