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“A Wonderful Experience”

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Castello di Tornano
Certificate of Excellence
Level Contributor
72 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
“A Wonderful Experience”
Reviewed 30 September 2011

Just stayed at this magnificent charmer! Well marked signs led us to the gorgeous Castello di Tornano...a warm welcome, a lovely junior suite in the castle (though they also have apartments on the property)...speaking of the property - it is set on and around hills and vineyards - totally lovely...we arrived, were greeted warmly and shown to our room on the first floor of the castle - we entered and the curtained 4 poster bed, large room, modern bathroom and sitting room - and windows with views took our breath away! Dinner was either inside or outside - we chose outside and the food was amazing! Having tasted the wine earlier in the day, we chose the Chianti Riserva (delicious!) for dinner, but also loved the Classico and the Tournus (really fine!) and we bought several bottles as well as olive oil upon departure. Service at dinner was attentive, but allowed us to talk, meet other guests and take pictures...it was so nice to totally relax and enjoy ourselves...there's a pool, we took a morning hike in the vineyards (tasted a few grapes too), a view from the top of the castle tower (and a jacuzzi up there too)...just a totally transporting place...explore Tuscany during the day and return in the evening to relax, dine, and sleep well...the grounds have chairs, chaises and other comfortable places to recline...

Room Tip: I loved the suite inside the castle, but was told the apartments are wonderful too!
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  • Stayed September 2011, travelled as a couple
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Thank takeoffitaly
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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English first
Level Contributor
14 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 August 2011

We spent 2 days in 3 days in Florence before we arrived at Castello di Tornano so we needed a well earned rest. Our room was in the tower and as soon as we checked in, we fell in love with the place. The mood was very relaxed and gentle. We had a hire car (you really do need a car here!!) and took a short drive to Gaiole and to Radda which were both really pretty towns. One evening for dinner, we had the Florentine steak - it was the best steak we had. We did the wine tour and Victor made it both informing and fun. The views from our room were amazing. If we had one criticism it was that the bed was a little hard. When we got home, we drank our bottle of Castello di Tornano Chianti and it brought back great memories. We were only able to stay 2 x nights but would have happily stayed longer. Great place for a quiet romantic break.

Room Tip: The rooms in the tower were amazing but there is no lift so travel light! Use a car - public transp...
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  • Stayed July 2011, travelled as a couple
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Thank CanaryDublin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
58 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 August 2011

We stayed here last week while travelling around Tuscany.
The location is fantastic, amazing views, quiet surroundings, the building is great...
The room was very good size and comfortable.
The only disappointment was that they forgot that we wanted to do wine tasting. I had booked it a few weeks before but when we got there they said they didn't have anything in the diary and the person that does the wine tasting wasn't there.
The day after they recognised they have received my mail but forgot to put it in the agenda... I wasn't very impressed by that, specially considering they were not very apologetic.
The service in the restaurant for dinner and breakfast was great, very attentive and friendly.
For dinner, they have a set tasting menu. 5 courses for 40£ pp, i thought this was quite expensive considering we we ate.
I would definitely stay here again, but eat else where.

  • Stayed August 2011, travelled as a couple
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Thank mrodri81
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Madison, Florida
Level Contributor
27 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 61 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 July 2011

FROM THE NOMAD ARCHITECT (thenomadarchitect.blogspot.com)

Tuscany - There are few places on earth that cannot be adequately described in words or even photographs. Wales, Big Sur, Whidbey Island and of course Panama City Beach, Florida (just kidding). Some places are more than scenery or food or even people. They have a vibe that must be experienced first hand. Tuscany is like no other place you will ever visit. Yes it has rolling hills, vineyards, ancient fortresses and the best food in all of Europe. It also has more small, unique B&B's and hotels than any region of Italy. And fortunately, for us Nomads, it has managed to avoid the commercialization and wanton development so prevalent in other tourist laden areas of Europe. This is amazing, given the recent media coverage of this romantic part of Central Italy. Come on, admit it, you know you would love to buy a house in Tuscany just like Diane Lane did in "Under The Tuscan Sun" and enjoy the uniqueness and eccentricities of one of the truly great cultures of the world.

