Albergo Villa Casanova

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Albergo Villa Casanova

Date of travel

Jun, 2012

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On arrival at L’Albergo Casanova we were greeted by David who showed to our room on the 3rd floor.Well… when I say room, I mean suite!!! It was amazing! (see photos). This boutique hotel on the outskirts of Lucca now has the top rating on Trip Advisor – it is rather expensive but perfect for a special occasion. They even have a chapel there (see photo) where you can receive blessings but sadly not weddings at the present time. As we entered our suite there was a lounge area with a large flat screen TV mounted on the wall and a comfortable sofa and coffee table. There was also a fridge, tea/coffee making facilities and a writing desk. There is also a safe . The bedroom (see photos) was very spacious with views overlooking the beautiful countryside and you could see one of the Lucca towers in the distance. Next to the large wardrobe there was an even bigger flat screen TV behind cupboard doors. There was plenty of hanging/drawer space, a table and bedside cabinets too as well as an easy chair in the corner. The bed was extremely comfortable and luxurious.

Then there was the huge bathroom – some hotels rooms we have stayed in are not this big! (see photos). The shower cubicle was an amazing 2 metre square (approx) and contained a variety of L’Occitane toiletries – there was also an emergency call cord – particularly useful for older less infirm guests. The shower was so good it was only my “green” conscience about wasting water that made me get out!! There was an old fashioned modesty screen strategically placed near the toilet which was a nice touch. There was a lovely free standing rolltop bath and double sink unit. Plenty of fluffy towels and a bathrobe each .Inside the cabinets there was a decent hairdryer too.

That evening Bruno, the chef who we had been introduced to earlier on did us proud. The menu wasn’t extensive (see photo) but the choice was sufficient and the wine list contained a good selection – the cheapest being around 30 euros. You could choose a specific wine selection for 22 euros each and wines complementing each course would be served. The couple on the next table chose this option and we heard David explain which region each wine originated from and the grape variety etc. The Dining room was smaller than expected but during the busier summer months dinner is also served on the terrace. However the food was superb and nicely presented – tasting every bit as good as it looked. The grapefruit & smoked salmon appetiser tasted amazing!! (Especially considering I don’t like smoked salmon). The risotto rose with gorgonzola, pear & almond was delicious. (The price for 2 courses & dessert was 50 euros each and 65 euros for 3 courses & dessert).

Breakfast the following morning could be taken inside or on the terrace – we chose the terrace but sadly it began to rain lightly a few moments later but the staff quickly put up the parasols to prevent us from getting wet! We were asked if we would like anything cooked – eggs /omelette etc but we decided to stay with the buffet offering of fresh fruit salad (really nice), yoghurts and a selection of fresh mini pastries which were absolutely delicious! Coffee was really good and a selection of tea bags were offered along with a pot of hot water. The only negative was that all the food on display was left uncovered – although it was inside the Dining area we did notice a few flies around.

I asked Michela (asst Manager) about the guests who stayed at L’albergo Casenova – she explained it was popular with couples (especially those celebrating a special birthday/ anniversary for example) but they are only occasionally accompanied with small children staying with them. Guests were a mixture of age groups and from many parts of Europe and also America. ”Repeater” guests are often offered a complimentary dinner and may benefit from a room upgrade. Sadly on the evening we stayed there was only one other couple in the hotel who were from Australia. The bar and Lounge areas were empty so think the atmosphere would have been better had there been more guests staying there.

The infinity pool looks out over countryside and Lucca can be seen in the distance (see photo). Sadly it was very overcast on the day we were there so we didn’t get to have a dip in the pool! There are some gardens adjacent to the pool with quite a few shrubs,lavender plants and flowering plants and there is a lower terrace with more tables & chairs.

Apparently work is being undertaken to create more affordable rooms – possibly self catering – in the adjacent building and a spa is being considered which would be a perfect addition to this beautiful hotel.

English is spoken so no worries if your Italian isn’t up to scratch but I did try and speak Italian where possible and all the staff were appreciative of my efforts!

Many activities can be arranged by the Hotel which include tickets (&transfers) to Open Air concerts held at a nearby Lake. Bike hire, Photography, Birds of Prey sightings. There is some lovely artwork displayed throughout the hotel and I would imagine the scenery would appeal to anyone who wishes to relax by sketching, painting etc.

There is wheelchair access via ramps and a lift to all floors. The pool had a few shallow steps but no handrail to help access. There are car parks to the rear of the hotel but luggage can be left at the entrance where assistance will be given.

Although it was very luxurious I felt it was the sort of place you should stay for at least a few days (if you could afford to at around 470 euros per night for B&B!) to get a balance between sightseeing and relaxing in such lovely peaceful surroundings along with superb food and service.

Maria Meredith

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