This is an absolutely fantastic B&B/agriturismo, with outstanding rooms and an excellent gourmet restaurant. It is in the hills outside of San Vincenzo with stunning views out to the sea and Elba Island. At night, the lights of San Vincenzo and Piambino sparkle in the distance below this hillside retreat. The gardens are lovely, dominated by many fruit trees and herbs, with lavender and rosemary highlighting the scents during our stay. The nicely decorated common spaces and extensive grounds are to be explored, being sure to pay some attention to the four-legged residents (we befriended 2 charming dogs, a couple of horses and 3 donkeys). A lovely and varied buffet breakfast is served each morning in the restaurant or, weather permitting, on the restaurant terrace (it is also possible to have the breakfast delivered directly to your room).
The owners and staff here really understand how to deliver quality service in a professional, thorough and warm way. It is as though the hosts are determined to see that their guests are fully accommodated as if they were old friends, not patrons. This creates a sense of calm that is an absolutely perfect blend with the surroundings. The Poggio Ai Santi website tries to convey this sense of quiet serenity which results from the place, environment, view, and service all coming together as one… but we did not “get it” until we actually experienced it. Very nicely done!
The rooms are at once rustic and modern, with attention paid to the ultimate comfort of the guests. Our room, one of 2 “Royal Suites” in the seaside building was huge with a large and comfortable bed and expansive bath (seriously, the bathroom itself is larger than most hotel rooms in Rome). The bathroom in this room has separate soaking tub and shower, but if neither of those options entice, you can always opt for a hot bath in the cast iron tub on the completely private covered terrace with views out to the coastline and sea far below. The terrace also offers loungers and a small table and chairs set to extend the possibilities for use of this intimate, panoramic outdoor space.
Poggio Ai Santi is in an area of Tuscany that is well known as a beach destination, surely packed with people on holiday during the warm weather months. We found the area to be extremely enjoyable in early October, without the beach crowds to deal with. While the beaches are beautiful (long and wide – great for walking) there are plenty of other things to do in the area. Anyone wanting to explore is rewarded with many nearby options, and even more within a 1 hour drive. There is a wonderful “wine road” very close by that winds through scenic mountain vistas and ancient hilltop villages. The abundant vineyards and olive orchards in this region are producing some of the finest wines currently coming out of Italy, along with outstanding olive oils. Poggio Ai Santi offers such wines and olive oils for sale, as well as other farm products.
San Vincenzo, only 10 minutes drive, is a pretty substantial seaside town with a nice marina and many restaurant options, although the best restaurant in the area is arguably right on site at Poggio Ai Santi. The beaches stretch for long distances both north and south from the town. The southern direction features a very nice wooded park of over 100 hectares (250+ acres) coming directly up to the dunes along much of the beach down to the pretty Gulf of Baratti, which is overlooked by the medieval Populonia castle. The castle is worth exploring if for no other reason than the fabulous photo opportunities – and there are significant historical and archeological sites there as well.
Within about an hour are Pisa (for the obligatory visit to the famous tower), Lucca, and Volterra. Lucca and Volterra are both beautiful and well-preserved ancient Etruscan towns… very different, but each well worth a day of exploration. The great thing about Poggio Ai Santi is that even if you don’t want to venture out, an outstanding holiday can be achieved by just staying put and taking advantage of all this delightful property has to offer.
We think rooms at Poggio Ai Santi are best experienced with windows open, weather permitting – some of the charm is lost when buttoned up tight. However, there are no screens and since this is a natural retreat you almost assuredly will share your space with some insects – a consideration if you are squeamish about such things.
The Royal Suites are fabulous, but if you are going to spend most of your time sightseeing and takin...
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
November 5, 2012
Thanks to our friends from VA...
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We are so happy to achieved our aim and made you happy. Thank you also for all information about the area around, as so many people abroad do not know that Tuscany has also wonderful shores and...an Archipelago, Elba Island being the most known.
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.