Based upon the photos and descriptions online, our group of 12 selected Borgo dei Sensei for a week's stay in Tuscany. When we arrived we found that the touted amenities that were one reason we chose this particular property were an extra charge. Don't believe the advertising: "aromatherapy" was actually unpleasant smells throughout the villa; the pool area was unmaintained, and the pool algae-covered and sickly-looking, with the surrounding deck area very unkept and unclean; the "hot tub" was actually an inflatable bubble of some kind with no instructions on operation and with probably unmaintained and unclean water; many more discrepancies with the online description and photos also existed.
Cobwebs hung throughout the villa and, in my bedroom, bugs which had been smashed on the wall (and left there by the "cleaning" crew). We had a half of a roll of toilet paper per bathroom, two skimpy towels per person per bedroom, and broken screens in the windows which let in the mosquitos which were abundant and voracious. We were unable to eat dinner in the outside dining area because of the mosquitos. We were only able to sit outside in the early morning or late at night which was a shame because the villa was very dark except in the inside dining room. The grounds were unkept and overgrown. A gardener did come one day in the middle of our stay to mow the overgrown weeds and lawn.
Wildlife was very interesting: we had a lovely cat who must live at the villa who hung around for handouts, wild boars in the woods behind our room which loudly grunted and rooted all night long, and wasps in at least one bedroom which threatened one of us who was allergic to wasps.
There were no instructions on the use of the various kitchen and other appliances, no matches in the kitchen, nor enough dish towels to handle the needs of kitchen use. Our bedroom door did not lock and with only 2 keys for the outside doors of the villa, one for each side, and one gate key, we did not have the security or convenience which was necessary.
Our on-arrival first impressions that the villa was dark and uninviting, musty and unused, and unclean and unkept did not change during the week's stay. Although the villa is beautifully decorated, it was without adequate lighting and amenities to make it comfortable and inviting.
Our group of 12 friends had a good time because we were together, but because some members of the group had had previous positive experiences with renting Italian villas, our expectations were not met by this villa. What a disappointment!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Immersed in the beutiful surroundings of Tuscany's landscape, the Borgo dei Sensi Estate embraces his guests on an elegant, homely and relaxing stay. All our passion, our experience and our hospitality culture have been used to create a little world where everything, every detail contributes in relaxing and wellfeeling our guests. Inside the XI Century Villa we created an exclusive SPA where luxury is water joined by quietness, privacy and a timeless dimension ... more less