Wednesday, October 24, 2012

HOTEL CHECK ITALY, part 16, Villa San Michele

History, views, terraces and lemon trees.

As you wind your way up the narrow country roads and get your first glimpse of Villa San Michele (facade attributed to Michelangelo) you will instantly be impressed. Without doubt it is one of the finest hotels in Florence and has an enviable location overlooking this breathtaking city.

The hotel has been faithfully restored from a 15th century monastery and lies amid immaculate terraced gardens filled with lemon and olive trees. It has a unique dining terrace perching over the valley; and 46 romantic rooms and suites located in the old monastery building or nestled amid the beautiful gardens. Many rooms enjoy spectacular views and each has its own unique style and antique furnishings.

Our terrace, our view, our Garden Suite

We were lucky enough to be given a spacious Garden Suite with private terrace overlooking the city and historical main building. The separate living area is great for those who desire space but we can also recommend the Junior Suites if your budget would prefer.

Afternoon tea, chianti and Tuscan delights

Just ouside our room - what a garden...

As well as spending time wandering through the stunning gardens, we suggest an afternoon tea in the garden enjoying the early evening sun. Relax by the pool ,which is at the highest point of the hotel, or simply unwind with a glass of chianti on your terrace...

The pool - relaxation and views

The Tuscan cuisine served on the hotel terraces is famous throughout Florence, and at weekends you will often find groups of family or friends here treating themselves to a long lunch for a special occasion.

Local life

Of course dining in this luxury hotel is sure to be memorable. But if you hanker for more local life, you may also want to walk up to the village of Fiesole, which is just 20 minutes amble up the slope behind Villa San Michelle. A handful of restaurants and wine bars can be found around the piazzetta and there is also beautiful small church where you can see a magical sunset over Florence. Our concierge made arrangements for the best table in the best (most local) restaurant in the village and we ate like royalty and enjoyed some lively Italian banter between the local diners!

The Renaissance city

Climbing the Duomo for breathtaking views
The complimentary hotel shuttle to Florence is a smooth journey of around 25mins and runs every hour right in to the heart of the city. Absolute must do’s in the city include climbing the Duomo for 360 degree views of the city, wandering through Michelangelo sculptures in Galleria dell'Accadamia to see the famous David, and visiting the Mercator Central - a giant delicatessen style market dedicated to the finest Tuscan food.

How to get to Villa San Michele

20  minutes by car from Florence International Airport, 15 minutes from Firenze railway station

Select added value

A local welcome amenity

The lobby - in the 15th century this was a convent

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