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“Experience Extraordinary”

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Castello Banfi - Il Borgo
Ranked #1 of 17 Hotels in Montalcino
Certificate of Excellence
Philipsburg, St. Maarten-St. Martin
Level 6 Contributor
135 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 56 helpful votes
“Experience Extraordinary”
Reviewed October 24, 2013

My wife and I had the pleasure of spending two nights at Il Borgo at Castello Banfi. We were able to visit the winery, taste the wonderful wines of Banfi, and enjoy several memorable meals...all on the property.
Our room was fantastic! For anyone traveling to or through Tuscany this is a must do. We are sure you will find it "enchanting".

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank John L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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406 reviews from our community

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Chicago
Level 6 Contributor
285 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 238 helpful votes
Reviewed October 24, 2013

For real, this place is heaven on earth.

Expensive? Hell, yes.

Worth it? Incredibly, yes.

I'm a low-maintenance guy who usually goes for comfort over fancy frills at hotels. But when my girlfriend saw pictures of Castello Banfi online and I saw her smile, I had to make an exception.

At $900/night, this was going to be our total splurge day in Italy.

We showed up at 4 p.m. and got a tour of the winery. It was during the short harvest period, so we watched as workers picked the best-of-the-best grapes for the most expensive wine.

The tour guide broke down the history of the winery and the family and I eventually tuned out because, hey, wine barrels I can take pictures of!

Speaking of photos, this place is sickeningly photogenic. It's like Tom Cruise had a baby with Katie Holmes or something.

After our tour, we checked into the hotel. There are only 14 rooms here, each one is sort of its own private villa. We got a welcome glass of sparkling wine and the woman at the front desk took us on a tour of the grounds. Everything here is gorgeous.

There's a wine store where you can pick up a ton of wine on the super-super cheap. (Shipping six bottles back to the U.S. was something like € 66, so we just shoved 'em in our suitcase and prayed.)

But let's get to the restaurant for a moment.

Some of the best food I've ever eaten in my life. We ordered pasta that we literally ate one noodle at a time. It was that good. That is not an exaggeration. That's a real thing that really happened.

Service at the restaurant was out of this world. It's one of those places where *they* put the napkin on your lap. And if you get up to use the restaurant, they come by with tongs, remove your napkin and place a new one on the table.

It's so old school, the menu they hand to the woman has no prices on it.

I had a chicken "stew" that was just a mouthwatering chunk of chicken exploding with flavor.

We had dessert. The chocolate one is a little cake that explodes with molten chocolate when you touch it with your spoon.

The food was so good, we stuck around for lunch the next day. Duck ravioli with carrot cream sauce? Phenomenal.

There are only so many words I can burn on one of the greatest days of my life. But here are the facts.

1) It's impossible to find. GPS is useless.
2) It's ungodly expensive.
3) It is worth every single penny and the inevitable frustration of getting totally, completely lost on the way.

When we were left alone in our room after the tour, my girlfriend started simultaneously laughing and crying, she was so happy.

You must go here if you are in Tuscany. If you can't afford the hotel, at least grab dinner. If you can't afford dinner, at least visit the wine shop. If you can't afford the wine shop (which is crazy, since they sell bottles for around $10), at least drive by and see the castle from a distance and swoon.

Seriously one of the highlights of my life. I'll never forget it.

(Guys: If you're looking for a place to propose, do it here at sunset. It's a guaranteed "yes.")

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
5 Thank BowmanInc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sao Paulo, SP
Level 3 Contributor
11 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed October 20, 2013

Have you ever been to a Hotel where they think about everything you need ? And on top of that you have a 1000 years old castle and a view of the wineries of the Brunellos ? This place is Castelo Banfi, a must stay in Tuscany. Got there late from the travel and the reservation at the restaurant was made, the room was ready and when I got to the room, the bags were there. Wanted to visit the castle at midnight after dinner, it was opened, with a collection of glasses from B.C.. Wanted to go for a bike ride and the bikes were there, with fresh water bottles complimentary. Wanted to go for the pool, towels and water available complimentary and the Tuscany view....muuuuust go

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Antonio B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mukilteo, WA
Level 4 Contributor
42 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed October 13, 2013

