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Ever Fancied Sleeping in a Tree House? (take 2)

Following on from the article 'Ever Fancied Sleeping in a Tree House?', further consideration of tree house accommodations, ranging from rustic to luxurious, which combine comfort with the excitement of a nature retreat.

Casa Barthel; Florence, Italy

Casa Barthel is an architect-designed tree house built from wood and iron with huge glass windows through which guests can admire the surrounding landscape. Located in the grounds of a family owned old stone villa, it is an ideal launch pad for exploring Tuscany. The tree house sits on stilts and overlooks the Tuscan countryside, with extensive views over family owned olive groves to Florence’s skyline.

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The tree house has access to three hectares of olive groves and vines, a kitchen garden, dining veranda, wood oven and barbeque, tennis court and small swimming pool. If visiting at the correct time of year, guests may have opportunity to join the family as they harvest their olives. The cabin itself is a sunny space, decorated with pieces hand-picked by the artistic owner and has chalkboard walls bearing greetings from the host family. Compactly built amongst the pines, it is furnished with a queen size canopy bed, wood burning stove and small kitchen, with an oversized rain shower and WC discreetly hidden away behind the bedroom.

Bivouac Dans Les Arbres; Macconnens, Switzerland

A most unusual concept in tree accommodation, for those who want to be at one with nature in a peaceful riverside setting. The bivouacs are small tents which are suspended from the branches of trees and rest a few meters from the ground on little plinths. Nature lovers will enjoy sleeping in these tree pods, (bring your own sleeping bag and torch) which promise a refreshing camping experience unlike any other. Although the tents are basic, there are showers and toilets on site, and a dormitory is available for nights when the weather is just too bad to contemplate being ‘under canvas’. Cooking is done in covered barbeques areas, for which firewood is provided, and there is a picnic area for eating. Guests are invited to explore the surrounding forest and its flora and fauna barefoot with the owner, who has a passion for nature.

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Tree House Hotel; Zentendorf, Germany

Artist Jürgen Bergmann likes big, colourful, crazy things made of wood and, given free rein to recreate his childhood dreams, he crafted an unusual amusement park at the most easterly part of Germany on the German-Polish border. Themed around artistic wood design, the Kulturinsel Einsiedel is home to an unusual accommodation option which was arguably the first German tree house hotel. Hidden between the leaves at a height of between 8 to 10 metres, each of the nine two-storey tree house dwellings is rustically furnished, with brightly coloured interiors, uneven walls, angled windows and a balcony. Connected by intertwining wooden footbridges, they are well equipped with a sitting area, sleeping alcove and toilet, and three cabins also having private shower facilities. Each individually themed according to regional myths of trolls and fairy folk, rooms are alternatively described as quaint, dreamy and magical. The resort has everything that fantasy lovers need for an unforgettable fun experience. It has the look and feel of a real life mystical world where guests of all ages can get in tune with their inner troll.

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