By Narbeh Minassian
Il Salviatino is a hotel of delightful contradictions. Its very location combines two worlds into one, with a rural surrounding so tranquil and so green yet with the buzzing urban energy of Downtown Florence just a fifteen minute cab ride away. While the building may look like a contemporary hotel, it is actually a hand-restored 15th century villa; offering all the luxury and grandeur of a modern boutique but also all the timeless charm and atmosphere of an antique villa.
However, the mantra of the hotel lies in its service. They believe in unlimited hospitality in every sense, going the extra mile and some more to ensure that all your needs are met and that you get nothing but the highest VIP treatment, which flows directly from the General Manager, Stefano Plotegher.
This special treatment is reflected in the design of the hotel. While all rooms are equipped with the same updated modern amenities, each room is unique in appearance and has its own ambience. All include handcrafted furniture and Tuscan linen, with an impressive décor that emphasises carefully selected artwork (Florence is, after all, one of the cornerstones of Renaissance art) and seating that is made of the finest leather.
All suites and rooms offer a vast living space and a place that you can call your home, until checkout time at least. As far as recommendations go, it is difficult to place any room far enough above or below the rest to warrant a stronger recommendation, but, having said that, if you want to take advantage of the scenic views of Tuscany, then the Dome View De Luxe may be the best choice.
What I can recommend and even insist upon, is to resist the temptation of staying in the rooms for a long time, as easy as that would be, because the hotel is located in a part of Europe where there is simply too much to see and to do. As the ‘Athens of the Middle Ages’ and as the city that is considered by many to be one of the birthplaces of the Renaissance, it is no surprise that Florence is a huge attraction for art lovers. But beyond art, it is one of the most beautiful places in Europe and perhaps the world.
The two most famous art galleries are unquestionably the Uffizi Gallery and the Pitti Palace (Palazzo Pitti), which was once owned by the Medici family in the 16th century. Even if art is not up your street, you can’t fail to be thoroughly in awe of the architecture. Manhattan’s skyscrapers are one thing, but Florence’s blend of the archaic and the modern brings together what makes for a skyline for all times- literally! The Hotel provides guests with a complementary shuttle service to the heart of this historic city, or, if preferred, private cabs can be arranged.
The sheer scale of interest in Florence is enough to wear you out, leaving you in need of some relaxation. While the idyllic and pastoral setting of the hotel in the beautiful gardens radiates its own relaxing vibes -particularly with a swimming pool situated in the center of one of the aforementioned gardens- the hotel’s spa is the best place to unwind in arguably the whole of Tuscany. This is where Il Salviatino’s renowned service marries the beauty of its setting. The Spa plays host to Dr Vranjes, which is one of Florence’s most exclusive perfume houses; needless to say, therefore, that the treatments are mostly accompanied by an extraordinary array of smells. Their exclusive treatments include detoxes in Turkish Baths, anti-stress vapors, and personalized massages.
In 1300, Pope Boniface claimed that Aristotle was wrong: the universe is made of five elements, not four; Earth, Air, Fire, Water, and Florentines. This pride in Florentine history and culture has found its way into Il Salviatino, with the management and the employees taking the utmost pride in providing outstanding service in outstanding measure. A trip to this hotel is to experience time travel without leaving 2012, to experience the countryside and the city, all under the banner of luxury and hospitality. Put simply; at Il Salviatino, impossible is two letters too long. •
Via del Salviatino, 21 50137
Fiesole Province of Florence, Italy
+ 39 055 904 1111