Belmond Villa San Michele

Florence, Tuscany, Italy

At a Glance

  • This iconic hotel, voted one of the world's most beautiful, has amazing views of Florence and boasts a façade by Michelangelo

  • The hotel's main fine dining restaurant 'The Loggia' offers sublime Italian cooking with exceptional views over Florence

  • The hotel's cookery school has established a reputation for excellence among gourmets all over the world - internationally renowned chefs come to teach here

  • Relax in the hotel's stunning hilltop swimming pool and enjoy a calm oasis from the city center

  • Set on the outskirts of Florence, the hotel offers complimentary shuttle into the center daily

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Best time to Visit

Good time to visit

Average time to visit

Florence is an exciting place to visit at any time of the year, and most attractions are open all year round. The best time to visit Florence is in May, early June, late September and October. Days during those months are usually warm, and quite long. July and August are hot and humid with many tourists. Since most Italians leave their hot cities in the summer, many restaurants are closed in Florence.

Winter can get cold, particularly January but it is quiet. Temperatures are more favourable in the spring and autumn months.

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Insider's View

Book a lesson at the cookery school and you may be taught by an internationally renowned chef! They can even offer lessons for children.

Make sure to request a table at the front of the terrace at the Loggia Restaurant for magnificent uninterrupted views over Florence.

The Belmond Villa San Michele pool is perched on a grassy plateau above the spectacular Belmond gardens. Relax on a sun lounger, drink in hand and enjoy the panoramic views of Firenze.

The rooms in the main building work best for Spring and Fall stays with rich furnishings, fireplaces and sumptuous fabrics

Call us on 858 345 1764 to start planning your vacation to Belmond Villa San Michele

Description

Belmond Villa San Michele has to be one of the most romantic hotels in the world, with beautiful Italian gardens bursting with fragrant roses, set in a 15th century monastery and offering breathtaking views over Florence and the Tuscan countryside.

A 15th century Franciscan monastery with amazing views of Florence and boasting a façade by Michelangelo - there can be no more quintessential Italian experience, especially if you opt for the Michelangelo Suite, the Old Chapel or the new Garden Suites. Belmond Villa San Michele, fully restored by Belmond and voted one of the world's most beautiful, promises a rare experience indeed. And Chianti itself, the Medici Villas, San Gimignano, Siena, the breathtaking Tuscan countryside with its picture-book villages and, of course, the Renaissance splendour of Florence, with its museums, churches, art galleries and designer shopping, are all on your doorstep.

Set amidst the Italian gardens scented with lemon, the luxurious panoramic swimming pool is the perfect place to relax and admire the stunning vistas. The small gym also offers brilliant views. Local golf clubs offer championship-quality courses and there are tennis facilities nearby to learn or improve your skills.

Internationally renowned chefs come to teach the cookery school here, while regular guests of Belmond Villa San Michele have discovered yet another reason to return time and again. These cooking classes have a reputation for excellence amongst gourmet restaurants around the world.

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Accommodation

There are 46 rooms including 25 suites. Walnut and cherry custom-made furniture and elegant upholstery grace the rooms. All suites are very spacious with large marble bathrooms and some have a private terrace to admire the stunning views over Florence. Most bathrooms have separate bath and shower. All rooms are well equipped with mini bar, direct dial telephones, satellite TV, CD and DVD players, air-conditioning and WiFi.

Double Classic Room

Double Rooms are uniquely decorated in luxuriant shades of cream and warm pastels. Custom-made furniture, parchment lampshades and elegant upholstery perfectly complement the hotel’s sumptuous atmosphere.

Each double room has been beautifully restored and has a king size or two twin beds, a marble bathroom, writing desk and is spread over 24sqm. Each double room has luxury toiletries, HDTV with DVD player, fully stocked mini-bar and wireless internet.

Double Superior Room

These rooms cover from 24sqm and are decorated in luxurious shades of cream and warm pastels. Located in the original part of the building, the Double Superior Rooms are spacious and overlook either the courtyard or the countryside. Each has a large marble bathroom and separate shower.

Each double room has been beautifully restored and has a king size or two twin beds, a marble bathroom, writing desk and is spread over 24sqm. Each double room has luxury toiletries, HDTV with DVD player, fully stocked mini-bar and wireless internet.

