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Castelletto di Montebenichi
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Villa Giusterna(Montebenichi)
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All reviewsthe ownertiny villageout of the waytuscan countrysideoverlooking the valleyoff the beaten pathbed and breakfastmany placeswine tastingbeautiful propertywrite a reviewamazing breakfastmarcocastlemuseumhillbarbara
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Reviewed December 12, 2012

The hotel is very beautiful from the outside and almost like staying in a Museum on the inside, filled with Antiques etc. The Hotel was a perfect location for our friends Wedding at Casa Cornacchi. The Hotel was extremely quiet throughout our 3 night stay, the first night we were the only guests staying. The rooms could do with slightly updating especially the Air-conditioning which hardly cooled the room down. We thought the Mini-Bar and free drinks that you could help yourself to in the Lounge was a lovely touch. The pool area is in a lovely position with great views, unfortunately I got bitten all over in the couple of hours I spent there even though I had sprayed myself with the complimentary repellent, which is available in the changing rooms. This of course is not the fault of the owners, but maybe the time of year so we didn't spend anymore time by the pool throughout of our stay which was a real shame. Would I stay again - probably not as it was a bit too remote for us with just one small restaurant within walking distance, but if you like total peace and tranquillity you will probably love it.

  • Stayed: August 2012, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Tinaarena
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 16, 2012

We stayed in the castle for a short two days and we will never forget it. The second floor is dedicated to the owners' world art collection, comfortable couches, a free bar and a large music collection for the guests' pleasure. After a fun Chianti wine tour by Barbara, this became our rest area before dinner. Although you can go to restaurants nearby throughout Tuscany, we chose the restaurant in Montebenichi, the tiny castle town with only 30 residents. It serves great food for less than $35 per person. There are gorgeous views and sweet smelling air and much quiet. Perfect!

  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled with family
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Thank karen B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 12, 2012 via mobile

My wife and I stayed here in a junior suite for 3 nights as part of our honeymoon. Its ideally situated to visit the chianti region as well as some of the other wine areas of Tuscany.

My wife immediately on arrival fell in love with the hotel and possibly the owner Marco! He gave us a quick tour and told us to explore all the rooms of the castle were free to walk around in. His gardens and pool were also beautiful and the views from the roof top patio were amazing and the best place to enjoy a nice bottle of wine.

The best part of this castle/town is that its so small there is no store, just one family run restaurant (delicious), and there's only 1 road in and out.

If you're looking for peace and quiet in the country this is your spot. Also the cooking f classes offered by Barbara one of the local residents in her house is not to be missed! Less hands on than some but her mom makes the best Ragu sauce.

Can't wait to return!

  • Stayed: October 2012
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Thank bgarson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 21, 2012

We stayed at the castle for two nights during a trip to Tuscany. The owners and the place were so welcoming - everything was wonderful from the breakfast per your request to the super relaxing pool and grounds. The dinner reccomendations were very helpful (they booked us at a Michelin star restaurant) and we felt so at home while staying there.

Stayed: August 2012, traveled as a couple
Thank Orly S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 21, 2012

Previous reviews pretty much say it all: the only unfavourable one is from someone who never even stayed in the establishment. This is beyond doubt a five blob establishment, with the best furnished and decorated public rooms I have ever seen. I do have a couple of additional observations though.

Marco is an amazing resource, which should be taken full advantage of. He is totally a can-do kind of guy, who seems to love solving problems (immediately), whether they be things that don't work (like our bedside lamps, which he ended up replacing entirely) or advice and reservations for dinner or detailed accounts of tourist attractions. He has clearly eaten frequently at all the restaurants on his recommended list and can match up your tastes with their offerings. He has a huge library, with a lot of tourism books, and anything he doesn't know, he will immediately go on the web to research. He has homes in Venice and Florence (and came originally from Florence) so his areas of expertise are not limited to Chiantishire. He was in the breakfast room every morning we were there, looking for ways to help his guests (as was Paola, who shared his direct and easy manner with all comers). This is clearly a man who has found his calling.

A special treat came in the form of the bats that came out every evening to help control the insect population. They were not intrusive (so no worries if you don't like bats) but were a real pleasure if you do. Going up to the terrace after dark allows you to see the stars with a lot less light pollution than you get in town while you can just make out the occasional (relatively large) bat flitting past.

One thing to watch out for is the fact that his credit card system presents the notorious option to pay in your home currency (in our case, dollars) or in Euros. If you pay in dollars, they do the conversion for you; if you pay in Euros, your own bank or credit card company does the conversion (and charges whatever commission is part of your arrangement). The rule of thumb here is to pay in Euros, because your own people are almost certainly going to give you the better deal. For example, I was offered the option of paying either 1224 Euros or $1658. I chose the Euro option and my bank ended up taking $1612. The difference is less than 3%, but it is never fun feeling that you have been had. Marco told me that he gets the same amount no matter which option you choose, so he doesn't really care what you do.

The other thing that can be a bit irritating (although I didn't remember to raise it with Marco) is that the Wi-Fi disconnects on a regular and fairly frequent basis, requiring you to re-enter the log-in and password surprisingly often. I can't imagine that it would make much of a difference to the hotel if they changed this and left users logged in till they logged out or shut down.

But these are really minor points from an obviously stingy perspective (although that aspect of my personality was really cheered up by the free mini-bar and complimentary bottle of wine in the room and the free wet bar in one of the public rooms - an approach which I found refreshing and endearing). The hotel as a whole is an experience not to be missed. We stayed in the deluxe room La Torretta, which apparently had the best views from its window; but our brief tour made me think that Bernardino (across the corridor) would have been a better choice. The view was also very good and the room, at least from the outside, looked even nicer. Some of the mini-suites have kitchen facilities which might come in handy for certain kinds of holidays, especially considering the considerable distance to the nearest shop.

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Tom10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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