The villa at Rocca di Benano was an amazing experience and I HIGHLY recommend it. I felt in instant respite mode the second I walked in the door. I was in awe and truly felt the villa provided us an authentic Italian experience — but with all the modern amenities that most American’s love like A/C and wifi! The very best thing about actually saying ‘yes’ to this trip at this villa was Karen. She is kind, professional and genuine. She truly prepared us for what to expect and our various options without bombarding us with too much information. She’s the real deal as far as understanding how to guide us; a true pro. Her pre-trip information packet which she sent through the mail was simply outstanding. It contained all the pertinence from navigating from the airport to countless detailed ideas of how to make the best of every moment. None of the people in our group had ever been to Italy before and her suggestions and experienced help us prepare in such a way that we felt relaxed and confident in soaking in every single second. The villa is an amazing structure and tells a story in every stone. The views from ANY window are stunning. The wine cellar was so unique and such a surprise I took a video of the walk down (way down) to the cellar! The rooms are clean, prepared and comfortable. Each room has so much character you can’t miss. No one in your group will have a ‘bad’ room. Everything is well labeled and easy to navigate (light switches, laundry — yes there is a washing machine and dryer there which we found extremely helpful in packing light enough to return with goodies from Italy! — the trash/recycling/compost etc.). The villa was true magic for us. One night we canceled our plans and ‘ordered in’ and just relaxed on the back terrace. We honestly couldn’t have made a better choice for our once in a lifetime vacation and feel lucky to have experienced staying in this quaint, authentic real life utopia.
We spent 21 incredible days exploring known destinations such as Assisi, Florence, Rome and Siena. All were doable day trips from Benano and we returned each night to the luxurious beds and delectable house wines provided by the owners of Rocca di Benano. The days we will remember even more fondly are the ones driving through the Umbrian countryside, visiting little out-of-the-way places Rick Steves has not written about. There are places recommended in the house book that I hope never get published elsewhere. The owners have provided a guide to the true gems. During our three weeks there, we were joined by three separate groups of family, friends and friends of friends ranging in age from 17 to 69. I believe each of us dreams of getting back someday. The owners have provided everything from perfect physical surroundings, to wonderful house managers, to recommendations for superb chefs and knowledgeable guides. Everything about this trip was perfect.
Outstanding property in immaculate condition. A delightful location with every possible amenity, including unlimited white and red house wine. The property is ideally situated for visiting cities and villages in Umbria and Tuscany every day. One of the greatest amenities offered is the information and advice provided by the owner, Karen, who provides an avalanche of information about the area and available activities. My family has utilized weekly rental properties in Europe for nearly 30 years. This property blows all of the other rental properties out of the water, including time share properties offered by international hotel chains.
What a sweet house and village. The location was perfect for visiting the hill towns of Umbria. We have rented houses several times in the States and Europe but never have we experienced the thoroughness of local information, touring suggestions and attention to quality and detail of this Villa.
Asheville, NC, May 24, 2014
Rocca di Benano was the perfect setting in the picturesque Umbrian countryside for a vacation with extended family. The owners have thought of every detail to make your stay at the villa most enjoyable. The villa has all of the amenities of a modern accommodation without losing the charm and character of the medieval villa. The villa even has a wine cellar with complimentary red and white house wine. The bedrooms are spacious, the bathrooms are modern, and the kitchen is well-stocked with high end appliances, staples, and spices. The living areas are comfortable and beautifully decorated. We enjoyed sitting on the beautiful terrace sipping wine in the evening. The pictures do not capture the true beauty and elegance of this villa. The pre-trip information about the villa, the area, transportation options, and excursions provided by Karen, one of the owners, made planning the trip a breeze. I highly recommend Rocca di Benano. You will not be disappointed!
Cincinnati, OH, May 31, 2014
There are not enough adjectives to describe this lovely villa tucked into the Italian countryside! There were eight adults in our group – consisting of family and friends – and the villa in Benano was our gathering place during our week. The villa is spectacular! We had all the comforts of home in this beautifully updated villa and yet the character of the mid-evil village was preserved. Karen was most helpful as we began pulling the trip together. She sent us a pre-trip check-list (visa reminders, international driver’s license, etc.) and even recommended restaurants in the region. We wanted to enjoy some of the local villages and she gave us ideas of places she has visited and what there was to see in each location. This was simply an amazing trip. Arrivederci Benano! We’ll be back!
