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“Stupendo!”
Review of B&B Ponte a Nappo

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B&B Ponte a Nappo
Ranked #29 of 68 San Gimignano B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed June 24, 2012

We decided to make San Gimignano our base for a week so we could travel around Tuscany and explore Siena, Lucca, Pisa and Florence from here. Ponte a Nappo was the best location for us to do all of this and being a renovated farm house, there was ample parking and no problems with security.
From the moment we arrived and were met by Andrea and Francesco (the sons), we knew we were going to love this place. Ponte a Nappo is an idyllic place to stay, just outside the city walls of San Gimignano, but close enough to hear the tolling bells and the drums when the city is in Fiesta. To reach San Gimignano is a leisurely 15 minute stroll up a gently sloping unpaved road, where the wild flowers almost reach out to greet you and the Tuscan countryside takes your breath away.
Carla (the mother) is a FANTASTIC cook and does so for all in-house guests a couple of times a week for dinner and will also cook you lunch daily (by request). Dinners are 4 courses and are approx €25 per person which includes a bottle of house wine per couple, which we found to be very good value. The food is home grown and cooked with love and you can really sense that. Andrea is a proud wine maker and doesn’t take too long to tell you that his wine has won awards! They also produce honey and it is to die for... We bought some and have carried it back to Australia – it is THAT good! The B & B itself has all the mod-cons that holiday makers like (Wifi, Satellite TV, Air-Con, Swimming Pool, etc) and is a very lovely and tranquil place to stay.
We opted to take Nespolo - the 2 bed roomed apartment - and it was very comfortable. It consists of a large ensuite queen bedroom on the ground floor, which had fantastic views across the swimming pool and out to the extensive stretches of vineyards and olive groves. Into a good sized living room, kitchen and dining room, all fully equipped and everything in working order. From here, upstairs, there is a mezzanine level which has another queen bedroom with ensuite bathroom and overlooks the living/dining area.
This was one of the BEST places we stayed on our Italian Tour and what made it so special?
Firstly, the location. You cannot beat this (but I recommend that you have a car).
Secondly, the charm, warmth and friendliness of Carla, Andrea and Francesco and their wives. Francesco speaks brilliant English and Carla understands German, Spanish, French and English, but replies in Italian! Andrea speaks pretty good French, and is his preferred second language, but can speak English if you speak to him slowly! They are just a lovely, lovely family and treat all the guests as part of their extended family.
Thirdly, Ponte a Nappo itself. It only houses 20 guests and when we were visiting there were around 16 guests and even so, remained calm and still had a sense of seclusion. You can tell that renovations have been done to the farm house and they are great. The gardens are well tended and the amount of vegetables and herbs that Carla brings into her cooking from the garden is just mouth wateringly good!
Would we go back? You betcha!!

Room Tip: If there are 3 or 4 of you travelling together or a family, Nespolo (the apartment) is ideal.
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  • Stayed: June 2012, traveled with friends
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1  Thank CatNeen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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61 - 67 of 151 reviews

Reviewed November 3, 2011

We stayed with Carla and her sons in October, 2011. What a view! Absolutely incredible! The B&B is so close to San G that you can walk into town. It is uphill all the way, however. This place is a little paradise--in every direction from the patio where breakfast is served you see wonderful vista. Our room was in the back, as requested, with a picture postcard view of San G. To add to the enjoyment of the farm, the breakfast was the tastiest and most enjoyable of our 2 weeks in Italy. Carla is a wonderful baker and her croissants were so light they melted in your mouth. Every item on the buffet was delicious. Sorry we had to leave.

Room Tip: All the rooms have a great view; we preferred looking at San Gimignano.
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  • Stayed: October 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank barramary
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 23, 2011

We stayed at the Ponte a Nappo for a week in early October. The place is amazing! The view from the pool is absolutely magical, with a view of San G on one side and the Tuscan country side on the other that is right out of a post card. It truly is just a km. into town and it is a nice 15 minute walk that is very enjoyable especially after a nice dinner (don't forget your flash light as the walk is on an unlit gravel country road). Our room was large and very clean. The breakfast is amazing with the bruschetta, ham and cheese being a wonderful way to start the day. Francesco was also very helpful with suggestions for restaurants in San G and driving and parking instructions for our day trip into Florence.

