For those who have a love affair with Italy, we recommend heading down to the picturesque town of Montecatini Terme within the Tuscan province of Pistoia. Many vacationers know Montecatini as a spa region, home to Tuscany’s most famous spas and revered for its thermal waters. The first baths were constructed here during the 16th century; since then, Montecatini has been the go-to destination for leisurely spa experiences in grand settings such as the stunning Terme di Montecatini Spa.
Montecatini’s star-spa status comes with a host of accommodation options – there are at least 150 hotels to choose from. The Sybarite recommends – with our usual predilection for places that are rare and truly one of a kind – a villa that offers an authentic, unique Italian experience. Located approximately 40 minutes from Pisa and Florence and a few kilometres from Pistoia, Villa Parri is an historic residence that was built in the 19th century by Parri. (Parri designed central Italy’s first railway line on behalf of the Grand Duke of Tuscany.)
In 2013, Villa Parri was renovated to offer luxury villa accommodation, including six beautifully decorated apartment suites and two deluxe rooms, along with ‘a panoramic swimming pool, a relaxation area with a jacuzzi and a wine cellar for tasting, all inside a private park with an exclusive nature trail between Tuscan cypresses, fruit trees and magnolias’.
Villa Parri is set in a rather isolated location atop the Tuscan hills – the panoramic views easily seen from the villa’s lemon garden and rooms leave one awestruck. Each room is decorated in a subtle manner and the bed and bath fabrics are a special treat: The villa’s owners apparently run their own textile business and all the luxurious sheets, pillow cases, towels and carpets found in the rooms are handmade in their factory.
For a breath of fresh air, the villa’s garden is the place to be. It overlooks the Tuscan hills in a quiet atmosphere punctuated only by the wind rustling through the trees – and perhaps the occasional meow of Villa Parri’s resident cat.
The hotel’s owners grow their own tomatoes and lemons, which are served each morning at the daily breakfast buffet table. In true Tuscan style, Villa Parri preserves its authenticity – all produce is home-grown and you can tell when you taste it.
Villa Parri, though not your typical world-class hotel, is a unique and worthwhile experience: Even when it rains, being content is inescapable.
If you happen to be thinking about getting married in Tuscany or Montecatini, Villa Parri is able to host wedding parties and can accommodate approximately 40 guests.