Amidst the gentle hills, cypress trees and winding roads of Tuscany is a fully restored jewel of an historic fortress, its majestic origins stretching as far back as the 11th century. Now, reinvigorated with opulent style, Castello di Velona is the perfect bolthole for travellers seeking a helping of luxurious relaxation in one of Italy’s most well-loved regions.
A short drive from the medieval village of Montalcino, the resort lies at the heart of the Val d’Orcia, a UNESCO-inscribed region that stuns with is picturesque charm. Upon arrival, guests can check in to one of 44 timelessly chic rooms and suites, all decked out with true Italian flair and fitted with decadent touches, including marble bathrooms and plush upholstery.
This is Italy, after all, and no exclusive getaway would be complete without a menu to complement such a venue. The panoramic backdrops are just as tempting as the dishes at the two restaurants, Velona Lounge and Settimo Senso, which serve Tuscan and Mediterranean cuisine with local produce, including olive oil and Brunello di Montalcino wine from the Castello’s own estate.
For ultimate luxury, guests can indulge at the ultra-sleek OLI Spa, a striking haven with its clean lines and simplistic design. Featuring whirlpool baths, treatment rooms and steam baths, the four pools with natural hot spring water will undoubtedly tempt guests outside, where outstanding views provide the perfect backdrop to an afternoon’s soak. The treatments, centred on the practices of phyto- and aromatherapy, are designed to enrich and benefit the mind, body and soul, enhancing guests’ natural wellbeing.
Less than two hours from the regional capital of Florence, Castello di Velona is perfectly placed for a Tuscan adventure. Charming medieval villages pepper the area, along with the majestic city of Siena whose classical culture and russet-coloured cityscape leave a lasting impression on visitors. Foodies will revel in truffle hunting and cooking classes, and for the more active traveller, horse riding, cycling and even hot-air ballooning offer alternative ways to see the region.
A highly pleasant swim in the warm, panoramic outdoor pools overlooking the scenic Val d’Orcia region
Need to know
• AA, an intense massage ritual fusing Eastern and Western techniques
• Castle Rendezvous for Two couple’s package
• 44 rooms and suites
• Two restaurants and a pool bar
• Aromatherapy Associates beauty treatments
• Heliport on site
• Historic 11th-century fortress