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We had a wonderful stay at Annette's beautifully decorated, newly renovated villa. We were two families traveling with a total of 5 teenagers. The villa had 5 spacious well decorated bedrooms with shared bathrooms. Two great lounge areas complete with comfy sofas, chairs and upstairs a wood stove. Our bedroom opened onto a patio which on clear days gave views of the Alps. The kitchen was fabulous as was the dining area. We started this trip proclaiming we would not do any cooking but couldn't resist as the surrounding villages markets had such wonderful food and the kitchen made it so easy! The caretaker Anne made the trip extra special and fantastic. She patiently and expediently answer all of my many questions prior to our arrival. She was waiting at the villa to greet us, show us the property and upon request had stocked the refrigerator with enough food for a wonderful first meal of bread, cheeses and meats of the area along with fruits, yogurts and muesli for the following mornings. Anne was a wonderful source of information for the area and its surrounds. She booked and accompanied us on a truffle hunt, left maps and directions for hikes in the areas, booked us wonderful wine tasting and a memorable trip to a local hazelnut farm and factory! Anne and her husband also cooked us a very memorable and fantastic meal at the villa complete with clean-up! One of our favorite meals and nights! Our two sons spent a wonderful afternoon mountain biking around the area on the two very nice bikes at the villa.
Annette thoughtfully provided a very inclusive information book about the villa, troubleshooting any problems, local restaurants, museums, etc. Annette was incredibly timely in answering any questions. The villa is better than depicted and I am already planning my return during warmer weather when we could enjoy the pool and outside barbecue and patios! Thank you so much Annette for sharing this gem with us and many, many thanks to Anne for all of your gracious help in making this vacation so memorable!!!
Friends and I stayed for two weeks at this lovely hilltop villa. Brian and Dianne welcomed us with a lovely outdoor aperativo, which included their own wine and delicious appetizers. Throughout our stay, they cheerfully answered our questions and made recommendations regarding things to do. As a result, we went to a fabulous truffle festival in Bergamasco and had a memorable "white truffle" meal at Il Tre Poggi. We enjoyed Dianne's delicious home cooking on three occasions, including my birthday celebration, and participated in an impromptu group ravioli-making session that was lots of fun. It was so nice to return home after a day of adventures to have a meal ready to eat...and to drink without worrying about driving!
The villa itself is set among lush gardens and vineyards and overlooks a spectacular valley. We loved waking up to a gorgeous view and watching the sun set over the valley each evening. One evening, we were treated to the rare occurrence of the full moon rising over the hill behind the villa -- truly spectacular!
The villa itself has a well-equipped kitchen with everything you need to do your own cooking. The living room is spacious and comfortable and has a gorgeous view. We enjoyed making a fire each evening with the wood that was provided just outside our kitchen door, in the cantina. Also in the cantina was a ready supply of Diane and Brian's wine for purchase at a very reasonable cost...we drank quite a few bottles! The living room had well-organized tourist information for each local town; we used that information to plan several of our adventures.
Canelli itself is a lovely little village. It has numerous restaurants, shops, and grocery stores, as well as the Contratto winery, which is well worth a visit, as it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. We took an all-day wine tour that included the La Spinetta and Contratto wineries, as well as lunch at the Ape Wine Bar, and loved it. We also went on a truffle hunt with a local Canelli truffle hunter, who also owns a salumeria. (The dog found three truffles, and ate one!) After the hunt, we had a wine tasting accompanied by local cheeses, meats, and eggs with white truffles.
Within easy driving distance are many lovely towns. A visit to Alba and Neive are a must, as they are set among the gorgeous rolling hills and famous vineyards of the Langhe.
Many, many thanks to Dianne and Brian for making my stay so memorable. I think you'll see me again!