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- A Traveler Recommendation:
Over the last ten years I have explored Italy extensively, and without question Relais Ortaglia has become my home away from home. It is situated just outside the walls of Montepulciano with great views of the Etruscan village and surrounding area. The accomodations within the 15th century stone compound are very comfortable with different room configurations within the main house and several separate buildings. The gardens and pool area are beautifully landscaped with views of Montepulciano, the vineyards and the valley beyond the village. The property is very quiet and relaxing, and it is a short drive or walk to the village. Montepulciano is located about half way between Rome and Florence, so it is perfectly situated for day trips throughout the region. And absolutely the most wonderful part of Ortaglia are it's owners, Terenzio and Mara Biscardi. I have over the years of my numerous visits there become a part of their family. Terenzio is an amazingly helpful and intelligent man who speaks perfect English. Mara also speaks English and is a fantastic cook. They also will arrange “cooking schools” for interested guests that they conduct in their incredible kitchen. The breakfasts are a remarkable spread of food, and while you enjoy your breakfast, Terenzio consults with you about where you would like to go for the day and helps you plan your day trip. Terenzio and Mara love Tuscany, know it very well and their enthusiasm is infectious. Terenzio is also a wine exporter and is amazingly familiar with the regions vineyards and wineries. If you choose, he will plan and take you on a day trip throughout the region visiting wineries and local vineyards. He also keeps a wonderful wine cellar at Ortaglia from which you may be able to purchase bottles of wine while there. I always end up taking several bottles home with me at the end of my visits. I cannot recommend Relais Ortaglia more highly. If you go, you will always remember your relaxing time there and the wonderful and informative experiences you will have had with Terenzio and Mara. Go, and have a wonderful time! Ciao!