San G. is also an amazing place. One of the most unique in all of Tuscany. It is also well situated if you have a car and want to do some touring of the hill towns, Siena, chianti etc...

Francesco and Andrea also have properties in town so make sure you double check which property you want before booking.

Room Tip: If you choose a room in town, it can be difficult to access the free parking and you may have to use...
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  • Stayed: September 2011, traveled with friends
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1  Thank JandH53
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 13, 2011

We spent 3 nights at Ponte A Nappo, a beautiful location at the foothills of the town of San Gimignano, we found Francesco to be very unwelcoming said he was too busy to pick us up when we rang him, when we arrived he & his brother didnt help us with our bags. We found the rooms to be nicely decorated, but there were absolutely no utensils in the kitchen whatsoever & the beds were very hard. We were surprised that there were no brochures about the town in our room. We decided to walk into town at 6pm to have dinner in town & Francesco suggested 2 restaurants but found both restaurants did not open until 7.30pm. Breakfast was very disappointing, just adequate. We were excited about our first day seeing the sites of San Gimignano, we went to ask for advice from Francesco, he was very unhelpful, said if we didnt have a car there was not much to do, we asked about a walk in the countryside, but he could not suggest any, we asked about wine tours he said the tours were 80 euros each, we found out later there were 2 free wine tours from the town & they were surprised he had not told us about them. On the second day we asked his advice on hiring a car, he found there was one available in town, his mother was going in to town & he asked her to drop us off, but she said no, when we finally found car hire place, car was gone. We found our own wine tour which was absolutely lovely & we explored the lovely city. We would definitely not stay there again & we have very unhappy memories of our first visit to Tuscany which I had been dreaming about for so long.

  • Stayed: September 2011, traveled with family
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1  Thank Linda K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 2, 2011

We spent 5 nights at the farmhouse, arriving at 4.00pm. The family were very welcoming and apologized for the Italian bureaucracy by which they were governed. Our bags were carried to our room, which was beautiful with stunning views. A delicious bottle of wine and a bowl of olives served on the stunning terrace, completed our first evening. Breakfast, consisting of a wonderful Tuscan buffet, including a choice of cereals, yoghourts and croissants, meats, cheeses and bruschetta followed by 2 types of croissants and various cakes all served on the terrace started the day. Francesco was very helpful poring over the map of about where to go and what to see. Carla served a delicious impromptu supper for us one evening on the terrace and gave us a lift up to her favourite restaurant another evening. All in all a wonderful time in a lovely b&b with delightful hosts in a stunning location. A must to experience.

Room Tip: We preferred the farmhouse but made friends with a Polish couple who were staying in San Gimignano a...
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  • Stayed: September 2011, traveled with family
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Thank Faith A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 24, 2011

We spent 3 nights at Ponte a Nappo about a 15 minute walk up a hill to San Gimignano. The website gives great information about the rooms and we had selected the "white room" with a view of San Gimignano from our window. We hadn't expected the view to be as ideal as it was!
In every direction the views are magnificent - with rolling hills of vineyards, olive trees, and a few scattered houses. Yes, it's an uphill, 15 minute walk along a dirt road to get to San Gimignano, but that's the real local countryside. We wanted the peacefulness and beauty of the country but also wanted proximity to a city - this was the ideal spot! The room had a fridge so we took advantage of the gorgeous patio beside the swimming pool, bought some cheeses, bread, fruit, wine at the large supermarket right near the San Gimignano gate, and enjoyed a wonderful picnic lunch.
The hotel is owned by Carla and although she doesn't live there, she was at the hotel every day - as was Francesco, Carla's son, whose English is terrific. Francesco gave us good information about where to buy groceries, and directions to places we wanted to visit. We should have paid more attention to his instruction on how to find the hotel. If you see the COOP big supermarket you are very close to the road that goes down to the hotel.

Carla and her family, including 2 lovely grandchildren, were often there, and we felt as though we were like guests staying in a rural Italian home!

  • Stayed: August 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank ArleneToronto
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 26, 2011

Let us start with the big positives - after 2 weeks of touring Tuscany, we still could not imagine a more picture-perfect location than this. The house lies a few hundred metres from the city walls of San Gimignano, so that the city is silhouetted against the skyline above the B&B, with, on all other sides, almost ludicrously pretty countryside of rolling hills covered in vines and olives. Also there is a lovely pool with immaculately kept gardens around so that there is plenty of room to move a variety of high quality loungers, deck-chairs and sun-umbrellas around a range of patio, lawn and orchard areas. Very spacious, very pleasant.

