Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

Will you be offering a Gluten Free Week Again?

Yes!  We will be planning gluten free events in the future.  At this time we do not have any scheduled. Once we have specific dates and information we will share here on the website as well as our newsletter and on social media.

Yes!  We will be planning gluten free events in the future.  At this time we do not have any scheduled. Once we have specifics dates and information we will share here on the website as well as our newsletter and on social media.

Are the cooking classes mandatory?

Though participation is encouraged, the classes are not mandatory and you can freely choose which classes you would like to join. We want you to enjoy your vacation here in Tuscany, and use the villa as a home base from which to travel and really experience the beauty of the region.

Can I bring my friends/spouse/family?

Yes! We charge per room, each room indicates the total cost, and indicates the maximum capacity. We have accommodations ranging from family suites to singles. If you have any questions or need assistance booking your room please email or call us at 877 642 0644. All guests are welcome to join the cooking classes of their choice.

Can I keep valuables in my room?

The villa is located on a gated estate with alarm systems in a very safe area. You are responsible for having a valid passport and we recommend you keep it with you when you leave the villa. Jovial is not responsible for any lost items at the villa.

Do I need to be proficient at cooking to attend the course? What if my skill level is basic?

No, you definitely don’t need high-level skills to attend this course. Cooks of every level can enjoy our classes! Carla will take the time to guide you through every class. We will also be providing you with recipes after the classes are over so anyone can enjoy these dishes at home.

Do you cater to vegetarians?

Coming to the villa is like being with family and we respect all food intolerances and special dietary needs and requests. While not all the meals will be vegetarian, alternate options will be made available.

How can I get around?

You are responsible for your own transportation. We recommend you rent a car because the villa is located at the top of a steep hill and is about a 15 minute walk to the train station. A car is more convenient for traveling to local towns and for reaching shops. If you choose to travel by train, you can reach Lucca in about 10 minutes. From the train station in Lucca you will be able to travel to all destinations. We will be happy to arrange taxi service, but reservations should be made with 24 hour notice or we cannot guarantee availability. Please note when scheduling a taxi from the villa you will be charged for the trip to the villa as well as your destination, as the taxi will be coming from Lucca.

Is there free wifi at the villa?

Yes, there is free wifi available at the villa. However, the wifi is not consistent in the bedrooms and is spotty in some of the main rooms downstairs. Check with staff for best places for wifi.

What are your payment terms?

You are required to pay in full at the time of booking with a credit card. We accept MasterCard, Discover, and Visa.

What if I am allergic to something?

Just let us know! All of our guests fill out a questionnaire prior to travel, and we take it very seriously so that we can safely accommodate everyone.

What is the nearest airport?

The nearest airport to Lucca is the Pisa International Airport “Galileo Galilei”, which has a rail station attached and is about 25 minutes from Lucca (operating times are from 5:55 am to 9 pm). There are numerous car rentals available, and you could also go by taxi, which will take roughly 40 minutes.
The other nearest airport is the Florence International Airport “Amerigo Vespucci”. From the airport, you can take a city line bus every thirty minutes to the train station of Santa Maria Novella and then transfer to another line that will take you to Lucca. The total journey will take about 2 ½ hours. Just outside the Florence train station, there is also a bus service to Lucca which takes around 1 hour and 45 minutes, though the quickest option is by taxi.

What is there to do/see in the area?

Lucca, hailed as the “City of 100 Churches,” is full of attractions for everyone. You can start by getting comfortable with the city on foot or by bike with a tour of the 15th Century walls that surround Lucca. From there, you can climb Tower Guinigi for great views, visit some museums or gardens, and pick up something to eat at a gelateria, café, or restaurant like Ristorante All’Olivo or La Buca di San Antonio. Continue on to Piazza San Michele and the Piazza dell’Anfiteatro to see the remnants of ancient Rome, and head down Via Fillungo and Via Santa Lucia for some shopping. Also, don’t forget that on the third Saturday and Sunday of every month, there’s a huge antiques market in Piazza Antelminelli and the streets around the Duomo.
Outside of the city walls, visits to the mountain village of Barga are commonplace, as well as excursions to see the Ponte del Diavolo, or Devil’s Bridge, that has an amusing story and a unique history. Further out, the region of Tuscany provides a perfect opportunity for cycling, as well as hiking in Garfagnana, wine-tasting in the valley’s plentiful vineyards, shopping in Siena, and sight-seeing in Florence. The area is full of stunning landscapes, famous art cities, fascinating museums, great food, and excellent wine, all of which can be accessed easily and inexpensively by train, bus, or car.

What is your cancellation policy?

In the event you have to cancel your trip, we reserve the right to charge a cancellation fee as follows:

  • Up to 90 days prior to departure date: 10% payable
  • Between 30 and 89 days prior to departure date: 25% payable
  • 29 days or fewer prior to departure date: 50% payable

We recommend purchasing travel insurance.

What should I bring?

You will be walking a lot in Italy, so we recommend that you bring a comfortable pair of shoes. As you will be at the villa with a pool, you should also bring a bathing suit. Laundry facilities are provided. Electrical service in Italy is supplied at 220-240 volts/50 hertz, so a converter may be required. We do not have adaptors so you should bring what you need to charge your electronic devices. We strongly recommend that you travel with a cell phone that has coverage in Italy.

What will the weather be like?

The weather in Lucca at the end of May is typically comfortable, ranging in the upper 70’s during the day and getting down to the 50’s at night. It is also possible to get some rain showers, so you might want to bring an umbrella or other rain gear. The weather in early October is usually very comfortable, with temperatures normally in the low 70’s and 50’s at night. The rooms at the villa are both heated and air-conditioned.

What’s included and not included in the price?

Included: Accommodations, daily breakfast, one room cleaning mid-week, cooking classes and meals that follow and a Welcome Dinner to kick off the week. The villa kitchen will be stocked with fresh seasonal fruits, vegetables, eggs, breads, cheeses, wine, and pasta. You are welcome to cook your own meals when cooking classes are not in session or preparation of classes. Not included: Airfare and transfers, ground transportation, meals and entertainment purchased outside of the villa. Personal orders for meat from the local butcher may be placed in the evening for delivery the next day.

Where can I find the current dates and prices for the cooking programs?

You can find the link here.

What time is check in and check out?

Check in is 4pm and check out is 9am.

Gluten Free

No Gluten Free Getaways are being

offered at this time.

Future dates are yet to be determined. 


2022 Dates Coming Soon!