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  • “ Hello Zak: Incredible week at Costa Della Luna in July. The house was magnificent and offered everything we had hoped for in our vacation dreams! Your pointers on where to eat were excellent. Marianne was enlisted to cook for us and did so with great flair and charm. We enjoyed our time immensely! Regards, -Craig and Kay ”

  • “ Hi Zak, Just a short note to tell you how much we enjoyed Villa Manafiore and the service your company provides. We had a great meal by the cook, all enjoyed the bedrooms with private baths, and the fact that your refund check arrived so timely just topped our experience! You are welcome to use me for a reference at any time and we hope we can do business with you again. Sincerely, Gary B. ”

    - Gary B. - Villa Manafiore - 2003-10-28
  • “ Zak, I want to tell you what a wonderful experience Villa Camponi was for all of us who were there from June 23 to July 7. Everything was beyond expectations, even the weather. All of us thought that you might want to play up the views more in your promotions for the villa; they were spectacular. Thanks and best regards, Jerry ”

  • “ We did have a fabulous time, Bartolo was a great house. Thank you for all your recommendations! You were so helpful and made it so easy for us. The woman who takes care of the place brought us some eggs from the hen house one morning. Actually, all eight of us are getting together this weekend, cooking a big meal together, and sharing all our photos of the trip. I plan on renting the house again! Thanks, Bill. ”

    - Donne K. from San Francesco USA at San Francesco - 2001 July
  • “ Dear Gary, thank you so much, Arpicella was beautifully situated and the views from the garden are spectacular. We are still enjoying the fruity olive oil pressed from the local groves. Pienza is our favorite Tuscan town, so the close proximity was a plus. Your restaurant recommendations were invaluable.  Again, thanks for your help. We would recommend Tuscanhouse.com without reservation. ”

  • “ Hello Zak, I just wanted to let you know that the entire family had a great time on vacation. The villa was beautiful and extremely comfortable. We did lose a key to the villa which was subsequently found. Could you tell me where and to whom I should mail it. Thank you again for all your help in planning our holiday! Best Regards, Scott ”

    - Scott E.- Villa Torriani - 2001-07-16
  • Casa Collina was great and just as we envisioned an old Tuscan house would be. The gardens not only look great, they smell great. Rosemary as tall as we are blooming everywhere. Great big yard - kids played a lot of soccer. The owner is wonderful, very friendly and warm. On a couple of occasions when we were gone touring for the day, she brought our laundry in for us when it was going to rain. We would highly recommend this villa to anyone. Thanks, Suzanne ”

    - Suzanne S. - il Convento - 2002-04-30
  • “ Just a note to say "thanks" for everything, we had the trip of a lifetime in Tuscany. Your service was excellent, and the housekeeper was a gem. The villa was simply perfect. Carla and I are already planning to return next summer, and might be interested in a month-long stay (maybe just a bit further north). Keep your eyes open for us. Best personal regards, Kevin. ”

    - Carla and Kevin P. - Villa Fallerini - 2001-09-25

About Us

what we do

Planning a vacation in Tuscany is an exiting task filled with expectations, and butterflies in the stomach! You’re the one put in charge by your family and friends, and since this trip to Tuscany is usually the biggest break in a year from the routine of work and study, you want to make sure that things go smoothly. We’ve been helping people like you for decades in choosing the right rental villa in Tuscany that becomes your home for this dream vacation. Living here in the central Siena Province for a good part of each year since the 1990’s, has given us the chance to explore this storybook region in fine detail. We know the villas we rent, their owners and care-takers, the nearby towns and villages, the roads around for detailed directions, the best places to eat and shop, and the local guides and cooks that add to the success of your vacation. We are happy that so many of our clients come back, some for several times, since enjoying a vacation in Tuscany only once in your life is just not enough! Next, read a bit about us, to help dispel those butterflies.

who we are

Gary is Australian and had a career in the airline industry (PanAm, Qantas). He set up a corporate travel agency in New York City that he moved to the Gulf Coast in the 1990’s. Zak comes from Finland and worked as an architect after graduating from Ga Tech in Atlanta in the 1980’s. After long vacations in Tuscany and trips all over Italy, in 1997 we purchased a property in the small Tuscan village of Chiusure, now rated as having one of the best views in Tuscany by Travel & Leisure (March 2015). We became residents here for almost half of each year. We formed TuscanHouse in 1998 due to many requests from friends in Tuscany on how to find people to rent their villas. Now in 2017, Gary and I operate the business from Australia, where we live while away from our home in Tuscany.

Thoughts for travellers

A selection of hopefully helpful posts about travelling in Tuscany.

