We just returned after a wonderful stay at Villa Malfatti. Stefania and her cousin Bianca manage the family estate, and all our questions and concerns beforehand had been responded to and dealt with immediately during our emails before we arrived. They were both there at the villa to welcome us and show us around when we arrived. We were 5 couples traveling together with different expectations and levels of comfort, and Stefania and Bianca had take care of everything before we arrived.
It is easy to find the place with a GPS in the rental car, as we did, and from the moment you drive thought the gate into the courtyard, you will be thanking your lucky stars that you chose this place.
The villa itself is beyond gorgeous. It's been in the family for 5 generations and Stefania and Bianca can tell you all about the house. It is not only a gorgeous Italian estate, it is also a home, and you see that in all the rooms that have family memorabilia on the walls, antique knick-knacks everywhere and beautiful period furniture. Some of the bedrooms are very large and have private baths, some are smaller and share bathrooms. All are comfortable and old world charming beyond belief. A little drafty perhaps, but it is an old house after all.
Stefania and Bianca had arranged a couple of things for us. First a cooking class dinner at the house. A chef, an interpreter and a server/cleaner-upper arrived late one afternoon, and the chef taught us to make Piedmontese specialties. It was hands-on for all 10 of us, and we had a fabulous and delicious evening.
The other special dinner they planned for us was with another chef who came to the villa and cooked a wonderful dinner for us. A charming local organic vintner came also and paired the different courses with appropriate wines. It was a food and wine lovers paradise! We had such a good time at both those events.
There are many excursions to take from the villa. Turin, of course, but also Milan, to name the bigger cities. We were lucky to be there during the truffle season, so we went to the truffle festival in Alba. Tremendous fun. We also went to Barolo that same day and went to a wine tasting. Barolo is beautiful. What a day.
Another day we went to Stresa at Lago Maggiore, which is less that 1.5 hours away and a very scenic drive. The weather was great and it was one of the highlights of our trip. We took a 1-day hop-on hop-off ferry ticket to the 3 Borromean Islands which is so fun and interesting.
Stefania and Bianca could not have been nicer or more accommodating. If we thought of something, they made it happen. They were easy to reach, and they were gracious, helpful and charming hosts.
We hope to return again and again.