But despite an hour driving through this oh-so- stunning scenery from Florence, Belmond Castello di Casole still took my breath away.
This 10th-century hillside castle stands majestically, lord of all it surveys – in this case, its own 4200-acre private estate. Fittingly, inside is equally regal. Antiques galore, sumptuous furnishings, faultless service (as you'd expect from Belmond)… grand yes, but very quiet and private, a charming rural hideaway.
I loved every room and suite in the main building having its own unique style and feel – terracotta tones and original tiled floors giving a real sense of place. My spacious Junior Suite Deluxe couldn't have felt more authentically Italian if it tried.
But whether you choose something in the historic main building, or the contemporary Oliveto or Limonia Suites set within the grounds, the bathrooms here are sure to make your jaw fall to the floor!