For me, visiting Italy and particularly Tuscany, was a life changing experience. In fact, I think I could say it was profound on multiple levels. Going to Italy was our first trip abroad and it didn't occur until I was almost fifty. Fifty!! That's a subject for another day and another post. For my wife and myself, this was going to be a big deal. We started planning our trip a year before we left. We read every Rick Steves book. We bought every relevant publication we could find. Our laptop favorites became a localized version of the Library of Congress Card Catalog for Italy. And we listened to our Italian language CD and practiced our new found love for the Italian culture daily. And even though no one thought we were local, I do think they appreciated our willingness to understand their language, which is, after all, the door to any culture.

A word here about the Ugly American Syndrome. If you refuse to learn their language, if you demand an American style hotel and if you act as though their world revolves around yours, you will be branded with that most uncomplimentary title and you will be just another American tourist. Just don't do it!!! Rick Steves gives great advice when he tells us to live like a local. Don't misunderstand. Europeans, particularly Italians, love Americans. It's a behavioral attitude thing. If you make every attempt to follow Mr. Steves' advice, you will not just be a traveler in a strange land. You will absorb everything that makes that culture unique and wonderful. In Italy, we became one with everything we encountered. It's like Beethoven's Fifth Symphony or McCartney's Yesterday - It is more than just the music, the sounds, the food or even the people. It becomes part of your mind, body and soul.

So what does all of this have to do with my assertion that visiting Italy was an epiphany? If you truly try to "fit in" and relish every unique, quirky and "un-American" aspect of a country, you will take something important from your visit that will always stay with you. Italy and its people have a passion for their culture, their food and their way of life that is unmatched anywhere in the world. Any culture that has given us real pizza and opera must be appreciated at every level. Any Nomad worth his/her salt is desirous to get as close to and absorb as much of the reality of Italy as possible. To be a true Nomad you must go where tourists do not go and experience the people, local customs and unique culture of a country. Italy has it all - great food, great wine, world class museums, architectural antiquities, great small hotels and wonderful people. But the hidden corners of Tuscany provide a richness and joy of life that must be experienced firsthand to be appreciated.

After spending the night in an elegant B&B located in the ancient hill town of Montepulciano that has been in the same family for seven hundred years, we drove with great anticipation to our central Tuscany destination, Castello di Tornano, a small boutique hotel designed within the original walls of a medieval castle tower originally built in the tenth century. We arrived about three in the afternoon ,very hungry, as we could not locate a place to eat in the hills of Tuscany on a Sunday afternoon. This turned out to be very advantageous for us. The hotel manager, Massimo, met us upon arrival, and whisked us three flights up to our room to ensure that it was acceptable to us. With a bed right out of an Italianate palace, a bathroom fit for a duke or duchess and views of the Tuscany countryside through three foot thick stone walls, I assured Massimo that the room would indeed do. Without so much as a moment's hesitation, Massimo dispatched his young assistant to fetch our luggage and quickly transport it to our room. So far pretty good, right? Well, it gets better.

I asked Massimo if we might get some snacks or something to eat, as we had not eaten since that morning. After being ushered to a small table on the terrace overlooking the hills of Tuscany, Massimo and his assistant sprang into action. After being seated, a small umbrella was unfurled over our heads and plates of food began to appear, along with a bottle of their own estate wine. Bruschetta, prosciutto, risotto, cheeses,vegetables and Italian bread was laid before us as though we were the only people in their little kingdom. On this lazy spring Sunday afternoon, with the woman that I fell in love with even before I met her, this fabulous impromptu Italian meal was eaten with intense delight, overlooking one of the most romantic places on earth. We were suspended between heaven and earth. Actors on the set of the perfect drama.

Since Castello di Tornano is well off the beaten path, all of our meals were included as part of our stay. And just like the Sunday afternoon feast, the other meals did not disappoint. Everything was local, simply prepared and served with a smile. As we prepared to leave for the next leg of our Tuscan holiday, we knew that we had been immersed in the very essence of all that is Italian. Heading south to Umbria, there simply was no doubt that we had experienced a special place of elegance and beauty that any Nomad would be proud to call home, even if only for a short while.