Cincinnati, OH, September 6, 2014
Peaceful Benano. The view across the fields of olive trees, vineyards, and Orvieto in the quiet distance was simply wonderful. We took frequent day trips and got to know the lovely little villages nearby. We appreciated the step back in time to a more relaxed way of living. This was our sixth visit to Italy and staying in this beautifully furnished home was the best of all.
Cincinnati, OH, May 25, 2013
Our group of eight visited this incredible villa with its beautiful views and comfortable accommodations. You get the feel of authentic Italian living yet at the same time you have those creature comforts that make you feel right at home. We had dinner and cards in the dining room, wine on the patio, and walks in the neighborhood. We were greeted on a cool rainy afternoon with a cozy fire and appetizers prepared by the caretakers. The group planned our various day trips and must see places following the never fail tips in the guides prepared by the owners. The villa is convenient to many special towns within a short drive. After the hustle and bustle of Rome we were so grateful to experience the smaller cities that truly give a taste of Italian life. What a special week.
Pinehurst, NC, May 25, 2013
We had the most amazing experience during our stay at Rocca di Benano with our immediate family and dearest friends celebrating our wedding. Karen, one of the villa owners, was so wonderful helping us with recommendations for lodging for our guests, suggestions for caterers in the area, sending us photos of every possible angle of the house, providing measurements, and so much more. We were so lucky for all of her help and support! Even though we saw several photos of the villa and the surrounding area in advance, we were still totally blown away by the beauty and charm of Roca di Benano. From the Etruscan cave turned wine cellar to the hand painted al fresco on the bathroom walls, every detail was considered during the restoration of this historic hamlet. Even with all of the modern luxuries, the house still maintains its historic character. The kitchen was fully stocked with high-end cookware, and every kitchen gadget one could possibly need, making it easy to prepare breakfast before we headed out for the day exploring. Our immediate family stayed with us in the house for a week. There were 10 of us total but, because of the layout of the house, there was plenty of space. Benano is a quiet and peaceful town. When you enter the walls, you immediately feel as though you’ve stepped back through time. The neighbors were so wonderful and welcoming, we immediately felt like part of the community. They even allowed us to use the piazza to hold our small reception. Right across from the villa is the beautiful church where we got married. The whole wedding was something out of a fairy tale. This was the trip of a lifetime and a destination that we will certainly visit again.
Rockville, MD, June 22, 2013
The owner was a joy to work with and gave us information on everything we needed to know about getting there, finding grocery stores, and she also made many wonderful suggestions for day trips to several different small towns in the area. Every town we visited on our day trips was charming and we found festivals, cathedrals, Etruscan caves, and great restaurants a plenty. The villa was the most comfortable vacation home we have ever stayed in, and 10 people could be on 4 different floors taking naps or we could all be together laughing at the dining room table. There was also plenty of room for a dinner party on the outside terrace overlooking the beautiful hills filled with olive trees and sunflower fields.
Cincinnati, OH, September 7, 2013
Rocca di Benano is the vacation villa one dreams about. Think about it, you are in a medieval hamlet that looks over beautiful rolling hills and across at distant ancient hill towns in central Italy. Though still medieval, your vacation home is modern and comfortable in all respects. You never lose the feeling of the storybook charm, even when walking into the modern kitchen and especially not when going down into the ancient wine cellar to retrieve a bottle (or more) of vino rosso. Centered between Rome to the south and Florence to the north, Rocca di Benano is perfectly located to take in so much of what central Italy has to offer. Rome and Florence were awesome, but it was the day trips to the smaller towns and villages (easy drives from the villa) that left us with special memories (Orvieto, Bolsena, Castle Viscardo, Torre Alfina, so forth).