Double Deluxe Room

Double Rooms are uniquely decorated in luxuriant shades of cream and warm pastels. These cover 24 sqm and offer an idyllic view over Florence or the Italian garden and wooded park. Bathrooms feature Carrara marble double vanities and walk-in showers.

Each room has a king size bed or two twin beds, marble bathroom and writing desk. Each room also comes with luxury toiletries, HDTV with DVD player, fully stocked mini bar and wireless internet.

Superior Junior Suite

Each charming Superior Junior Suite leads out onto a garden and paved terrace, surrounded by laurel hedges for total privacy. Royal yellow Carrara marble lines the walls of the generous bathrooms, with his and hers armoires and double vanities.

Each room is sized from 35 sqm and has a king-size or twin beds, a marble bathroom with separate bath and shower and a welcoming lounge with a sofa. Each suite also comes with luxury toiletries, HDTV with DVD player, fully stocked mini bar and wireless internet.

Deluxe Junior Suite

These stunning suites are set over 35 sqm and boast stunning views of the old monastery and Italian Gardens. Access is through a wall-to-wall glass door, which, when fully open, expands the living space out onto the terrace.

Each room has a king-size or twin beds, a marble bathroom with separate bath and shower and a welcoming lounge with a sofa. Each suite also comes with luxury toiletries, HDTV with DVD player, fully stocked mini bar and wireless internet.

Executive Junior Suite

Idyllically situated, Executive Junior Suites offer astonishing views over Florence and the Italian gardens. Bathrooms are spacious, with a walk-in shower, bathtub, double marble vanities and his and hers armoires. Each room is spacious covering 35 sqm and has a king size bed or two twin beds and a welcoming lounge area with sofa.

Each suite also comes with luxury toiletries, HDTV with DVD player, fully stocked mini bar and wireless.

Garden Suite

Located in the hotel's beautiful garden, the Garden Suites have private terraces looking out over Florence. On request, the hotel can add one or two extra beds in the lounge for children sharing a room with their parents. Each suite is around 60 sqm and has a king size bed, marble bathroom with separate bath and shower and a spacious living room. Each room also comes with luxury toiletries, HDTV with DVD player, fully stocked mini bar and wireless.

Donatello Suite

Once the Prior's quarters, the Donatello Suite occupies a whole corner of the monastery, with views of Florence, the Arno Valley and the Italian garden. The sunlit sitting room, with an ornate corner fireplace, leads into an expansive bedroom with king-size bed, breakfast table and armchairs.

Each suite is around 60 sqm has a king size bed, marble bathroom with separate bath and shower and a spacious living room. Each room also comes with luxury toiletries, HDTV with DVD player, fully stocked mini bar and wireless.

Michelangelo Suite

The largest and most romantic, the Michelangelo Suite stretches the whole length of the hotel. Once the monastery library, it also served as Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte's headquarters in Florence.

A dramatic stone fireplace dominates one of the walls in the spacious open-plan sleeping and sitting areas. It enjoys views over Florence, the Arno Valley and the Chianti hills.

The canopied, king-size bed, magnificent artworks and bathroom, with pool-like bathtub and separate shower offer complete luxury.

Limonaia Suite and Villa

This luxurious suite available upon request, is located in the Convent's former orangery - a separate building in the hotel's Italian gardens. It has spectacular views over Florence, a heated plunge pool and private garden complete with waterfall.

On request, this historic 80 sqm apartment can be connected to a second suite, linked by a staircase, and a third suite, accessed via the garden. With a private villa-within-a-villa atmosphere, it’s a unique haven for families and groups of friends, or for a special occasion, such as a wedding or exclusive party, and can be taken as one, two or three-bedroom.

Childcare

Children are welcome to come and stay at Belmond Villa San Michele and there is a dedicated Kids' Concierge to keep the little ones busy and entertained. Children can become involved in Italian classes, picnic outings or pasta making to name a few activities. There is also a baby sitting service and a child-friendly menu available at the hotel.

Facilities

The elegant Loggia restaurant offers exceptional views over Florence. The pool restaurant also enjoys fantastic views from its hilltop location. Belmond Villa San Michele's three stylish and relaxing bars serve classic cocktails, vintage liqueurs and light snacks. There is an amazing panoramic swimming pool and small gym both with perfect sea vistas.