Find news by category or tag

Frequently Asked Questions

Restaurant guide for Siena Province

Restaurant guide for Siena Province Updated June 2017. This list is our personal recommendation for eating well. The restaurants where you should make reservations are noted with *. During the summer call at least one day in advance for dinner (cena) reservations (pre-notazione). Kitchen is typically open for lunch from 12:30 to about 2:00 pm, for dinner: 7:30 – 9:30 pm, and later on weekends. In restaurants, pizza is served at dinner only. During the day, buy pizza by the… Read More

Things you need to know

Please read thru these helpful hints for a happy holiday! PERSONAL SAFETY Italy is generally considered to be a safe country. Most Italians are courteous and helpful, especially in the countryside and small towns of Tuscany. If you are ever in trouble, people would probably go out of their way to help you. Just look at the way they care for immigrants arriving by the thousands on rickety boats from Africa every week … Besides road accidents, the main concern… Read More

When you arrive in Tuscany

ARRIVAL AT YOUR VILLA Plan to arrive as close to 4pm as possible and please read the arrival details that are included at the bottom of your driving directions. Upon entering, please take a look at all the appliances and ask the Manager to show you how they work. Ask them to show you where the electric fuse box is located and how to reset the electricity. You should report anything broken or out-of-order in the first 24 hours and… Read More

Latest posts

Among the many, many good places to eat is a local favorite, that may not always be right for tourists. Osteria Acquacheta is a place that encourages you to bring your own wine. They will charge 1.5 euros per person as corkage. They serve wine in simple glasses. You would sit at long communal tables and be served some of the best local food. Pici and several other pastas and soup are made with pure homespun goodness, all local stuff. The big Fiorentina steak dominates the long list of mains, and would be a meat-lovers dream come true (shared with 3 or 4 people). Grilled pigeon, rabbit, pork, sausages … deer, duck, salt-cod, truffles, beaked cheese … and the excellent choice of many greens and vegetables. Giulio, the owner is a famously grumpy-looking guy, but has a sense of humor and speaks English. Some customers don’t get it, so their reviews can be mixed. Take my word for it, Acquacheta is an excellent place for a hearty and delicious meal. Closed on Tuesdays and 3 months in winter. Via del Teatro, 22 – 53045 Montepulciano (SI), Tel:+39 0578 717086,  Fax:+39 0578 717086, no bookings by email.

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Weather in Tuscany

Weather in Tuscany and best times to visit The climate in Tuscany is generally mild and very similar with another famous wine region, that of the Napa Valley in California. The summer is hot and the most popular time for vacation, while spring and autumn offer better weather for outdoor activities. Pool Season: June, July, August and September July and August are the warmest months (90°F high to 65°F low) while June and September offer comfortably warm weather without it… Read More

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Ristorante Vita Nova

Vita Nova is a good restaurant in the Province of Arezzo, located in the countryside near Castiglion Fiorentino. With a nicely furnished spacious restaurant and covered outside tables on a panoramic terrace, Vita Nova serves traditional Tuscan food with a modern touch. It’s located at a farmhouse estate in the hamlet of Brolio, in one of the most scenic and beautiful areas of the Valdichiana, just 14 kilometers from Cortona, and a short 10 minute walk from Villa de Michelangioli. Read More

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Ristorante La Terrazza Chiusure

The best deal in 2017 is at  Ristorante La Terrazza Chiusure (on Facebook) same as  Osteria Pizzeria Delle Piazze (on Tripadvisor), serving classic meals on the north side of the village in Chiusure, with big portions of inexpensive tasty food. Bring everyone with you, this is a great place for kids, too! 4 people can eat for 50 euros total, and the pizza is superb. I always ‘splurge’ and order the Antipasto Goloso and the Pizza Pazza. Tell the charming ladies, Giovanna… Read More

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Locanda il Paradiso

Locanda il Paradiso Locanda il Paradiso (on Facebook, Google) has been here in Chiusure for decades (10 km to Asciano and Buonconvento). It’s located on the edge of the village and offers a simple menu of summertime food with cold starters, hot soups and pastas at fair prices. Nothing is over 8 euros . The Paradiso has a wide covered terrace up front and a great view down to the Monte Oliveto abbey. This humble local cafe has become a favorite… Read More

Contact TuscanHouse

Gary and Zak are now in Tuscany for the months of June, July and August 2017. Please send your request by email and we’ll get right back with you.  And you can call Zak at (+39) 348 338 1656.  Thanks!


Italy (+39) 348-338-1656
US fax / voice (+1) 801-640-5012
Australia (+61) 0418-190-853
Skype tuscanhouse.com