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Gaiole in Chianti: B&B Borgo Argenina

15 km from Siena, Phone: 0577.747228

Reviewed by: JoanJEFFox from IL, review #1191

When: September 2005

Borgo Argenina is the perfect Tuscan B&B. Hospitality is superior, English spoken fluently, beautiful view, excellent company, highest rating.

This was my first stay in a B&B, and first trip to Italy. My husband and I are in our 50's and found this restored hamlet to be the perfect start to our vacation. The location is very convenient to Siena, and many short day trips to interesting Arezzo, San Gimignano, wine country, etc. We had some wonderful, expensive multi-course dinners, and some great neighborhood family style dinners nearby.

I can't say enough about our hostess Elena and her daughter Firenze. They are generous, energetic and such amazing goodwill ambassadors for their region. (By the way, not to be confused with the neighbor "argenina" ---BORGO ARGENINA--completely different.)

The breakfasts satisfied us until dinner! Breakfast is just as it appears on the website and, yes, you can buy peccorino from the shepherd in a nearby town, he'll even vacuum pack it for you. This, and more, Elena will give you instructions if you wish. We found our fellow travelers to be most interesting, and had several delightful conversations.

We chose a "double room" and with the "cash discount" it was 135/night. This room more than met our needs - - wonderful linen bedspread, antique/handmade touches everywhere, large room, breezy windows, dressing area and large bath. Daily re-stock of complimentary beverages in the in-room refrigerator. Having a cup of tea or coffee is allowed, using their breakfast room kitchen. Elena has decorated the three common area living rooms perfectly, and we shared some of their dinner overlooking the sublime countryside one day.

The stone terrace looks over a working vineyard, and olive trees in front, fresh figs from her tree, and some guests cooked fresh veggies from her garden for dinner. I believe she would get the highest rating! We met a couple who return each year - - we know why!!

Reviewed by: JanelH from IL, review #1033

When: May 2005

Captivating 10th century hamlet with absolute charm and character in the heart of the Chianti region.

Driving up the cypress lined road, we weren't ready for what we were about to discover. Borgo Argenina is a charming hamlet set amongst vineyards and olive groves on the S.S. 408 in the heart of the Chianti region. We were greeted by Elena Nappa, a woman of passion and taste who undertook the restoration of this wonderful piece of property.

There are varying rooms for all different needs of accommodations; double rooms, suites for three, little house for three and a villa for four, ranging in price from 150.00 to 400.00 for the upscale little house. The decor for each room varies slightly but all have large bathrooms, newly tiled showers, storage closets, mini-refrigerators and comfortable beds. If you are lucky enough to have a kitchen, it will be completely equipped with all the amenities as well as fresh herbs from the garden for your cooking pleasure. The common areas are no less charming with glorious gardens, pergolas, and deck chairs for your leisure and photographic memories.

Our first day there, Elena brought us into her kitchen and went over the surrounding areas - which wineries to go to, restaurant recommendations, poppy fields, mineral springs, and cities that suit your needs best. Then she tucked it into a neat little folder and sent us on our way - after making dinner reservations for us.

Breakfast at Borgo Argenina was no less than way above average. Fresh home-made coffee cake every day, American style coffee, fresh homemade yogurt, fruit, juices and a variety of delicious cereals.

The common areas of this B&B are frescoed and warm with inviting sitting areas and tables for planning your day. Of the places we stayed during our two week stay in Italy, this was our favorite. We would not hesitate to recommend this delight of a place and it's hostess.

This review is the opinion of a Slow Travel member and not of slowtrav.com.

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