This story is part of our 'Unforgettable hotel nights' series, featuring tales from luxury hotel guests which were sent in for our recent travel writing competition.
I think I was almost as excited about our mini-moon break at Monsignor della Casa Country Resort, in Tuscany, as I was about our wedding and it certainly didn’t disappoint.
We arrived at dusk and were welcomed to the estate by a stunning field of scorched sunflowers. Inside the gates, and nestled in a typically romantic Tuscan setting, were an intimate number of rustic buildings. The staff checking us in were as warm as the late summer evening on which we’d arrived and any fears I had of being disappointed by our choice of where to spend the three days following our perfect wedding were immediately allayed.
We’d booked an apartment but since I’d mentioned it was our honeymoon, were escorted to a small ‘villa’ instead. There, a bottle of Prosecco awaited us, as did an immaculately decorated interior; subtly extravagant in a way that only the Italians seem to pull off. I will always remember the king-sized bed with the crispest cotton sheets I have ever felt and which made me vow never again to compromise on cheap bed linen.
After settling in we went outside to the courtyard dining area. By now the sun was setting behind a row of cypress trees on the hill and the whole estate was bathed in a delicious orange light. The candles on the outdoor tables had been lit and another two or three couples were supping aperitifs ahead of their meals.
Each night at Monsignor della Casa, a different speciality chef would come and prepare a simple five-star menu. As I recall it was a fish night. We ate and drank into the evening and towards the end of the meal broke our romantic tête-a-tête to join in with some wine-induced lively conversation with our fellow diners.
We returned to our villa but despite the fact that this was the loveliest room I’d ever slept in with the most comfortable bed and luscious sheets, I couldn’t sleep. It may have been the excitement of having just married, or the fact that I didn’t want to miss one moment of being in this place. Either way, I knew from then on that I would have to return again and again.
Despite passing in a dreamy haze from my lack of sleep and still being drunk on the romance of it all, the following day was as memorable as the night before. It went like this: a long breakfast infused with strong Italian coffee; followed by a long lounge by our private pool; an afternoon siesta accompanied by only the sound of our own breathing, a short-lived tennis game, a stroll in the sunflower field, and dinner and possibly the best nights’ sleep I’ve ever had.
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