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Dear Newsletter Reader,

This month we are talking "Time for you".

Tuscany is full of places to visit and things to do but why not take a day or more to ensure you relax and do something for you, perhaps a day at the Spa or a relaxing round of golf or book someone to cook a meal for the family. Whatever it is, we hope you will find some ideas to inspire you to have some time out.

As always, please feel free to let me know any suggestions for items you would like us to cover in our newsletters.



Booking a private cook or chef to come to your apartment or Villa to provide a meal for you and/or your family is one of our To Tuscany guests favourite things to do during their holiday!

dinner tablePlanning in advance with the chefs means that you can come up with your specific choice of meal whether this is a simple affair or a gourmet selection complete with accompanying wines and a sommelier. There is something to suit every budget and the chefs are able to create seasonal menus around any food intolerances or allergies to ensure everyone travelling enjoys a typically Tuscan meal.

Chef MatisseMany of our private villas offer a 'cook' service where a local chef works with the Villa owners to provide a service for clients staying at the villa. Contact is made through your local agent and the owner to discuss menus and prices.

Where your villa/apartment information mentions a 'chef' service, it means that there are no particular chefs associated with the property and you can therefore choose yourself from our list of private chefs


Holidays are a precious time for relaxing and what better way to relax than by having a massage or a spa treatment. Whether you want to make a day of it and visit one of the Spas in Tuscany; book a professional masseur to visit you in your Villa or apartment; or spend the day at the thermal springs, there is a way to ensure you have some 'me time'.

MassageIvana is a Professional masseur who has spent a number of years studying and working in the larger Spa resorts within Italy and has now become 'freelance', visiting clients in their homes or their rental Villas and apartments. There are a range of treatments available which can be booked as 'one-offs' or as a number of treatments for your group. For more information and contact details please click here

The most famous of Tuscanys Thermal Springs and Spas can be found at Montecatini Terme near Pistoia and Saturnia in the South of Tuscany.

Montecatini TermeMontecatini Terme was designed as a spa resort by the Grand Duke Leopold in the 18th Century and for the past few hundred years has been a centre of well-being and health. Tourists have the opportunity to visit the thermal springs and spas for the day but there are still people who follow a complete programme of detoxification sometimes lasting 3 months. Montecatini terme and its neighbouring town of Monsummano Terme are approximately halfway between Florence and Pisa on the highway. For more information click here

Saturnia SpringsThe story of the Saturnia springs are steeped in legend which says that they were created during an argument between the gods Saturn and Zeus; the springs were created when a thunderbolt thrown by Zeus fell to the ground. Evidence of the Romans presence can still be seen in the grooves of the iron wheels of Roman vehicles on the old road in the main town and the Etruscan ruins close to the thermal springs show us that the area was known as a place of healing even before the Romans. Today the hot springs cascade over small waterfalls into shallow pools surrounded by large flat stones so that they can be enjoyed by all. As it is free to enter, the springs can be busy at certain times. Saturnia lies approximately an hour from Siena, half an hour from the Grossetto area and an hour and a half from Rome.

If you prefer the comfort of an established spa with modern facilities using the local hot springs within a luxurious setting, the Rapolano Terme spa just outside of Siena may be the place for you. It offers a variety of treatments from massages to mud therapy. For more information, click here.

At our properties Castello di Sovicille and Sant'Angelo Relais and Sant'Angelo Farmhouse, spa facilities are available on site, please read the property descriptions for more information.


Toscana Mia Cookery SchoolWhy not spend a day at a cookery school during your holiday? It is a great way to learn about the food, the local life, to enjoy a good meal and not have to worry about the washing up!

There are many cookery schools within Tuscany, some offering lessons for 2 people and others offering group lessons and family lessons to include the children.

More information can be found by clicking here:


Prada bagItaly is a dream destination for anyone who knows their Pradas from their plimsolls. Over the last few years there has been an increase in the amount of outlet shopping areas which the top designer brands such as Gucci, Prada, Dolce & Gabanna and Armani use to sell on any excess stock particularly before the next seasons outfits arrive in the main shops. You can expect a discount of 20%-30% and occasionally a few one-offs for 50% discount or more.

Tuscany has a number of these outlet shops where you can visit and grab yourself a designer bargain, click here for details.

Dolce and GabbanaOn the subject of Designer merchandise, just a reminder that w
hilst you are visiting the big cities such as Florence and Pisa, you will see many traders offering fake designer handbags, purses and scarves at bargain prices.

You may be surprised to know that it is an offence to BUY the items as well as sell them! If you are seen by a police officer buying the fake goods, you will be stopped and issued with a fine of up to 1000 Euros AND you will lose the item/s that you bought! Unfortunately, in most cases the trader is the one that gets away with it!


Golf in Tuscany
Golf and Fishing are regarded as two of the most relaxing sports so what better way to enjoy a day in Tuscany than by having a round of golf or enjoying tranquil river surroundings whilst fly fishing.

Tuscany boasts a wide selection of quality golf courses, including the championship Ugolino Golf course. To Tuscany were lucky to have the Caddiemaster of Royal St Georges Golf course in Sandwich, Kent (home to the 2011 Open Golf Championship) visit Tuscany and play the courses for us. His report on the best clubs and courses to visit can be found by clicking here:

Fishing in ItalyIf you enjoy fishing, Tuscany may not be the first place you would think of to enjoy your sport, but actually, there is a range of fishing available from Lake to Fly. You can go by yourselves or you can go with an expert - more details can be found by clicking here:


Rob Burrows 1364BN - San Gimignano
Wow! View of San Gimignano and beyond - Burrows 1364BN

Dont forget about the To Tuscany 2011 photocompetition. Entries (maximum of 5) must be sent in JPEG format and the prize is a hamper of Tuscan delicacies. Send your entry to with your name, reservation code and a title for each of the photos.

This months photo is of San Gimignano looking down from one of the towers and was sent to us by Rob Burrows of New Zealand

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We hope that you find the information in this months newsletter useful.

Please let us know of any content that you would like to see included in our newsletters and we wish you a fantastic year wherever you are spending it!

Click here for contact details

Tanti Saluti

Dympna Docherty