A member of the prestigious Relais & Chateaux collection, the storybook Il Borro is a medieval hamlet lovingly restored by the Ferragamo family into a luxe Tuscan retreat. It is part of a 700 hectare working estate and surrounded by vineyards and olive groves in the heart of Tuscany. Wines and olive oil are produced here by traditional methods – they are an integral part of the landscape of the region. From the moment you drive in thru the entrance gates into the majestic driveway surrounded by undulating greenery and horse stables, you know you have arrived at the Tuscany of your dreams. As soon as you check in to the unassuming reception, you are transported into an oasis of calm and serenity. An electric buggy takes you to your luxury suite at the charming medieval village where you can settle in and spend your days strolling through the narrow streets of the village, chatting with the local artisans in the craft shops, relaxing at the pools, enjoying treatments at Il Borro Spa or the traditional Tuscan cuisine at Osteria del Borro. If you want to be active you can choose from an almost unlimited menu including cooking classes, truffle hunting, mountain biking, horse-riding, zipping around in a Ferrari or taking a flight on a hot air balloon. Il Borro represents the storybook Tuscany you have always dreamed about!
Ambiance & Vibe:
The ambiance is one of welcoming old-world luxury, There’s a genuine village community atmosphere here: the church holds weekly services and there are several craft studios selling made-to-measure shoes, leather goods, artworks and so on, which are open to the public. Only the resort’s electric vehicles are allowed so it’s incredibly peaceful.
Design & Style:
The theme throughout is country-chic with natural materials, wooden furniture and solid ceiling beams. Luxury and style coexist happily with an authentic historic character that hasn’t been compromised by over-manicuring the natural surroundings.
A stone bridge leads to the perfectly restored and preserved ancient medieval village of Il Borro, the heart of a luxury hotel whose accommodation is spread throughout the village. Each of the luxury 38 suites housed in the appealing stone-built buildings of the medieval village is smartly furnished named after a former resident or profession, and each has its own layout and authentic character, reflecting the village’s charm. Some have gardens, kitchens or open fires, and all have beautiful yet subtle country-style décor. Staying in the medieval village allows guests to experience true village community spirit, meeting up in the piazza, strolling the stone paved alleys and shopping in the artisans’ workshops. The Concierge located in the centre of the village can help guests with suggestions for making the most of their stay.
We stayed in one of the luxury suites in the quaint and charming medieval village. The suite was cozy with a fireplace and excuded elegance and Tuscan charm. Outside the window were views of the beautiful Tuscan countryside.
Dimora Il Borro: an elegant 19th-century villa with 10 bedrooms, dedicated staff and private facilities including a pool, gym and sauna, overlooks the village and can only be booked as a unit; there are also two luxury self-catering villas further afield on the estate and several simpler farmhouses. Today the Dimora is an exclusive location for VIPs, large families, events or meetings, with 10 double bedrooms with en suite bathrooms, a meeting room, dining room, study, heated indoor swimming pool, gym, billiard room and sauna. Each suite has its own unique features, such as the canopy bed and oriental-style wallpaper of the Royal Suite. A residential staff is always at guests’ disposal to ensure exclusive, highly personalized service.
Tuscan Bistro: The relaxed atmosphere makes Il Borro Tuscan Bistro a convivial spot to enjoy traditional dishes that celebrate the best locally sourced ingredients, and are infused with typically Tuscan flavours; simple, wholesome and delicious. The Tuscan Bistro serves traditional dishes such as T-bone Fiorentina steak and gnocchi with creamy pumpkin. Also here, the impressive breakfast buffet includes fresh pastries, yoghurts, cheeses and fruit (there’s even a juice-extractor), alongside delicious home-made breads, sausages and bacon.
Osteria Del Borro: Osteria del Borro is a refined gastronomic restaurant with a warm country-style atmosphere and a romantic view of the medieval village. At the heart of his culinary philosophy, Chef Andrea Campani uses a large tailor-made traditional oven with which he prepares generous grilled dishes cooked over a wood fire, always accompanied by an acclaimed wine selection. Getting back to its roots, in direct contact with the flame, this cuisine is ethical and transparent, based solely on the dexterity of the chef and his knowledge of the ingredients. The neutral tones of the interior with maxi-chairs and an open fire are conducive to relaxation while the roof terrace is ideal for summer nights. Stylishly presented dishes, made using estate-grown organic produce where possible, include goat-meat filled pasta, sheep’s ricotta cannoli and stuffed quail, and are complemented perfectly by estate wines.
Vin Café: is ideal for a drink or lunch after a dip in the adjacent infinity pool. It’s open all day and serves light meals including farm-fresh salads dressed with estate olive oil.
Wine Cellar: We took a memorable tour of the Il Borro Cellars, which is a journey to the heart of Tuscan wine-making tradition and a chance to learn more about this “art”. Here, in one of the oldest cellars in Italy, the first ever Chianti wine was produced, and today as then, the magic of winemaking continues with passion and commitment. Accompanied by experts you will see the different steps that turn simple grapes into fine wines and the vats, barrels and barriques that make this possible. This special tour ends with tasting our wines and savouring the result of a hundred-year history.