La Dolce Vita Divertiti


  • Stayed April 2011, travelled as a couple
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2 Thank DOYLE S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Singapore, Singapore
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 July 2011

When we arrived, there was construction going on in the garden where we were supposed to have our breakfast. The following day, the tap water suddenly stopped flowing when I was in my room washing up. Not sure if it was due to the construction pipings. When I called the front desk to rectify the problem, they did not get back to be when the problem was fixed. Last day of check out, there were charges that weren't spelled out clearly and we were told that it was included in our bill. Dinner was really expensive and not worth the price and the free WIFI that was mentioned is only available downstairs the restaurant before it closes and not in the rooms.

  • Stayed July 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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5 Thank edphua
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
castellotornano, Manager at Castello di Tornano, responded to this review, 16 July 2011
Dear Ed Phua,

we thank you for your review and we appreciate it as we appreciate all the comments from our guests. All comments will help us to improve and to get better and better, but I would like to point out something - just in order not to create wrong impression in other guests:
- when you arrived we apologized for the working under the sail and we immediately informed you that it was something that was to be solved on the next day. And this was it - breakfast and dinner under the sail were not affected at all from the works as the works started after breakfast - stopped at 05:00 p.m. and continued the next day after breakfast to be finished definitively at 01:00 p.m..
I apologize again for it, but when something unexpected happens we have to solve it and we solved it immediately with the minimum inconvience to all the guests;
- when you called the reception to inform us about the problem we said that we will check immediately - and when you came down after 10 minutes we asked if it was ok, because we had found the problem and we had fixed it. If you would have waited another 3 minutes in the room you could have found out that the trouble was solved;
- about the charges: I am sorry I don't know what you are referring to as by every (with no exception) check-out, we first print out the details of the check-out and explain to the guests what they are for. Only if they agree with it we print out the official bill. So I don't understand why you didn't ask at check-out what was not clear enough to you;
- dinner: it includes starters, soup, first course, second meat course with vegetables and dessert. It costs 40 euro/person and we are not here a "Trattoria" or an "Osteria" but we are a castle (with different costs and different menu and location...). You are not forced to have dinner here (and you were told many times, when agencies called for information on your behalf, that this was not a place to come without car), and it was not our problem if you couldn't find a transfer at a suitable price to go for dinner outside.
- wi-fi: your wife was using it for hours in front of the reception and in the courtyard of the castle. How can you think that it is not anymore available if the restaurant closes?? It is also available in the main common areas outside and inside.

I am sorry that you didn't enjoy your stay here, as all our efforts are for a nice stay of all our guests, but I think this was maybe more your fault than ours, and you also gave us a "one" on cleanliness, service and quality of sleeps, where I think that you really cannot say anything about them.

Kind regards,

Maura Marasca
Castello di Tornano
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Castello di Tornano

Property: Castello di Tornano
Address: Localita Tornano SNC, 53013 Gaiole in Chianti, Italy
Region: Italy > Tuscany > Province of Siena > Gaiole in Chianti
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 38 Speciality Lodging in Gaiole in Chianti
Price range (per night): $191 - $330
Hotel Class:3 star — Castello di Tornano 3*
Number of rooms: 17
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Castello Di Tornano is located on a hillside in the Chianti Classico wine region. It offers free Wi-Fi, free parking, and rooms and apartments with satellite TV and bathroom. Rooms at the Castello are air conditioned and include a minibar. The apartments offer a fully fitted kitchen. The restaurant at the Castello Di Tornano serves Tuscan specialities and classic Italian cooking. The swimming pool is set in gardens and surrounded by trees. There is a tennis court, and guests can also enjoy the spa bath and massage treatments. The Castello Di Tornano Farm Stay is 18 km from Siena. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Castello Di Tornano Hotel Gaiole In Chianti
Castello Di Tornano Gaiole In Chianti, Italy - Tuscany

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