Pair medieval castle grandeur with fine wines and finer dining
History & culture | October holidays | Self-drive | Summer
Surrounded by olive groves and manicured gardens, this is the Tuscan countryside at its very best. Of course, no slice of Italy’s favourite region would be complete without its wineries and Castello Banfi doesn’t disappoint. Tour its vineyards before tasting your way through its cellars. Additionally, there’s even a Bottle and Glass Museum onsite, showcasing every era of glass production from 5th century Roman pieces to Picasso’s famous Water Girl. More practically, the hotel is also just 45 minutes from Siena’s medieval masterpieces. It’s all via exceptionally scenic drives.
In the 1700s, a stone hamlet rose around this 13th century castle, first serving as the home for the farmers who worked for the region’s nobility. Today, while all that idyllic Tuscan architecture has been immaculately preserved, it’s all been looked after by Federico Forquet, one of Italy’s finest interior designers. Resultantly, exposed timber ceilings look down on premium fabrics and hand-decorated flourishes. Walk-in rain-fall showers, Nespresso coffee machines and complimentary WiFi add more contemporary touches. And, whether you’re in a Deluxe Room or a luxury Suite, you’ll enjoy views of either the castle or its rural surrounds.
Across the hotel’s two restaurant options you’ll be treated to authentic Tuscan cuisine, predicated on only the freshest of local ingredients. For lunch head to La Taverna where local favourites are served under an original vaulted ceiling while the elegant Sala dei Grappoli offers more refined dining. Here you’ll be able to enjoy multi-course dinners, complemented by sommelier-chosen wine pairings from the hotel’s estate. If you’re inspired, book onto a cooking course to learn the secrets behind homemade pasta and the region’s world-famous dishes.
Unwind with a glass of something in the pergola gardens or find your relaxation in the pool, where sun lounger lazes are taken with spectacular views of Brunello’s vineyards. You’ll also have to pay a visit to L’Enoteca, the hotel’s wine bar. Here, a range of the region’s finest varietals are presented alongside a variety of artisanal foods and crafts. Pair sheep’s cheese and prosciutto with a local Chianti. There’s also a small fitness room to burn off any excess.
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