The Fabulous Il Borro Wine Harvest Festival & BBQ Picnic - Held in September each year:
Staff hit the right balance between friendly and professional and as reception isn’t central, there’s a daytime concierge at the village. During our stay, we ate breakfast at the Tuscan Bistro, dinners at the Cafe and at the celebrated Osteria del Borro, and found the food and service at all locations to be exceptional, The service is perfectly timed and attentive but the staff are friendly and genuine too, delivering classic Italian hospitality. Most of the staff speak good English so you can communicate exactly what you want to eat.
Our experience while checking in and out was also very efficient and while checking in, we were welcomed with a nice gift box consisting of an Italian beer and organic olive oil from the estate.
Facilities & Activities:
Facilities: The impressive range of facilities includes a well-equipped 24-hour gym, a small spa with steam room and whirlpool tub, and two open-air pools, the larger in a delightfully secluded spot with its own pool-bar. Bikes can be hired to explore the estate’s trails (five km to 45km/ three to 28 miles), there’s horse-riding (including horse-back yoga) and a three-hole golf course and driving range near the private airfield. The village’s craft studios offer hands-on experiences including shoe and jewellery making, while the Vino & Arte gallery has engravings by artists such as Picasso, Rembrandt and Andy Warhol.
Il Borro Spa is an oasis of wellbeing in the heart of the Estate where guests can keep in shape with gym or yoga classes, be pampered in the exclusive Spa Suite, and enjoy regenerating treatments at the hands of expert therapists. The Spa fits perfectly with Il Borro’s wellbeing philosophy, where unspoilt nature and relaxing activities combine to give guests uniquely gratifying experiences.
Activities: The Il Borro Estate covers around 800 hectares, part of which is given over to cultivation, our animals, the nature reserve, accommodation and the wine cellars. The cellar tours are very educational and highly recommended and end with tastings of the excellent estate wines. However, there is also a large area of still pristine terrain to explore, country trails for bike or horse rides, tennis courts, a football pitch and a golf course for sports-filled holidays spent in the open air. From cooking or painting classes to golf, a wine tour and a whole variety of excursions out and about in the surrounding countryside, every activity is full of surprises and enjoyment. Bikes can be hired to explore the estate’s trails (five km to 45km/ three to 28 miles), there’s horse-riding (including horse-back yoga) and a three-hole golf course and driving range near the private airfield. Test drives in a Ferrari, helicopter tours, thrilling hot-air balloon flights, and shopping tours to the main luxury outlets to delight any shopaholic can all be organized on request. The staff go out of their way to create unique and memorable experiences to suit your preferences.
In the village, entering the artisan’s workshop is a dive in the past. Every shop tells a tradition and a passion that they have stopped there, to be kept intact and handed down. The artisans will welcome you with the smile of those who open the door to you, happy to share with you their art, their history.
Il Borro is about 60km (37 miles) from both Florence and Siena and 20km (12 miles) from Arezzo. It’s such an enchanting world of its own with so much to do that once you’ve passed through the film set-like main entrance gates you won’t want to leave.
What We Love:
- Storybook medieval village surrounded by wooded hillsides, vineyards and olive groves located in a 750-hectare organic estate and winery in the heart of Tuscany.
- Il Borro was established more than a thousand years ago and has a lot of rich history before it was purchased and lovingly restored by the Ferragamo family.
- There’s a genuine village community, country chic atmosphere here with the craft shops : the church holds weekly services and there are several craft studios selling made-to-measure shoes, leather goods, artworks and so on, offer hands-on experiences.
- Each of the 38 suites housed in the appealing stone-built buildings of the charming medieval village is named after a former resident or profession, and each has its own layout and character. Some have gardens, kitchens or open fires, and all have beautiful yet subtle country-style décor with views of the Tuscan countrside.
- Il Borro produces their own wine collection and a the wine cellar tour is truly educational with an expert talking about the terroir and history of the wines, followed by a lovely wine tasting session.
- The food served in the restaurants is made from local ingredients from the Il Borro gardens, fields and farmhouse, giving the food fresh quality you can taste.
- The impressive range of facilities includes a well-equipped 24-hour gym, a small spa with steam room and whirlpool tub, and two open-air pools, the larger in a delightfully secluded spot with its own pool-bar. Both pools have a panoramic view of the countryside.
- The resort offers a huge variety of activities from horseback riding, mountain biking, cooking lessons, truffle hunting, tours in a Ferrari or helicopter to hot air ballooning.
Best Time to Visit:
Tuscany’s best travel months are April thru October. The Spring and Autumn months are slightly less expensive and crowded with more pleasant weather. Many of the famous wineries have their wine harvest festivals during the month of September, where you can participate in these memorable experiences of picking grapes and indulging in a BBQ picnic with Tuscan wines in the gorgeous vineyards.
September 2, 2019
September 5, 2019