Activities

Mountain bikes can be hired for trips to Fiesole or Florence. Local golf clubs offer championship-quality courses and there are tennis facilities nearby. Guests can also trek through the glorious Tuscan countryside on horseback. There are cooking classes with internationally renowned chefs.

Reviews

4

Cammie Burke (Staff)

Belmond Villa San Michele is located just 25 minutes to the city center with panoramic views of Firenze. The hotel offers a complimentary shuttle, making it a seamless travel journey to get to the city whenever you please. The hotel oozes romance with manicured gardens, delicious food and world-class service.

5

Mrs Laura Taylor-Vann (Guest)

Authentic and in the elegant style of a converted monastery. Nice local places to dine and great sight seeing. Superb views

4

Sarah Byrne (Staff)

Another gem in the Belmond hotel collection - perfect for a long weekend so you have time to enjoy the pool, gardens and of course the city of Florence

4

(Press)

The location

In a 15th-century Franciscan monastery whose faade was, apparently, designed by Michelangelo perched on a wooded hillside overlooking Florence, with views over the city and to the Tuscan hills.

We like

The views. These are far-reaching, achingly romantic and visible from just about anywhere in the hotel. The outdoor swimming pool, perched on the top level of the terraced gardens, looks down on gentle wooded slopes rolling down to Florence, which in turn is backed by the hazy hills of Tuscany. The rooms, both in the old building and in the elegant, modern annex, have the same vistas, as does the restaurant, housed in the breezy loggia of the monastery. The original building is fascinating, with restored frescoes of The Last Supper dating from 1602, and deeply worn flagstones paving the warren of narrow passages from the lobby. The service is supremely polite but with a relaxed, Italian temperament.

Not so keen

Not being within walking distance of town, although regular shuttle buses make this a minor quibble.

The rooms

The 46 rooms, 25 of which are suites, are decked out in understated style gold and cream fabrics, terracotta floors and parchment lampshades, with marble bathrooms. Garden suites have private terraces hedged in by laurel and lemon trees, while the Donatello suite takes up an entire corner of the monastery, overlooking the gardens to one side and Florence to the other. The Michelangelo suite once Napoleon's headquarters in Florence stretches across the entire faade of the original building.

The food and drink

The Loggia Restaurant is one of the finest in Florence, serving traditional, beautifully presented Tuscan food. A light lunch might include hand-made pasta with lobster and fresh tomato, while dinner involves more robust dishes such as fillet of turbot in a rosemary crust, followed by a selection of Italian cheeses. There is a variety of Florentine cooking courses on offer, including one for children, taught by chef Attilio Di Fabrizio, and a wine-tasting tour of the hotel's wine cellar is led by Domenico Napolitano, the sommelier.

Villa San Michele, Florence: hotel review

Francisca Kellett reviews the Villa San Michele, a hotel in a 15th-century Franciscan monastery with achingly romantic views of Florence and the hills of Tuscany.

The rooms, both in the old building and in the elegant, modern annex, have wonderful views, as does the restaurant By Francisca Kellett 8:00AM GMT 07 Mar 2010

Comment

The location

In a 15th-century Franciscan monastery whose faade was, apparently, designed by Michelangelo perched on a wooded hillside overlooking Florence, with views over the city and to the Tuscan hills.

We like

The views. These are far-reaching, achingly romantic and visible from just about anywhere in the hotel. The outdoor swimming pool, perched on the top level of the terraced gardens, looks down on gentle wooded slopes rolling down to Florence, which in turn is backed by the hazy hills of Tuscany. The rooms, both in the old building and in the elegant, modern annex, have the same vistas, as does the restaurant, housed in the breezy loggia of the monastery. The original building is fascinating, with restored frescoes of The Last Supper dating from 1602, and deeply worn flagstones paving the warren of narrow passages from the lobby. The service is supremely polite but with a relaxed, Italian temperament.

Not so keen

Not being within walking distance of town, although regular shuttle buses make this a minor quibble.

