We didn't stay in this villa but in Apartment Limone, a one bedroom apartment just above this villa owned by the same person. Our visit was arranged through Luana Zangerelli of Italytorent.com.
The apartment was a delight, even better than we had anticipated. The layout and structure of apartment make it the ideal vacation home. Then, the view: quite wonderful and ever-changing in the varying light that defines Umbria. However, the owner has taken the basics and made it into something even more special, something that reflects her taste and travels, and which also brings the apartment fully to life. I would confidently recommend it any couple travelling to Spello.
We were also very impressed by the communication and responsiveness to requests, although I now know I should have made more requests. My wife had a problem when dimpled sheets were put on the bed, which exacerbated her skin condition. Within ten minutes, someone was there with fresh sheets. The owner was also extremely helpful in arranging PCR tests for us, and solving other little problems. I’m sure we could have made more use of her local knowledge. However, there is an independent streak in us that sees travel as an opportunity to discover things for ourselves. And that we were able to do. We were also very impressed by the person who cleaned the apartment, great energy and very thorough.
The holiday was made possible by the fantastic support we received from Italytorent.com represented by Luana Zangarelli, a completely remarkable person. Her thoroughness, kindness, integrity, and commitment to her community all contributed to making the holiday, not only possible, but so easy and so enjoyable. We started planning this holiday more than two years ago, and we have experienced the Covid pandemic, changes of rental accommodations, and more issues. Luana spent far more time helping and communicating with us than the money she might earn from us could ever justify. Money is not her motivator. She builds your faith in humanity.
Spello by itself is fabulous, otherwise we wouldn't have spent three weeks there. However, it's also ideal for visiting many other towns within a 40 minutes drive. We like Trevi, both from a distance and up close. Montefalco is great and has several great restaurants, L'Alchemista being our favourite. Assisi is far less kitschy than I imagined. Rasiglia, a restored weaving town in the mountains above Foligno, has increased in popularity, but is still entrancing with all its waterways. We also really enjoyed Todi and Spoleto.
We explored wine, olive oil, and food. We were familiar with most of the Sagrantinos di Montefalco. We visited the Romanelli winery, perhaps our favourite for their Medeo, and really liked the people there. Castelbueno and the big turtle has some good wine, although it’s larger scale and less family orientated. Tenuta Bellafonte, whose Sagnrantino is the only one available in British Columbia, was also a favourite. Their Rosso di Montefalco Pomino introduced us to that wine. Milziade Antona had very good wine, as, of course, did Caprai and Lungarotti. We don’t drink white wine generally, but we did have a couple of good glasses of Trebbiano di Spoletino. We also visited a few olive oil places, Azienda Marfuga near Campello sul Clitunna was our favourite, perhaps because of its proximity to Fonti di Clitunna, a small but very special spot. We also liked Azienda Viola in Foligno, who, we found out, have a distributor in Vancouver. We visited a few of ceramic places in Deruta, and bought a gorgeous plate at Grazie Deruta. There were also a few cashmere stores.
What I like most about the restaurants in Umbria is that they each have their individual personality, but they are all committed to producing good food from local produce. There are no chain restaurants in Spello or most of the adjoining towns. The restaurants are owned and staffed by people who care about their community, and the restaurants are a focus of that community. Our favourite restaurants in Spello were Pinturicchio and Il Buchetto. Solid, well cooked food. Outside of Spello, there's any number of other restaurants. Our favourite was Serpillo in the tiny hamlet of Torre al Colle. Our second visit there was spectacular. Innovation grounded in tradition. For example, tagliatelle made from chestnut flour with hare and fennel pollen. Even a casual stop for lunch with the locals at Siro in Torgiano revealed quality. One dish was Uovo Barzotti in a pecorino sauce with some grilled zucchini slices and two bruschette.
Spello is a very special place, and Andrea offers a very special home from which you can enjoy it.