“Contemporary gastro-hideaway surrounded by olive trees and vineyards in a lesser visited part of Tuscany”
The appeal of Tenuta San Pietro is in its décor as well as its service and fine food: rather than staying in one of the Baroque mansions nearby, with their heavy antique furniture, you’re in a hotel with a lighter touch to it.
There are 8 luxury rooms and 2 suites, all individually designed and decorated with an overall muted theme. There are splashes of colour on the walls – all the paintings are by the estate’s Norwegian owner – and plenty of upmarket technology, including flatscreen TVs.
The beds are a highlight – each suite and room has a kingsize bed brought over especially from Norway. These can also be set up as twin beds, and some have quirky modern looping metal bedheads.
In the light, modern bathrooms you’ll find Erbario Toscano olive oil soap and body products, rather fittingly for a hotel that presses its own DOP olive oil. The 2 suites, which are set apart from the main building, are a good option for families and honeymooners and have wood-beamed ceilings, wooden floors, a master bedroom, living room with sofa bed and a spacious bathroom.
Four of the rooms (Tenuta Di Valgiano, Bellavista, Luca and Olivo) overlook the valley, with fantastic views - it's worth requesting these - especially as they are no more expensive. The remaining four rooms have a mountain view, and being near the (minor) road can get some noise - we'd recommend avoiding them if possible. The 2 suites are in a separate building near the road and can also get some road noise when it's busy; but if you're coming with one or two children they are the best option.
Tenuta San Pietro is surrounded by olive groves and vineyards so it’s not a surprise to hear that the olive oil here is fantastic and that the wine cellar has around 350 bottles in its stores.
The kitchen is run by superb chef Guido who creates local dishes with flair: expect fillet of rabbit, Mediterranean king prawns, pheasant with pomegranate sauce and decadent, divinely presented desserts. We loved the pasta (homemade, of course) with stewed hare. Dinner is served either in the upstairs dining room with views of the valley or outside on the terrace; you may need to book in high season.
You will probably want to eat out for lunch (although a simple lunch of sandwiches or salad and cold cuts can be arranged); there are plenty of options in Lucca and the nearby towns. If you're staying a while, you might also want to head out for a lighter dinner from time to time - though bear in mind that it's a windy 7km drive to the nearest restaurant.
For breakfast you can expect a buffet of regional cheeses and cured meats, homemade bread, croissants, fruit, coffee and eggs.
Foodies can enroll on one of Guido’s cookery lessons or enjoy olive oil and wine tasting sessions. The estate’s olive oil harvest takes place in November and you can join in too, by arrangement.
The suites are ideal as family rooms and each sleeps four; children under three stay free and there's a cot available on request. Older children can stay in a pull-out bed for a small fee.
Remember baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking
Children's menu available