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Peacefully located in the most wonderful position, 1 hour N of Lucca. In the heart of a very sleepy & peaceful tiny village. Absolute privacy, total peace and unbeatable views. Set in 15 hectares of private land including olive groves & chestnut woods. This enormous villa, spread over 3 floors, & originally constructed in the 1400’s has been newly refurbished with loving care to provide a high quality holiday with an extra special ambiance. This converted monastery sleeps 14 + 12, with 7 bedrooms, 6 bathrooms, 5 kitchen/living rooms. There is also a further detached house on the grounds, with a further 4 bedrooms, 4 bathrooms and a further two living/kitchen/diners. Perfect for a group of couples or small families celebrating a special occasion, this villa provides an amazing level of space and privacy for groups within groups, but plenty of space to eat together both inside and out.
There are high chestnut beamed ceilings, cotto floors, fireplaces, original stone staircases beautifully shaped ceilings, & Tuscan colours. Please note that for parties over 25, there is a surcharge of £50 per person per week
The villa: The accommodation is arranged as follows:
Ground floor: Enter in via large arched wooden doorway.
On the right, into kitchen/living diner, leading through to corridor with 2 double bedrooms & shower room.
On the left, into kitchen/living diner, leading through to double bedroom &shower room.
1st floor: From the hallway up stone staircases to the first floor where on the left is a further kitchen/living diner, leading to double bedroom with en-suite shower room.
On the right to another kitchen/living/dining room which leads to beautiful private terrace with great views.
This accommodation is connected to a further studio style double bedroom which also has its own independent access if required, via a large terrace overlooking the gardens…..
Second floor: This is the ‘penthouse’ apartment boasting a wonderful romantic terrace leading from both living area and bedroom.
The converted barn is situated close to the pool area and consists of two 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom apartments each with their own living/kitchen/diners and personal terraces, each with beautiful views.
The gardens: Outside:
There are three private terraces leading from three of the suites, and there are also private terraces at the Barn.
Communal large traditional style courtyard, with original flagstones, surrounded by arches and traditional stone walls .
Lit at night, and perfect for large groups dining al fresco.
Wood burning ovens, grills and BBQ. Music system.
Grassed garden area.
115 hectares of private land including olive groves, chestnut woods and open fields ……
Vegetable garden where guests can pick produce,
Chestnut woods with Cashmere goats - fenced off of course,
Pool 13M x 6M with amazing views over countryside,
Laundry room and Internet point.
A little about location:
Situated on the ‘sunny side’ of the Garfagnana valley within the commune of Fosciandora, which is an area which retaining its old world charm . Villa Sara is very privately situated in the smallest of the ancient peaceful villages, in the commune, & the one that arguably has the best views of all! Despite the very quiet & dramatic location, the Villa is only a 2 min drive to a local bar/shop, post office & pharmacy & a 10 minute drive from the local town of Castelnuovo which has all facilities – shops, bars, restaurants, train station, famous Thursday morning market . Barga the mediaeval cobble stoned town is a mere 15/20 minute drive, Lucca 1 hour and Pisa 90 min max. Florence can be reached in 1 hr 20 min….. There are lots of towns to visit, but the real beauty of the area is in the wonderful hilltop villages, and amazing countryside. The drive into town from the villa is full of absolutely beautiful views.
By on 22-Jul-2017
We had a really fantastic vacation at Costola on july 1st to 16th.
The place is gorgious, and everybody had a wonderful experience. The Apartments are so well furnished and modernised, and everything was at the highest quality and well functioning.
The environment is very beautiful, and the views from the place are just breathtaking. And we very much enjoyed, that outdoor furniture had been set up, so we could all sit together enjoying the meals and being together.
The outdoor grill and pizza-oven functioned perfectly well, and the swimming pool was just perfect for both children and adults.
The owners, whom we saw frequently, were very friendly and forthcoming, and also very helpful, in the few cases, where we needed a little help.
So, all in all, a great experience, and we certainly are ready to recommend Costola for other families, who are looking for vacation in the Mountains of Toscana.
By on 24-Jun-2017
Where to begin! We are currently sat at the airport and have Costola Tuscan blues! We have just had the most amazing week which we will remember and treasure forever. We stayed in Costola along with 27 other family members to celebrate our wedding. We held the actual wedding blessing on site where a further 20+ guests joined us for the celebrations, overlooking the beautiful garfangana views! We we're then legally married in Barga town hall on the Friday. The owners Rosalba and Amadeo are both fantastic and played a key part in our wedding celebrations. They were both so accommodating and welcoming! They cooked for the group for two of the nights before the wedding and catered for both wedding days on the Thursday and Friday. The food all week was amazing! Local meats, handmade salads and pasta, breads, salaumi and ofcourse lots of local wine and beer! Amadeo is the life of the party and got everyone up dancing to his wonderful italian music! He made all the guests do shots of grappe the night before the wedding! He was brilliant fun! Rosalba is lovely she will go above and beyond to make sure you are happy and have everything you need. We were truly spoilt all week with how accommodating both the owners were. The venue itself is beautiful. The original stone, buildings and traditional italian decor is just perfect, very rustic! The facilities were all very good and each individual apartment had a kitchen dining area which is great for such a big group as people had their own area to go and relax if they wanted too. The grounds around the venue have various seating areas/courtyards which again provides lots of space for individual families to relax without feeling like you are all living on top of each other. We even had a few friends camping on the flatter grass areas which was perfect! Amadeo has done a wonderful job restoring the monastery, it is beautiful and the panoramic views are what really frame the property. Lorraine at Tuscan retreats also made our experience at Costola so lovely. As we held our wedding there you can imagine there was a lot of questions and organising with the owners which Lortaine played a massive part in. She is great and very helpful! Costola will always be a very special place in our hearts and we will be back with friends and family in the future! Thank you for the best week!