Anderson Township, OH, October 5, 2013
Actually, our trip began before we even arrived as the owners mailed us a booklet which contained helpful information regarding our travel from Rome to Benano, sights along the way to consider seeing, where to stop and shop for groceries, driving route suggestions, local towns of interest to visit and helpful details about the Villa, such as the amenities we could expect to find.
Wake Forest, NC, August 11, 2012
We were a group of 8 spending a week at the villa with stays in Rome and Florence bookending our week. Our week at the villa was by far the best part of our trip.
Washington, D.C., June 29, 2013
From day 1 the owner was all about making this the trip of a lifetime. She put us in touch with tour guides, a chef for a cooking class, the train schedule to any towns we wanted to visit, the directions to towns we would drive to, the winery owners, the local restaurants, etc. She truly was our fairy godmother! Because of this villa we all had THE authentic Italian experience!
Mason, OH, October 13, 2012
As a longtime traveler but a first time villa renter, we didn’t know exactly what to expect. However, very early in the process, the owner established a relationship with us by email and phone and we were both re-assured and hooked. Folks, this is a homerun! The owner treated us like family for months before we arrived, and provided us with a pre-arrival document, website, and blog that was almost unbelievable. Included were restaurant recommendations, alternate routes to take from Rome, tips for monetary exchanges, offers of transportation from the airport, and, in general, the sort of information a family member might provide one before their first visit.
Cincinnati, OH, September 29, 2012
We cannot say enough good things about Karen, the owner. She did a fabulous job helping to assure we would have a wonderful experience. She has tons of suggestions of day trips, places to visit, restaurants, and has contacts with outstanding chefs, guides and a personal concierge/driver. Information is well organized on a Pinterest website, plus a pre-arrival booklet she sends you, then still more info in the villa.
South Lebanon, OH, September 21, 2013
The best benefit of Rocca Benano is the unbelievably helpful owner who assisted us in every way imaginable and enriched our experiences significantly. If you’re looking for an Italian vacation away from the big cities and want a taste of the authentic Umbrian country life you can’t go wrong with Rocca Benano.
Mt. Pleasant, SC, April 28, 2012
I booked this villa for myself and 8 adults both family and friends. Everything about this home is exceptional. You will not be disappointed. Karen was so helpful before our stay answering and catering to all my questions. I thought this was too good to be true, but it was perfect! The location was great we took a day trip by train to Florence and drove to vineyards and hill towns and a beautiful lake to relax. The town of Benano was charming and we felt right at home among our Italian neighbors. We really got a feel of Italian culture in Benano and in the small towns nearby.
Freehold, NJ, July 2, 2011
My girlfriends and I and my two children spent one blissful week in this breathtaking home. Home is an accurate word to describe this one-of-a-kind villa in Umbria. Thank you Benano owners for sharing your labor of love with us. The attention to detail and thoughtfulness in the little touches to enhance our stay just blessed us tremendously. You set the bar high for hospitality and it would be such a privilege to return to this magical place again. I have travelled a lot and it doesn’t come any better than this. If you want a great experience — stay at Rocca di Benano.
Houston, TX, June 25, 2011
Our experience at Rocca di Benano will be one of our most cherished family memories. Staying there is a wonderful way to “live” Italy.
Cincinnati, OH, October 9, 2010
You will love it. Why? The hospitality, the architecture, the interior decorating, the ambiance, the views from each window, the friendly courtyard, the villagers, the delicious wines, the vistas, the in-house library of books, the well equipped kitchen and appliances, with every gadget and knife (Julia Childs would have loved). A cave carved into the hillside in the villa was well stocked with wonderful red and white wines that our hosts provided. We traveled the countryside dined out for lunch mostly and prepared the most delicious dinners in the evenings with very fresh vegetables, herbs, cheeses, pastas and meats purchased during the day at the market. We retreated for a marvelous good night’s sleep to our beautiful bedroom that had the most beautifully selected linens. As an artist there was so much to paint and so overwhelmingly beautiful. We had a wonderful vacation and yearn to return.
Falmouth, ME, August 27, 2010
Breathtaking views, warm and cozy, tradition and history galore – what a wonderful place to relax and explore Italy!
Cincinnati, OH, December 2009