This Relais et Chateau property oozes charm but could use a hefty dose of practicality.
On the positive side, the location is fabulous. The grounds are beautiful and tastefully landscaped, with many fruit trees, lawn areas and walking paths. The hotel overlooks a valley sprinkled with vineyards and orchards, with hills in the distance. There is a fashionable spa, with an indoor/outdoor pool, and also an outdoor pool (which we did not use, as the weather was a bit cool for swimming). The staff was very friendly and helpful, doing their best to accommodate their guests’ wishes. The restaurant is the prize—impeccable service and wonderful food. If you are interested, take the cooking school, where you will learn more than you could anticipate.
In keeping with the name of this hotel, the owner (a lovely lady) has a large falcon (called Leela) which is left outside during good weather. If you are fortunate, as we were, she will present the falcon on her arm. For us, it was an unusual and lovely touch.
On the other hand, there are some practical issues. First, if you are driving, make sure you arrive during daylight (or have the exact address in your GPS—the coordinates are not totally accurate). The last 2.4 kilometers of the drive to Il Falconiere consist of a one-lane road, frequently bordered by a high stone fence. At nighttime, the drive is daunting. Second, the rooms, while charming, lack some practical amenities. Our room (No. 10) was charmingly decorated with period furniture. Ironically, that was part of the problem. The antique armoire was not deep enough for standard size coat hangers. As a result, our hanging garments were cramped when the doors were closed. Moreover, one of my pet peeves is theft-proof coat hangers. I can understand why a one-star hotel might see the need for theft-proof coat hangers, but I would expect that the clientele who can afford to stay at a Relais et Chateau property are unlikely to purloin coat hangers. The bathroom has only one pedestal sink which lacked any storage place for toiletries. There was a small low cabinet which of course my wife took over, leaving me to put my toiletries on a shelf that was no more than 18 inches higher than the floor—not a very comfortable situation. In addition, we could not access wifi from our room, which was a real annoyance. The excuse was that the walls were very thick. In this day and age, the solution would be to upgrade the hotel’s wifi system, as many if not most guests like to be able to access the internet while traveling.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The typical Tuscan villa which dates back to the 17th century was the home of the famous poet Antonio Guadagnoli. Now completely restored and transformed into a countryside Relais, it is part of the prestigious chain Relais & Châteaux, which exuberates the art of hospitality.In the restaurant, in the kitchen, at the reception, dedicated to taking care of the needs of our guests ,we are proud to offer everyday our availability and our specialties, improving them continuously. The art of refining quality is achieved by caring about details that make a difference.An ideal setting for those who love the beauty of the countryside, the atmosphere of the Relais is quaint with characteristic old-fashioned Tuscan charm. The twenty-two rooms are elegantly furnished-each unique in color and décor and reflecting the classic, refined style of important Tuscan homes. A few rooms are in the antique villa, some attached to the villa’s chapel and others in the cottage. All share the view of the magical landscape of the Cortonese countryside and are fully furbished with every modern comfort.La THESAN ETRUSCAN SPA has the goal of reawakening all of your senses through the harmony of the environment and the flavours and tastes of Tuscany.The Etruscan Thesan Spa guides you to discover the true relaxation, with a unique and unrepeatable involving all five senses. A wellness Trail where the two basic elements - water and heat - are skilfully combined with lights, sounds and colours therapeutic to optimize the relaxation. Exclusive for Officina Profumo Santa Maria Novella of Florence. Behind each of our actions is the desire to spark an unforgettable emotion: a recipe with delicate and persistent aromas, a special and rare decoration, the vistas leaving you breathless and astonished, the warm welcome that makes you feel as though you belong.. all of this will take you to the primordial feelings of pleasure. Staying with us will leave you with everlasting memories.The restaurant is on two floors with a glass and wrought-iron conservatory, overlooking the outside dining terrace with its ancient fishpond and rose-clad pergola. The cooking, which is personally supervised by Silvia, with the help of the head Chef Richard Titi, has succeeded in creating new temptations, using original and traditional recipes to create a marvelous cuisineaccompanied by great wines. “Il Falconiere” is situated in a quiet, elevated, rural location amid vineyards and olive groves. It enjoys enviable views of the Val di Chiana to the west, and Cortona, the ancient Etruscan hill town just three kilometers to the south. The Relais is ideally located for short trips to some of the most famous art cities of central Italy, such as Arezzo, Perugia, Siena, Florence and Assisi, all within in an hour’s drive away. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Relais Il Falconiere Cortona
- Relais Il Falconiere Hotel Cortona