“large group (6 families) summer vacation”
By on 13-Sep-2015
great and spacy place with many varying appartments some with great view. the new appartments (seprate house at the pool) are modern and great with large kitchen and nice bedrooms.
The pool, the table tennis and the pizza oven invite for group events and joint cooking. Many things to do in the shorter and wider surrounding (hicking, byciling, citiy tours). Silent and remote place which is great to relax but it takes always 1hr drive to get the the tourist places (Lucca, Beach, Massa, ....).
The host family was just fabulous introducing the history of the building, giving a tour to the church tower and allowing to harvest fresh tomatoes in the garden. Fortunately we had a friend with us who spoke italian.
By on 25-Apr-2015
I spent a long weekend in Fosciandora for a "surprise" event around my wife's birthday. We were a group of more than 20 people aged from 9 to 50. We booked all the apartments in the Convento for a total privacy. Location is beautiful while apartments are nice and clean. Amadeo and Rosalba were just great and we felt like to be at home. Last but not least the accomodation is absolutely cheap
“Wonderful holiday in mountainside villa”
By on 30-Aug-2014
Our family group of 17 (adults and children - 4 up to 24) had a marvellous time in this beautiful converted monastery. The old building itself was a pleasure to be in, full of character and lovely interiors, and the more modern poolside house had its own more contemporary charm. Fantastic views on all sides of the stunning mountains, excellent pool of a decent size and lovely terraced gardens. Our hosts Lorraine and Amadeo were very helpful; the only problem we had was when the washing machine stopped working on our last day and that was fixed pretty swiftly. The surrounding countryside was stunning, lots of lovely towns to visit, particularly Barga close by and Lucca a bit further away. The little bar and shop in Migliano, a kilometer from the house, was a friendly and useful resource, and the huge supermarket at Gallicano had everything we needed. A particular favourite place to eat was the wonderful restaurant at the bottom of the hill run by scottish/italian chef Claudio - Ristorante Bar Il Ponte di Ceserana.
The steep and sharply curved drive from the main road up to the house was a little nerve wracking at times and I would certainly stress the importance of having a decent engine - one of us struggled on the upward journey with a Fiat 500 containing 4 people and a lot of luggage!
We would be delighted to revisit another time. Thank you Lorraine and Amadeo for a wonderful holiday!
"A stunning location with impressive accommodation."
By on 28-Sep-2013
We loved it! A group of over 20 family and friends met to celebrate a range of birthdays. The area is beautiful, the accommodation was just as described and the owners were very friendly. The pool was popular and the meal cooked for us was a great celebration. Cars are fairly essential, but used for going out in small groups during the day. We gathered each night to eat together in the courtyard under the stars. It was the perfect place for a relaxing week. Having separate apartments gave privacy when it was needed. Definitely recommended.
By Pauline & Grant on 27-Jul-2013
We stayed from 13 July 2013 for 2 weeks and had an absolutely amazing holiday. We celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary and rented the house and the barn for 25-30 people. The appartments are very spacious, the view is breathtakingly stunning, it lends itself to perfect communal meals, clean and large pool, very friendly caretakers - thank you Amadeo for the copious amounts of Grappa you offered! The appartments lend themselves to private quiet space too, should you need some. Thank you Lorraine for all the information, and thank you Rosa and Amadeo - for the great meal and the friendly welcome.
By on 25-Aug-2012
We enjoyed a fabulous stay at the converted monastery in August this year. It was my daughter who was poorly on the first day and Sara and Amadeo very kindly brought us a jar of honey to help soothe her throat. When we returned home and unpacked our bags of prosecco, olive oil, balsamic vinegar and other various foodstuffs, I found the jar of honey amongst them.
Please will you forward my grateful thanks to Sara and Amadeo once again for their kindness. With kind regards and thanks again for a superb holiday.
We could not have had a better holiday in this villa.
