I’ve been to Umbria just to discover why travellers (Italians but above all foreigners) like this area and which is the best kept secret that “captures” so many people! After 2 journeys in different seasons of the year, maybe I understood: here is the land of quietness and peace.
I selected, as accommodation, an Umbria farmhouse that reminded me of a spiritual retreat, Genius Loci.
This strange name is Latin and means “guardian spirit of a place”: the Romans depicted this figure as a relief in many altars and churches, but now the Genius states for a mood, an ambiance of pure relaxation.
I met the Tacconi family, the owners of this Country Inn, that are bi-lingual and bi-cultural. They are involved in art, music, gastronomy, history, in other words the most interesting sides of Umbria. They run the farmhouse with the aim to give a special experience to the guests. We talked a lot of the Umbrian vineyard, because Maurizio Tacconi is a very well-versed expert of enology.
The rooms offered are quite big. I stayed in a room with a view on the olive groves. My room had a soft bed, private bathroom (with plush terry towels) and amenities like an LCD TV, a cd player, the direct phone, and Wi-Fi Internet access for free, very essential for me because I had my netbook with me and I checked emails everyday. They have also a cd loan library, so you can listen to a good selection of music in your room.
Daily housekkeping clean is included, as in other standard Italian hotels. And while there isn’t a restaurant, there is a buffet breakfast that offers a wide choice among pastries, cereals, yougurt, coffee, tea and fruit juices.
The owners suggested some places where I could have lunch in the surroundings, and they also proposed some cooking classes and tastings (that I haven’t tried, probably the next time!).
They produce extra virgin oil and red wine DOCG, I think it’s a good idea for a gift if you come to Umbria for the first time.
To arrive at Genius Loci, in Bevagna, by car is the best way, because it is easier to move around the area and the streets are very charming. If you cannot come by car in Italy, I suggest you rent one at the airport in Perugia, or call a taxi at the train station (the closest is Foligno, a little town near Perugia).
It was spring, the climate was very nice, so I came back during the last fall, where the colors of the trees gave me a new welcome. The swimming pool outside, in the garden, is a great benefit of Genius Loci. I stayed here also in September, on the last year, and the climate was very nice. The exact address of the farmhouse is Via Monti Martani 23, and you can contact them with the contact form on their website, or by phone at +39 335 6890023. The mid-season, in Umbria, is on March, April, October and November and for me, these are the best periods to travel in this region. For wine and food Umbria is probably one of the best places in Italy, an excellence that becomes tradition, and I’m really happy to have known one of its enchanting aspects.