Il Borgo di Villa Bossi-Pucci is located just 25 minutes from Firenze (Florence), yet is a world-away from city life.
In late October 2004, Edward F. Nesta and I drove from Firenze to the Tuscany countryside. (Read our article on Firenze and uscany in our Destinations section.) Getting out of Firenze, through its winding narrow streets could be a bit intimidating to some, but Edward, an ex-open wheel car racer, enjoyed the challenge. Successfully navigating the winding roads we were awestruck with the panoramic views of the vineyards, the rolling hills, olive trees, and the round haystacks that dotted the countryside. We pulled up to the impressive gate, pressed the buzzer, the gates opened and Alessandro Guerrieri, General Manager warmly welcomed us to Il Borgo.
Il Borgo di Villa Bossi-Pucci, built in 2002 on the historic 17th century Villa Bossi-Pucci estate, consists of 19 residences made up of nine 1-bedroom units, nine 2-bedroom units and one 3-bedroom unit. There is a quaint chapel on the grounds, olive trees, 300-year old Cyprus trees, and vineyards on the park-like estate. For exercise, guests can use the swimming pool, play ping-pong or just stroll through the Il Borgo grounds or into the small village. There is also a covered barbecue area, where guests can dine al fresco.
We stayed in a spacious 2-bedroom unit with a combination kitchen, dining area and living room. There was a refrigerator, stove, dishwasher and stocked cabinets with china and glassware. There was a desk and chair in the living area with a comfortable sofa and chairs to watch the television, or curl up by the floor to ceiling fireplace with a book borrowed from the antique bookcase. In addition to the guest bathroom, which had a make-up mirror, walk-in shower, toilet, and bidet, there was another en-suite bathroom in the Master bedroom. There was another television positioned so that we could watch from the comfort of the king bed. There was a safe inside the antique armoire, which was large enough for long-stay guests, as well as robes. In addition, there was also a dresser. Slippers were conveniently located in the bedside stands.
The master bath had a tub/shower combination, a make-up mirror, hairdryer, toilet and bidet. There was an abundance of hotel branded amenities for guests. A nice touch was the waist-high cabinet with drawers to store the hairdryer, toiletries, and other sundry items.
The large second-bedroom had twin beds and a balcony that overlooked the valley and the vineyards, reminding us that we were truly in Tuscany. It was the perfect place to sit and relax and enjoy the sunset.
Breakfast was delivered to our door each morning in a large wicker basket adorned with fresh rosemary. There was a wood table and chairs just outside our door where guests can dine outside, or enjoy their breakfast at the cozy table inside. Each day we looked forward to lifting the pretty linens lining the basket to see what surprise Alessandro had left for us. In addition to our breakfast, each day we would also find a printed page about Chianti, a city we would visit that day, or other Tuscan information. Il Borgo has a full program of activities that guests can participate in which includes all meals, sightseeing with a private driver, and Lessons of Tuscany, which are classes in Chianti wine, Art History, Cooking, Ceramics, Photography, Watercolors and even Italian. We participated fully, which you can read about in our article on Firenze and Tuscany in our Destinations section, as well as our article Chianti Classico Tasting in Tuscany in our Wine Cellar section.
Although you are away from the hustle and bustle of Firenze, you never feel removed, as there is a comfortable library room for guests to use with a fireplace, complimentary Internet access, as well as bookshelves lined with Tuscany Guidebooks, Art books, and novels. In the event of rain, there are enough Il Borgo umbrellas to keep you dry. On a sunny day, it is very relaxing to take a book and sit in one of the lounge chairs outside. When you are ready to explore, Chianti vineyards are conveniently located close by, Pisa and Lucca are only 1 hour away, Siena is 40 minutes away and the medieval city of San Gimigiano is only 30 minutes away.
Coming in late 2005, Il Borgo di Villa Bossi-Pucci will be joined by the opening of the historic Villa Bossi-Pucci as a luxury hotel, providing even more opportunity to experience Tuscany. I guess we will just have to return in 2005.
© January 2005. Luxury Experience www.LuxuryExperience.com. All rights reserved.