A couple of miles up from Certaldo Basso, through vines and olives and a private road, is a pretty cluster of farm buildings on a gentle rise. In the tall pale stone farmhouse is La Rondine (Swallow), a lovely big ground-floor apartment for two, full of light and charm. In the ochre-hued haybarn, beautifully renovated with brick vents intact, are three more. Each apartment is independent but all interconnect – great for one big party. Families can choose between La Lucciola (Firefly) and La Libellula (Dragonfly), while La Coccinella (Ladybird) is a sofa-bedded studio for two. Expect character and cosiness, soft colours and old beams, pretty kelims on gentle terracotta, well-equipped little kitchens and lovely country antiques. Libellula is on the first floor – with an extra dining space outside – and Lucciola is the largest, with a great sitting-dining room and a Tuscan fireplace, and a glazed arched window that glides open to a loggia. All have views sweeping over the valley to the famous towers of San Gimignano. Friendly Miriam meets and greets and knows all the history; her husband is delightful too.