So far so good - so why the 2* review for what sounds like a 5* property?

The answer is the attitude of the owners, which appears to be to treat visitors as somewhere between a nuisance and an intruder on their property and their time.

We arrived on a scorching hot afternoon (40 degrees C), having e-mailed in advance to confirm our arrival time, as the B&B requests. We arrived to find no-one to greet us. We waited 40 minutes in boiling heat, trying to contact the owners by mobile phone, and also receiving assistance from some of their Italian friends who were round the pool and who also tried to contact them for us, to be told that they would be there in '5 minutes' - they weren't.

We accept that accidents like this happen. However, when the son of the owning family eventually arrived, his opening words were 'I need your passports', rather than 'I'm very sorry, I was delayed' which, in the circumstances, might have been more appropriate.

This might seem like a relatively minor incident, but it is absolutely symptomatic of how guests were treated during their stay. We were told when we checked in that there is a bar -'just ask one of the staff if you want something', but the staff lock up and disappear for hours at a time to look after their other properties so, to me, that isn't a bar. Nor is their usually anyone to ask about any other query you might have.

There is a menu for lunch, but no prices, or any indication of when it is served.

There is NO information about the town in the rooms or in the house, which seems like a major omission for a lodging 1000m from a world heritage site.

There was a safe in our room, but no indication of how to get a key for it.

In summary, there is an almost total lack of information about where you are and how things work. This is fine if there is someone around to ask questions of - but there usually isn't. When we did occasionally find someone to ask even the simplest question of, we felt as if we were regarded as a nuisance.

Overall, this could be a truly idyllic and exceptional spot but, with the attitude of the current staff, we felt uncomfortable and unwanted and it really took the shine off our stay, so that we are hesitant to recommend it to others. .

A message to the people who run the place - either provide information to your guests about your location and the way you work or 'shock horror' actually find time to talk to them. They want to appreciate the lovely place where you live and, if you take some time to spend with them, both sides will benefit from the experience.

Some other relevant facts.

The Ponte e Nappo is about 1km (1/2 mile) walk up a dusty, hilly lane to San Gimignano. We (50 and 60 years) found this to be a 15 minute walk and very pleasant even in very hot sunshine and did it every day, sometimes twice. Note, though, that you won't want to walk it if you are less mobile, in high heels, or wearing black clothing.

Bedrooms have air-conditioning and are reasonably roomy, although with relatively little storage space (1 wardrobe, no drawers). Bedrooms actually look better than the photos on the website. Very well-fitted and equipped bathrooms. There is a small fridge in the room, but no glasses, plates, or cutlery.

The one bit of info you actually find in your room is that breakfast is from 8:30-10:00 and is a very civilised affair on the roomy, shady patio, with a decent choice of cold cuts, cakes and breads, .

  • Stayed: August 2011, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank robini
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about B&B Ponte a Nappo

Address: Via Vecchia 66 | Localita Ponte a Nappo, 53037, San Gimignano, Italy
Phone Number:
Location: Italy > Tuscany > Province of Siena > San Gimignano
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #29 of 68 B&Bs / Inns in San Gimignano
Price Range: $116 - $286 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Welcome to Busini Rossi Carla Holiday, the bed and breakfast of San Gimignano that offers 9 options of great prestige, scattered between the countryside and the historical centre of a wonderful UNESCO World Heritage hamlet. From the olive trees, the vineyards, and the swimming pool of the Ponte a Nappo country house, to the medieval charm of Palazzo Tortoli a short walk from the beautiful towers: rooms and apartments equipped with every comfort, finely furnished to preserve the authentic taste of a holiday in the heart of Tuscany. A truly magical bed and breakfast of San Gimignano where you can enjoy an experience rich in art, history and culture, home cooking and fine wines, relaxation, sun, and nature. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
b&b Ponte a Nappo Hotel San Gimignano
Bed And Breakfast Ponte a Nappo
B&B Ponte a Nappo San Gimignano, Italy - Tuscany

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