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Saint Friday Cottage, pretty close to the famous Transfăgărășan Road

Created with Sketch. Vâlsănești, Argeș, Romania View on map
Excellent from 4 reviews
100% of guests recommend


Surprisingly, Saint Friday Cottage is 1h 40min drive far from Bucharest A1 exit (excluding Bucharest traffic, of course 🙂 ) and pretty close to the famous Transfăgărășan Road, in Vâlsan River Natural Reserve.

This 100 years-old house is very close to the forest, surrounded by green hills, orchards and pastures, and it’s also the heart of a small 1 acre (cca. 5000 sq. meters) homestead – inhabited by lambs, ducks, chicken and turkeys (not to mention the tender cats and the big & mild shepherd dog).


Long time ago, the cottage was inhabited by Lisandru and Avida. Nowadays, we – Cristina and Silviu (Lisandru’s great-grandson) take care of it. We are both freelancers – Cristina is an economist, and Silviu – a non-verbal theatre perfomer and M.A. in anthropology. After 12 years of living in Bucharest or wandering outside the country, we’ve had enough of noise, traffic jams and pollution, we got back to the roots and began working here: we renovated our nice and cosy cottage, we started gardening, we planted trees and raspberries, we made jams, jellies and liquors, we started growing poultry and lambs… and we never stopped since then 🙂

We are living here all year long, at the groundfloor, with our 5 & 2 year old children.


Saint Friday Cottage has its name inspired by Romanian folklore tales. So, we try to keep it as a friendly retreat from the urban jungle, a place to smoothly settle down into, a space where you can breath deeply and let yourself overwhelmed by the surrounding green.

The house was built in 1920s by great-grandfather Lisandru, who was a builder – and his team of artisans. It’s a specific Northern Argeș house – made by earth and wood (wattle and daub), with front porch, cellar, frieze and high roof, breezy during summer and warm during winter. After Lisandru and his spouse Avida passed away in the 1990s, the house was not inhabited permanently until 2016 when we excitedly started renovating it.

In order to keep our house’s charm untouched and not to break with tradition, we used a lot of natural materials and old building techniques – the wooden shingles roof, the sand and limestone plaster, the manually crafted unique ceramic tiles, the stoves – and we recycled the wood and kept all the old things that could be kept. Of course, we brought also some necessary modern elements: the fully equipped kitchen, the bathrooms, wi-fi, the heating and water systems, washing machine etc.

Close to the house there is a gazebo wrapped up in ivy, elderberry and grape vine (the place for having breakfast and dinner) the vegetable garden, the greenhouse and the orchard. The orchard is a nice place to take a stroll and drink a good coffee in the morning or a glass of wine in the evening. There are old apple trees and a lot of young trees we planted ourselves – cherry & sour cherry, plums & quinces & sea buckthorn, apples & pears. Also raspberries and currants. Also few kinds of mint and roses. And two old walnut trees. And a trampoline for energetic kids. And from time to time few ducks that walk free around all-day long 🙂 Also a nice treehouse is raised in one of the century-old walnuts in the orchard.

On the side of the orchard there is the poultry yard – where chicken live. In the backyard, close to the forest, there is the sheep pen (they’ll be happy to be fed by hand), another vegetable garden and some rows of young raspberries and blackberries.

The access to all these is made through a secondary gravel road, where chances are high not to see at least one car rolling during the day.


The guest attic is composed by a room with a large roof window (so one can stare at the stars in the bed); a friendly, books & albums stashed open-space that can be used also as an informal workspace, and a private bathroom. Access to the attic is made through a separate entrance and an inside staircase.

The attic can host 4 guests on beds (and, on request, an extra guest on a mattress).


* Upon request, we happily cook breakfast, lunch and dinner – we prefer savoury local recipes, using basic ingredients from our very own land or nearby, which we cook slowly, in cauldrons or cast-iron pots. Not to be missed – we are in the Homeland of Smoked&Pressed Cheese and of Țuică (a mild and flavourful home-made plum brandy). And, by the way, breakfast comes with bio coffee, freshly grinded (we don’t like lousy regular coffee 😉

* The internet connection is fast, good browsing speed (via optic fiber)

* Linens, towels, soap, shower gel etc. – all included.

* One of Silviu’s passions is massage (certified studies, using a professional massage bed). Be it inside home or under the clear blue sky, be it classical relaxing massage or foot massage or even using warm stones – this may be an experience to remember.

* Few bikes available to explore nearby gravel roads, pathways and hills.


