This is an extraordinary property tucked up in the hills just above Gaiole , a small town in Tuscany. We have been here now several times and I have strongly recommended to friends and family as an ultimate destination . Rooms are simply charming and immaculate ; they are attended to with great care ; many look out over vineyards with a backdrop of the Tuscany hillside.
What distinguishes Castello di Spaltenna is the service as virtually every need, question and request is addressed with professional and genuine concern and attention : from directions to next destination , recommendations for dinners out , help with luggage , to hiking routes etc.
Staff must receive careful training as queries and requests are always responded to with clarity, speed, and efficiency .
Any room for improvement ? We are very seasoned travelers and notice issues at properties from concrete cleanliness( not an issue at all at Castello di Spaltenna) to more subtle problems or annoyances. The restaurant at this hotel is exquisite if not a bit fastidious ; seriously, this is Tuscany and it is 90 degrees at 8 PM and the staff at the outdoor restaurant are still wearing full suited garb ? The pool is very chilly , OK, deal with it ; you get used to it and it is refreshing after a minute given the summer heat.
The number of families with very small children ( as in 1 to 3 years ostensibly ) is increased since our last visit and it changes the vibe at meals ( high chairs , strollers etc ) and at poolside .
There is no food service in between 2:30 PM and dinner ( 8 PM) so could not get a salad after coming back from a long hike in the mountains . They offer a few sandwiches in the bar but a salad is not possible as one staff person noted "the bread is no longer fresh as it was served at lunch ". OK - some people must need very fresh bread- we went to down to the plaza 5 minutes away for a caprese salad but this seemed like a ridiculous scenario.
Lastly, the wi-fi still is fair and the reception is best at the front desk. The staff attribute the problem to thick stone walls but we have stayed in 12th century restored properties all around Italy now and new technology has fixed router issues and bandwidth issues. The staff realize this is an issue and it is unimagineable that all of the international clients go off the grid so perhaps others will raise as an issue.
Castello di Spaltenna is a magical property and should be visited by those lucky enough to be able to read a newspaper ( or Kindle or iPad) in the garden of this lovely property while being looked after by such gracious staff