We have spent a fair bit of time in this part of Italy and have rarely had a bad experience. Pretty much everywhere you stay, the atmosphere is warm and relaxed. The food and wine are usually top drawer, and the weather is a beautiful finishing touch.
What set Tenuta il Corno apart for us wasn't anything "out of this world" in particular, but rather the seamless coming together of all the small details and experiences that make a stay so special and memorable.
Ironically, we had no intention of staying at Tenuta. We were driving from another agriturismo to the south, heading towards Florence. We had a bit of time on our hands and took the scenic route as it were, even though pretty much all routes around here are scenic, and happened to drive past this place. Don't know why, but we both looked at each other and wanted to turn around and pop in and have a look, so we did. It was about 11.00am so we werent too confident if they would even be open, but open they were. We walked into the reception area which doubles up as their on site shop and were greeted by a very friendly receptionist. The restaurant area appeared to be closed between breakfast and lunch. Tentatively, we enquired about maybe having a coffee and looking around, on which the receptionist warmly invited us in and then ran off and came back a few minutes later with 2 of the nicest cups of coffee we ever had! How did that happen? My fiancee and I are both self confessed coffeeholics and one of our main critisisms, even in Italy, is that the coffee can be a bit hit and miss. Another bemused look at each other followed, and we both knew there and then that we would simply have to come back and stay here proper!
Sure enough, we returned a couple of days later and checked in for a night. The same friendly lady booked us in and showed us to our room. It was spacious and clean, with a kitchenette and a massive bathroom, which to our delight, had a sizeable bathtub. As for the views, well, if you like the traditional Tuscan landscape that we all dream of, then you have it here in every direction as far as the eye can see! Perfect!
We spent a bit of time by the pool which was nice and clean. Our only criticism here was that the loungers weren't the most comfortable in the world, but maybe we are being a bit precious. In the evening we made our way to the restaurant, which is beautifully designed and had that lovely atmosphere where you feel relaxed and at ease. The food was reasonably priced and delicious. As for the wine....well....excellent! Suffice to say we filled the boot of our car with their wine on departure! What I also liked was that locals came to eat here as well, a good sign in my book!
Service: I found a lot of amusement in our waiter. He didn't really speak any english and our italian is pretty poor. What followed was a mixture of arm waving, pointing at the dishes on the menu, and broken italian. My partner got the giggles as a result (like a said, the wine is good!) but the waiter and I were so busy trying to get the order right, we both took a bit of offence towards her childish behaviour! I saw the funny side of it later but I don't think the waiter did, and he always approached our table with obvious trepidation thereafter.
We ended up extending twice and staying at Tenuta il Corno for 3 lazy, relaxing days and enjoyed every minute of it! If you want 5 star luxury then this place is not it, but if you want a more genuine, rustic experience with great wine, great food and great coffee, then give this place a try!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- It is one of the most beautiful estates in Val di Pesa and was built by the ancient Del Corno family in the 12th century. The family committed itself with diligence and dedication to enhancing the rural environment and this estate was turned into a real "agronomical park". In 1523 - when the Renaissance was at its peak - the estate passed to the Strozzi family.Il Corno became their summer house. Since 1911 it is owned by the Counts Frova Arroni di Arrone, who carried on all its traditional agronomic activities - oil and wine production - with diligence and commitment, in a perfect union between high technology, traditional methods and respect for the environment. Towards the end of the 1990s some of the main country houses of the estate were restored and renovated and today they serve as accommodation for our guests. There are rooms and apartments - partly made up of original pieces - where tradition, elegance and simplicity create a real magic atmosphere. Here you will spend very relaxing holidays, sun baths or swimming in one of our pools surrounded by our big park. Enjoy some of our delicious typical food and drinking one of our fine wines !!. Finally, the Villa represents a romantic Renaissance-style location where to celebrate weddings, parties , meetings, conventions and any other events. You can stay in our country houses in an apartments or in a room, elegantly furnished, partly with original and antique pieces . The hills of the Chianti region, with vineyards and olive trees, characterize the splendid landscape that surrounds our country houses. These houses were built more than 500 years ago and they have been restored taking great care to preserve their original structure, materials and furniture. Their wooden beams and terracotta floors perfectly match the comfort and modernity of the services provided. You will experience the best of your holiday diving into our swimming pools surrounded by nature, having breakfast while admiring our breathtaking landscape, tasting the excellent wines we produce or having a romantic candlelit dinner. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Tenuta Il Corno Italy/Tuscany