*Since we live in Romania’s countryside, it is not uncommon to hear the dogs barking during night and roosters in the morning. For our guests having a quite shallow sleep, perhaps the best solution is using earplugs during night.

*Our children (5 and 2 years old) usually sleep like a log during the night, but once in a while there may be exceptions.

*Since we are surrounded by a natural reserve, it is not uncommon for bugs to sneak into the house from time to time. Still, there are no lethal insects in our region – but if this makes you more comfortable, you can bring your antibug spray.

*We don’t have any patch of perfectly short trimmed lawn or perfect plain piece of land, but we enjoy hundreds of wild plants, we don’t spray dangerous chemicals on our vegetables and trees just to make them look big and shiny. Beauty is everywhere here and we just try to keep the natural pace of all things around – which may not always resemble a Pinterest or Instagram photo.

*Given the drought of this season, the water for shower should be used responsibly.


  • a lot of superb centuries-old churches and monasteries, historical monuments (Robaia, Galeşu, Brădetu, Corbii de Piatră, Mănăstirea Curtea de Argeş, Biserica Olari etc.)
  • less than 1h drive: Poenari Fortress, Vidaru Dam on stunning Transfăgărășan Road; Bâlea Lake (2h drive)
  • two historical towns – Curtea de Argeș – the town of Romania’s Kings (15min drive) and Câmpulung Muscel (40min drive)
  • for hiking: Poienile Vâlsanului, Ghițu Peak (1.622 meters) , Moldoveanu Peak (highest peak of Romania, 2.544 meters – can be climbed and descended in the same day via Nucșoara village and Valea Rea route)
  • for those who are tired of driving: a bunch of local pathways through surrounding forests and hills, hiking or by bike or splashing in the shallow Vâlsan river nearby 🙂

Don’t hesitate to contact us for additional info!

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Bike rental
Children playground
Free parking on premises
Laptop friendly
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Check In 4:00 PM
Check Out 12:00 AM
Hotel Policies

Booking policy

The price shown covers accommodation for 2 guests. For each extra guest, an extra 12 Eur will be discharged. In order to confirm your reservation a payment of 50% of your stay in advance is needed.

Cancellation policy

Cancellation at least 2 weeks before arrival: 50% of advance payment will be refunded. Cancellation at least 1 week before arrival: 25% of advance payment will be refunded.


We enjoy having families with children as guests. Obviously, overseeing the children is the sole responsibility of the parents and attendants. For children over 14 years old, 75% of the adult price will be discharged.


Smoking is allowed anywhere outside.


Pets should be closely supervised in order not to damage anything in the garden, greenhouse, flowers or even poultry. Exceptionally, we can accept a pet sleeping in the house, under strict conditions of cleanliness and protecting the carpets, the furniture and all objects.

Parties or events

Our place is not proper for parties or noisy events.

Other rules

We wish to enjoy the old, unique carpets and rugs as long as possible, so we kindly ask our guests to leave their shoes on the front porch or in the little hallway.
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The guest attic – Entirely (2-4 ppl.)

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Review score

Based on 4 reviews

Traveler rating

Very Good


5 /5
5 /5
5 /5
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5 /5
4 reviews on this Hotel - Showing 1 to 4
Explore the authentic

Bledea Bogdan

In a few words? Best experience ever! But what impressed me the most are the hosts, which make you feel you come to visit your lifetime friends. Even if this is the first time you see them. Everything was perfect, from conditions, to the food(which was amazing) and how we felt in all this time. I personally enjoyed this experience and I will make sure to come back again here soon. Also, there are a lot of places near by to visit.
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Definitely loved the feeling the cottage gave us! Calm, beautiful, relaxing, but also fun. The room is dreamy and the hosts have a unique book collection that only completes the whole image of this place. The food is really good and healthy. If you love cats, this is definitely the place to be! <3 I recommend to get a bike and get lost in the villages around, you will forget all your stress! All in all 10/10 :)
Explore the authentic

Catalina Banuleasa

I loves staying at Silviu and Cristina. They are the most wonderful hosts. The house is full of life and stories, of books (that kind of rare finds but also contemporary must reads). The place, the animals, the surprises, the food, the hidden gems around the house will all make you loose track of time and space. I fully recommend this place, though the extra kilos could be the only reason to stay away for a while:) The food is really good.
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Explore the authentic


Such a great feeling to stay @saint friday! definitely we will go back soon!

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from €35 /night


Silviu M

Member Since 2020

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