Located in the heart of Tuscany’s enchanting Chianti wine region, Villa Ardore is an elegantly restored 16th-century stone farmhouse inviting guests to experience La Dolce Vita in the most authentic setting.
The intimate yet expansive three-acre estate is the passion project of California-based attorney Christian Scali and screenwriter Stephen Lewis, who were determined to find their dream vacation home in the Italian countryside. The villa’s name draws inspiration from Ardore, Italy, the ancestral village of Christian’s family, where the word “ardore” means “to live with passion.” Guests are encouraged to wholeheartedly embrace themselves and lead a fulfilling life while vacationing here.
Villa Ardore comprises two buildings with eight guest rooms and an office suite that can transform into a ninth room. The grand communal spaces, adorned with bespoke artwork from local artists, include a living room with a traditional fireplace, a posh dining room that seats 18, and a reclaimed antique Parisian bar, which have each been meticulously curated by Scali and Lewis, making the villa exceptionally well-designed.
The main villa pays homage to its ancient lookout tower heritage with rustic elegance, retaining its original architecture, including exposed stone walls, wood beams, vintage armoires, and terracotta-tiled floors. Contemporary accents like deluxe king-sized beds clothed in plush duvets and modern light fixtures, along with spacious bathrooms featuring beautiful marble-slabbed rain showers, ensure a comfortable and sophisticated experience for guests.
Inside the converted barn, two more guest rooms reside in a slightly different tone with modern Tuscan farmhouse interiors: white-washed wooden beams, light-colored shag rugs, and expansive windows giving way to natural sunlight brightening these chambers. Almost everything is locally sourced from Tuscany, except for the reclaimed hardwood flooring in the barn’s entryway, which originates from an Indian schoolhouse and contains real hand-carved sketches, adding a bona fide feel.
It’s Italy, after all, so there’s plenty of incredible Italian food while staying at the villa. Guests start their mornings with a beautifully assorted breakfast buffet: freshly baked pastries, a meat and cheese platter, and even eggs selected from the on-site chicken coop prepared any way they like. For dinner, guests can enjoy a private chef-prepared meal al fresco, which can be either mouthwatering pizza straight from the outdoor pizza oven or a specially crafted menu highlighting the prominent flavors of Tuscany. (Think: Beef braised for 12 hours in Chianti wine accompanied by sautéed black cabbage.)
After a day of exploring neighboring Tuscan towns, there’s nothing better than making use of Villa Ardore’s dazzling amenities: a show-stopping saltwater infinity-edge pool lined with Cypress trees that overlooks the rolling vineyards below, along with a private spa featuring a centerpiece jacuzzi, a dry sauna, a sensory shower, and a Turkish steam bath, all awaiting guests before the evening.
With its flawless design, pristine amenities, and welcoming hospitality, Villa Ardore offers a genuine connection to the essence of Tuscany, allowing guests to experience the enchantment of this renowned Italian countryside.
Location: Tuscany, Italy
Address: Localita Marciano, 1, 50028 Barberino Val D’elsa FI, Italy
The vibe: An authentic, high-design Italian villa where guests can imagine the stay is their own private home in the Tuscan countryside.
Our favorite thing about the hotel: Aside from the jaw-dropping Cyprus-tree-lined outdoor infinity pool, our favorite thing about Villa Ardore is undoubtedly the company. Francesco, the Villa Manager, Christian, and Stephen are incredible hosts and make your time at the villa truly spectacular.
Amenities: Outdoor swimming pool; Spa; Bar; Breakfast included; Toiletries; Hairdryer; Laundry
Any neighborhood recommendations? With the assistance of Villa Manager Francesco, we highly recommend visiting Panzano in Chianti and the renowned Butcher Shop run by the eighth-generation Italian butcher Dario Cecchini, spotlighted on Chef’s Table and known as one of the world’s most famous butchers.
What’s nearby? Castellina; Panzano; San Donato; San Gimignano (UNESCO World Heritage Site); Florence; Siena
Rooms: Eight ensuite guest rooms that can sleep up to 18 people.
Pricing: Rates start at 6,435 EUROS/night. Renting the entire villa for a minimum of five nights. Breakfast and airport transportation are included in the total cost.
Closest Airport: Florence Airport (FLR)