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Italy Vacation Rentals - Certified Homes, Villas, & Apartments
Roman Countryside Townhouse
In the hills north of Rome, on the foothills of Mount Cimino lies a fairy tale village at the feet of an imposing castle. Throughout its history, Soriano nel Cimino was home to Etruscans, Romans, popes and nobles - each ensuing wave leaving its mark upon the vestiges of the last.
Today, Soriano is a jealously guarded getaway used as a first or second home by Rome's most fortunate inhabitants. Frequent trains from nearby Orte, a 15 minute drive away, reach downtown Rome in 45 minutes or less. This amazingly close and convenient oasis also appeals to travelers seeking to blend eternal Rome with the spacious affordability of life in a medieval hill town.
Townhouse Sorina sits high up on the town on a pedestrian lane lined with similar homes and shares many of the same breathtaking vistas with the fortress that towers above it. The views from Sorina's many picture windows and a large, furnished roof deck frame a sea of overlapping roof tiles against a rolling backdrop of hills and valleys. This scenery along with the many ancient towns that dot the area are remarkably similar to neighboring Tuscany and Umbria.
In 2009, Townhouse Sorina underwent an extensive renovation conducted by a well-known, London based, American architect. Both the furnishings and fittings demonstrate the English speaking owner's desire for high quality and modern comfort. Two full living rooms adorn the house. The first one at entry level with its wide beamed ceiling and working fireplace reveals the home's medieval nature. The second living room on the floor above captures the surrounding countryside from large modern picture windows and is separated from a sleek spacious kitchen by a large dining table.
In comparison to the rest of the house, the bedrooms are not large. Both bedrooms and the study are air conditioned with use included in the price. The majority of the windows are screened. The study on the uppermost floor has the entry to the roof deck and offers a sofabed and a laptop with Wi-Fi. Cleaning services and meals may be arranged when booking.
Townhouse Sorina is a strictly non smoking home that requires nimble guests who are very comfortable doing multiple steps both inside its walls and around the town. Even the closest car drop off point in the church square means a walk of 100 yards uphill with scattered steps along a pedestrian lane.
One of the town's main attractions is a unique micro-climate that keeps it cool in the summer. Thus, the reason so many Romans flock here on summer weekends. Rich in antiquity and cosmopolitan in nature, Soriano attracts spectacular concerts and celebrations. Most notable are the Tuscia Jazz Festival that transforms the town's main piazza into an outdoor stage from late July through the month of August and the Sagra delle Castagne or Chestnut Festival, an ancient celebration with costumes, pageantry and medieval tournaments spanning the first three weekends in October.
For a town of 8000 inhabitants, Soriano nel Cimino offers plenty. The outdoor market comes to town on Friday mornings. There are monuments, including the castle's towers that are open to the public, along with restaurants and trattorie serving the area's specialties that include exquisite and prized Porcini mushrooms. Another delicacy is a Porchetta sandwich made from roasted suckling pork served hot and street side.
A neighborhood swimming pool club with a cafe bar is about one mile outside of the town center. For a reasonable fee, guests may purchase a daily pass that provides use of sun chairs, umbrellas and a gym.
Soriano nel Cimino or Surrina Vetus as it was known nearly 3000 years ago lies at the southern edge of the early Etruscan kingdom of Tuscia. A dominion that covered northern Lazio, most of Tuscany and parts of Umbria. Thanks to modern highways and public transit much of this ancient Etruscan realm including Rome, their old nemesis, is within easy day trip range.
A 15 minute drive from Soriano reaches Orte with an entrance to the A1 highway and a train station with frequent 45 minute service into downtown Rome. Within 20 minute drives are: Bomarzo, the famous grotesque sculpture park enthralling both young and old, Viterbo, the provincial capital with therapeutic sulfur springs and baths or the exquisite Palazzo Farnese gardens of Caprarola. Lake Vico, a perfect setting for a relaxing picnic or a swim along its volcanic sand shoreline is 30 minutes away; Lake Bolsena: 40; Rome, Orvieto, Todi, Spoleto or Etruscan Tarquinia on the Tyrrhenian coast: 60; Montepulciano or Perugia: 90; Assisi: 100.
Mezzanine floor: One air conditioned bedroom with a queen size bed. One bathroom with shower.
First floor: Living room with TV and Ipod dock opens to an eat-in kitchen with stove top, oven, microwave, fridge and dishwasher. One air conditioned bedroom with a queen size bed.
Second floor: Air conditioned study with sofabed, laptop and door to a furnished rooftop terrace. One bathroom with shower.