Relais Borgo Santo Pietro is a lovely boutique hotel nestled in the rolling hills of Italy’s Tuscan wine region. Located just outside the old world town of Palazzetto, the entrance to the hotel is unassuming and almost unnoticeable. Once inside the cast iron gates guests are treated to lavender lined winding stone drives and perfectly manicured regional foliage. Staff members greet every guest at the end of the drive with offers of local apertivos and libations. Once situated with their drink of choice, guests are offered an immediate tour of the property while their bags are placed in their suite. Once a private villa, the hotel has remained quintessentially Tuscan boasting ancient 13th century stone walls and terra-cotta shingles. Upon entering the main “house”, guests find themselves amongst what feels like an ancient Tuscan villa. There’s nothing that suggests you’ve walked into the lobby of a hotel, in fact it feels quite the opposite. A functioning fireplace surrounded by vintage settees and books about the old world make guests feel at home, rather than at a hotel. The communal part of the main floor of the house includes a reception room, a large chef’s kitchen with dining table, and a glass lined living room complete with billiard table and a view of the gardens.
The guest rooms are each uniquely appointed with luxurious, vintage Italian period pieces and pre-programmed iPods complete with soothing sounds of the region. Our suite, called San Galgano, came complete with hand painted wall murals, a writing desk, vintage soaking tub and a view of the courtyard. Other multi-room suites boast sitting parlors, reading nooks, and baths fit for royalty. Back downstairs, the copper lined kitchen is fully functioning and serves as the central hub of the villa experience. Full board guests are served breakfast, lunch, and dinner on the patio adjacent to the kitchen.
The charm of the villa experience lends itself to promote relaxation and the weary traveler will find plenty of places to relax within the walls of the estate. While the charm of the villa cannot be denied, it is the grounds of the property that make Borgo Santo Pietro stand above the rest.
Upon exiting the villa, guests find themselves immersed in lush, tranquil garden landscapes. There are tranquility ponds, water features, peaceful reflection benches, outdoor seating escapes, lounges, infinity pools, and even a tree house complete with bar service! The grounds here are truly amazing and almost indescribable. At the tranquility ponds immediately outside the kitchen, guests are greeted with rows of blooming roses and peaceful water features that encourage relaxation. Intimate café tables are scattered throughout the spaces, which are separated by water features and perfectly manicured hedges. A secret pathway leads you away from the grottos to a pavilion lined with blossoms.
A short walk down the pavilion yields views of the valley below which are best seen from the depths of the infinity pool. The pool deck is peppered with chaises lounges and umbrellas for escaping the afternoon sun. Guests can’t help but relax poolside with refreshing cocktails from the pool bar. At night, the pool bar gives way to a candlelit lounge complete with dinner service. Guests who do not wish to dine amongst their peers can retreat to the cozy fire lit tree house complete with period chandeliers and couches. Bar service is offered until midnight in the tree house, which is undoubtedly the best place to unwind after a stressful day of relaxation at the pool. Finally, guests who find relaxing by the pool and late nights in the tree house too stressful will find comfort in the villa’s private spa. Set in the ancient bakery, the spa offers intimate treatments inside the ancient structure, on its private terrace, or anywhere on property.
The property also boasts acres of organic gardens which supply local fruits and vegetables to the kitchen. Even the most discerning eater will relish in the farm to table approach to providing local and sustainable food. If the gardens weren’t enough, the villa also maintains their own honey beehive which supplies all the honey for cooking and enjoying on property.
Daily menus are offered but the chef is happy to oblige your fancy. Daily wine tastings are also served at the communal kitchen table. Our resident Sommelier paired local wines with delicate chocolates and traditional Tuscan charcuterie. The wine tasting experience was without a doubt the most enlightening and enjoyable tasting we have ever attended. The tasting was interactive, educational, and just plain fun! It even concluded with a tour of the villa’s expansive wine cellar where our host corked vintage ports for tasting.
The property is also the ideal location for a one of a kind destination wedding. With many options for ceremony and reception locations on property there is also a stunning historic abbey down the road that just began to host weddings as well! As a whole, Borgo Santo Pietro is a wondrous mix of old world charm and new world convenience. If you like wine, intimate environments, friendly people, beautiful views, and amazing service you would be hard pressed to find a more enjoyable place to stay. Well traveled couples and honeymooners should absolutely have Borgo on their short list. Truly, there is likely no better place.
Borgo Santo Pietro
Palazzetto Siena, Italy
+39 0577 751222