By on 11-Aug-2012
We could not have had a better holiday in this villa - the building is stunning, the pool a great size and well looked after, and the views incredible. We were a family party of 22 but never felt crowded as the building is split into apartments, each with its own bedroom, sitting room, kitchen/diner and bathroom (NB the kitchens have hobs and microwaves but no ovens, although we managed to cook plenty of food nonetheless). The place was beautifully maintained and the owners really friendly, although they didn't speak much English. We organised for them to cook for us in the traditional wood-burning oven in the grounds and it was well worth the cost, which included quite a lot of wine! They even have a CD system which allows music to play throughout the pool and courtyard areas. There is plenty to see nearby, either by car or by train from the local station, as well as lovely walks in the surrounding hills We visited Lucca, Pisa and the market in Castelnuovo, as well as taking a few walks through the surrounding hills and villages. There was much more we could have gone to see but the location itself was so idyllic we ended up not leaving very often. Things to be aware of: 1. the building is at the top of a very steep hill up a winding road - the directions from the website are very accurate and easy to follow, but make sure the car is in good nick or it won't make it to the top! 2. because of its location on this hill there is a fair amount of climbing during the stay - from the car to the building; up the stairs to the apartments; up the stairs or slope to the pool and other parts of the grounds, and down again - well worth it for the views, but not suitable for anyone with limited mobility and probably not for pushchairs or wheelchairs either. We would highly recommend this location to (reasonably fit) large groups looking for a relaxing time by the pool, cultural or shopping days out and great food and wine. We all agreed it was our best family holiday yet!
By on 25-Jun-2011
We spent a week at this amazing villa in June 2011. We searched a long time for somewhere suitable for a group of 20 (9 adults and 11 kids) as a 40th birthday celebration and this place was perfect! As others have said the photos on here do not in any way do the property justice. The views are simply breathtaking. We were a group of five families with kids ranging from 1 - 12 yrs old and we found the individual apartments excellent as we each had our own space to escape to if needed, that said we tended to cater on mass most of the time as there is a fantastic BBQ and a pizza oven to cook in. You simply must take the opportunity to have Amadeo and Rosalba cook for you when you stay. For 30 euro a head you will be treated to a feast with wine and grappa. The whole place lights up at night and there is an outdoor stereo system for guests to use. The hosts are a wonderful couple but they speak very litte english so be prepared. They also have a restaurant under the villa for guests to use if they wish. The local area is great and would recommend Lucca, Pisa and Florence as day trips and there is a wonderful national parc near by which the children loved. The pool was beautifully clean and is up away from the main house which was reassuring with small children. The top apartments do have the most wonderful balconies but you are not suitable for very small children. The older ones loved sitting up there before bed time, chatting and drawing while we were enjoying some grown up time on the terrace below. I can't recommend this place highly enough - it is amazing. The only improvement opportunties would be to have a floor plan of the property to make it easier to work out the layout before you arrive and a guest book that people could share their views and experiences of the area. Thank you - we hope to be back one day :-)"
By on 11-Jun-2011
We just wanted to say what an amazing week we had at Costola, it truly is the most breath taking property. Please pass on our sincere gratitude to Amadeo and Rosalba for their fantastic food, drink and hospitality, it was the icing on the cake.
We cannot rate it highly enough and feel the photos on the website do not do it justice, not that anything could capture the views as well as actually being there.
By on 28-May-2011
"We thoroughly enjoyed our stay, it was wonderful! We are so lucky to have experienced such a beautiful and peaceful part of Italy! The villa was lovely, even better than we had imagined! It worked really well for our large group. We made good use of the bbq and outdoor living areas. The meals we had prepared for us by Rosalba and Amadeo were delicious and made for lovely evenings! We would recommend this property highly. The location was perfect for a relaxing stay but also close enough to well known and out of they way places for sightseeing. And the owners/staff are very welcoming, helpful, lovely people. If only we could have stayed longer!"
By on 14-May-2011
Joe, I and our family wanted to give a big thank you to everyone at Tuscan Retreats and to Rosa and Amadeo.
We thoroughly enjoyed our stay, it was wonderful! We are so lucky to have experienced such a beautiful and peaceful part of Italy!
The meals they prepared for us were delicious and made for lovely evenings!
I hope we left the property in order. I did forget to check the bbq so I apologize if it wasn't left tidy. My brothers used it so I hope
they cleaned it out. If there is anything we need to do just let me know.
Thank you for your help making all this possible! Please pass on our gratitude to Rosa and Amadeo
Fantastic place for my 40 birthday.
By on 24-Apr-2010
I Invited friends and family two stay at this fantastic place for my 40 birthday. The monasterie are really beautiful and the atmosphere in and around the monastery is like being put back in time. The view of the valley takes your breath away. We were 25 guest, staying in the 6 appartments, with plenty of room, and very clean and beautiful. I booked the monasterie through the Home and Away and tusscan retreats, and Lorriane and Sara were very helpful throughout the process. on my birthday ??the owners made food for us in the old "restuarent" in the basement which is really charming and the food and their hospitality where perfect. Thank you very much. The pool and area around the monastery are fantastically beautiful and is perfectly situated for hiking or driving tours in the old towns in the mountains. All in all a great place, deffiently certainly the best place ever. It is not the last time we visit Costola and the Garfagnana John from Denmark