The rooms

The 46 rooms, 25 of which are suites, are decked out in understated style gold and cream fabrics, terracotta floors and parchment lampshades, with marble bathrooms. Garden suites have private terraces hedged in by laurel and lemon trees, while the Donatello suite takes up an entire corner of the monastery, overlooking the gardens to one side and Florence to the other. The Michelangelo suite once Napoleon's headquarters in Florence stretches across the entire faade of the original building.

The food and drink

The Loggia Restaurant is one of the finest in Florence, serving traditional, beautifully presented Tuscan food. A light lunch might include hand-made pasta with lobster and fresh tomato, while dinner involves more robust dishes such as fillet of turbot in a rosemary crust, followed by a selection of Italian cheeses. There is a variety of Florentine cooking courses on offer, including one for children, taught by chef Attilio Di Fabrizio, and a wine-tasting tour of the hotel's wine cellar is led by Domenico Napolitano, the sommelier.

Telegraph rating: 9/10

Experiences

  • Bologna Half Day Tour

    Bologna is a vibrant city of colonnaded buildings, unique churches and a rich gastronomic scene. Wander the medieval streets and lively squares, visit the Basilica de San Petronio and climb to the top of one of the Due Torri for impressive city views.

  • Cinque Terre Villages

    Enjoy a scenic day trip to the picturesque Cinque Terre. Walk along Liguria’s rugged cliffs for sweeping Mediterranean views and wander the piazzas and harbors of the pastel-colored villages below.

  • Classic Walking Tour of Florence

    Explore the city's most famous landmarks with your private guide who will be able to bring these well known sights to life. Highlights include Cathedral Square and the iconic Duomo, the Accademia Gallery and the Ponte Vecchio.

  • Culinary tour of Florence

    Discover the wonders of Florentine cuisine as you tour the city with your private guide on this culinary tour. Walk around Florence, visiting famous culinary landmarks and stopping for delicious tasters along the way.

  • Florence by boat and on foot

    Discover Florence from a new perspective - aboard a Florentine gondola cruising along the Arno River. After a walking tour of the city's highlights, sit back and relax on the boat as you watch the sun set over the rooftops of Florence.

  • Florence scavenger hunt

    Explore Florence with an exciting scavenger hunt and discover the secrets behind the city. You'll uncover clues as you travel around the city, learning about Florence's interesting past on the way. Find the treasure and reward yourself with gelato!

  • Florentine cuisine masterclass

    Discover the flavors of Florence with an immersive cooking masterclass. Your chef will teach you the secrets of Tuscan cooking as you learn how to prepare a four-course meal. As a reward for all your hard work tuck in to your delicious creations!

  • Fresco or mosaic making masterclass

    Discover the art techniques of Rome throughout the ages with a fresco or mosaic making masterclass. Perfect for children, this workshop will have our youngest guests following in the footsteps of the great Italian artists of the past.

  • Full Day tour of Siena and San Gimignano

    Enjoy a trip into the Tuscan countryside to visit historic Siena and San Gimignano. Soak up the atmosphere of Siena’s Piazza del Campo, marvel at the striking architecture of the cathedral and look inside the medieval walls of San Gimignano.

  • Gelato making workshop

    Discover the traditional art of gelato making with a workshop in one of Florence's gelaterias. Get creative as you combine fresh ingredients to make your favorite ice cream, with guidance from the experts!

  • Palatine Gallery and Boboli Gardens

    Explore the official residence of the Medici family, and the impressive collection of art housed within the Palatine Gallery. Discover the works of Raphael, Rubens and Titian before marvelling at the beautiful landscaping of the Boboli Gardens.

  • Private walking tour of Florence

    Explore the city's most famous landmarks with your private guide who will be able to bring these well known sights to life. Highlights include Cathedral Square and the iconic Duomo, the Accademia Gallery and the Ponte Vecchio.

  • Tour the Uffizi Gallery

    Discover some of the most famous artworks and step back into Renaissance Florence; the epicenter of art and culture. Visiting the Uffizi Gallery is a must do, offering a chance to see the beautiful works of Botticelli and Michelangelo.

Location & directions

Florence, Tuscany, Italy

Situated on a hilltop in Fiesole (part of Florence), surrounded by trees and terraced gardens overlooking the city of Florence and the Arno Valley below.

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Call us on 858 345 1764 to start planning your vacation to Belmond Villa San Michele

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