My husband and I had the pleasure of staying here for three nights in September, 2013. We were in Italy for a total of three weeks and this was our big splurge on the trip. Yes, it's expensive. But we booked a classic suite and were amazed by the room--actually three rooms: the enormous bathroom, bedroom and a living room area. It was beautiful and so luxurious. We ate at the restaurant two out of three nights and the food was exquisite. Every person working on the grounds was absolutely professional, friendly and gracious. The night we arrived we had some difficulty navigating through the gates and finding the office, and the restaurant manager actually came out to personally guide us to the right place. We met Pamela Forliani, one of the owners of Banfi, and she too was just wonderful. She gave us directions to local restaurants and attractions and gave us a bottle of dessert wine. All in all an incredible experience. Don't miss the glass museum, located on the grounds in the castle. And of course see Bernadette in the tasting room!

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank ToastingCora
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed October 10, 2013

We were treated like royalty at this beautiful castle estate. The welcome by Andrea was so special and genuine, that it would have been enough to win our hearts, but it was just the beginning of our moment of heaven on earth. A beautiful scene in every direction that you could look. Everyone was kind and helpful. A stunning, spotless room. More food and wine than any one stomach should enjoy. Peaceful, stress free, wonderful in every way. You never want to leave. The best.

Room Tip: Room 27 is a two bedroom suite fit for a queen and big enough for her entire kingdom. The bathroom...
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
1 Thank ParadiseNotLost
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boston
Level 4 Contributor
46 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed August 31, 2013

This is our second stay in the great great hotel. I wrote all the superlatives the first time but it was great to see that a year later it provided even a better experience - we were warmly welcomed back by Andrea and his great staff and felt like old acquiantances coming back to heaven...

We will be back again!

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank JARBoston
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 3 Contributor
16 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed August 26, 2013 via mobile

This was our second trip to banfi - the first being last year, as part of our honeymoon - and we worried that we might have built it up too much in our heads. But actually it was even more stunning and even more relaxing a place to stay than we remembered!

The room we had was not a suite but it was very very spacious and was beautifully decorated (as was the very spacious bathroom). It felt like our own Tuscan villa. The breakfast was lovely - a selection of local cheeses, hams, fruit, cereal and then an a la carte hor breakfast. The omelette di giurno was always delicious.

We spent most of our time by the pool, wine tasting or eating dinner at the restaurant - which kept my husband and I very happy. The views around the rooms, the castle and the pool are just beautiful - classic rolling hills, and you are in the middle of the vineyards. The wine is excellent and there is quite a range of styles (and vintages) within the banfi collection, though note that you cannot drink any other wines except a few champagnes there!

The food at the restaurant is amazing, although perhaps 3 nights in a row is enough! The menu does change and the waiters are great and very friendly, but the atmosphere inside can feel a little overbearing. So if you are staying a week then maybe mix it up a bit - I think there are other local restaurants you can try.

I'm surprised that someone commented that the service was only ok. We felt like all the staff went out of their way to make sure we had the best possible time... And it was lovely to see a lot of familiar faces from last year - a good sign I think! We are hoping to be back again in the not too distant future.

  • Stayed August 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank S_tweetnothings
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Castello Banfi - Il Borgo

Property: Castello Banfi - Il Borgo
Address: Poggio Alle Mura | Sant'Angelo Scalo, 53024, Montalcino, Italy
Phone Number:
Location: Italy > Tuscany > Province of Siena > Montalcino
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Family Hotel in Montalcino
#1 Romantic Hotel in Montalcino
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Castello Banfi - Il Borgo 5*
Number of rooms: 14
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Luxury Wine Resort in the famous Brunello di Montalcino Wine Region-Extraordinary Countryside Tuscan Experience-Nestled against a Medieval Castle located in the middle of a privately owned 7100 acres Nice&professional staff very knowledgeable of the best attractions of the area-Extremely large bedrooms and bathrooms, both with great views-Very Exclusive Property consisting of only 2 Deluxe Rooms and 12 Suites. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Castello Banfi - Il Borgo Hotel Montalcino
Castello Banfi Il Borgo Montalcino

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