San Gimignano is a small walled medieval hill town in the province of Siena, Tuscany, in north-central Italy. Known as the Town of Fine Towers, San Gimignano is famous for its medieval architecture, unique in the preservation of about a dozen of its tower houses, which, with its hilltop setting and encircling walls form an unforgettable skyline. The town also is known for the white wine, Vernaccia di San Gimignano, produced from the ancient variety of Vernaccia grape which is grown on the sandstone hillsides of the area. The beautiful "Historic Centre of San Gimignano", is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Baker and Cristian have just completed a sympathetic and loving restoration of the centuries old farm into their luxury retreat bed and breakfast. Begun in the 17th century with thick stone walls, it has now seen centuries of expansion. It evolved first as a feudal farm, one of many on an enormous estate, Locanda dell’ Artista was equipped with two stone out-buildings, one a fienile or barn for the threshing and storage of grain and the other, a capanna, or shed which was home to herds of sheep. The main building, a classic Tuscan casa colonica or farmhouse, was a originally a humble structure designed and built for function with the materials at hand.
Today, the elegantly refurbished casa colonica is now devoted entirely to its Tuscan villa bed and breakfast vacationers. The ground floor boasts an expansive two story entrance hall, a kitchen, a dining room, a drawing room with a grand piano, game table and majestic stone fireplace. Also on the ground floor is a guest room with private garden patio. Five more spacious and bright guest rooms are found on the first floor, each with en suite bath. Completing its luxury transformation into the 21st century, a large stone salt-water swimming pool has been integrated into the olive grove just below the main building supplying 180 degree sweeping views of the rolling Tuscan countryside and San Gimignano. Locanda dell' Artista’s modern country inn-style interior design features a harmonious blend of antiques, modern art and modern furnishings from Baker and Cristian's private collection with original works by such artists and designers like: Alexander Calder, Gio Ponti, Robert Motherwell, Tracey Emin, Robert Mapplethorpe, Michael Eastman, Helen Frankenthaler, Frits Henningsen, and Sol LeWitt.
Sir Elton John and David Furnish say, "Smart, sophisticated, friendly and charming are the words we use to describe our good friends Baker Bloodworth and Cristian Rovetta, and are sure to be the hallmark qualities of their new boutique hotel. We couldn’t be happier for them, and can hardly wait to visit and know their Locanda will be filled with joy, laughter and love for years to come".
If you are planning a trip to Tuscany that should be pampering, restful and relaxing, yet you wish to avail yourself of all that Tuscany has to offer, Locanda dell' Artista is a perfect home base. Though they do offer a gorgeous and private country setting, they are not isolated. Strategically situated between Florence and Siena, you will find all of the sights in Tuscany accessible within a 30-90 minute drive. The hotel can be booked either directly or online.