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- Karen Brown's Recommendation:
The hills immediately surrounding Florence, dotted with stately villas and country homes dating back to the Renaissance, offered Florentine aristocrats cool respite in summer from the higher temperatures in the city below. The gracious Bulleri family chose this alternative to the city some 30 years ago, and after a successful career in the fashion industry, Claudio and Paola transformed their splendid wooded property into a top-notch inn for discerning guests. Nine very comfortable, immaculate rooms, personally decorated by Paola, have been created in a house across from the family’s villa. This includes an elegant main living and dining room with fireplace and large windows looking out over the garden. Classic-style bedrooms have parquet floors, matching fabrics for beds and drapes, and spacious sparkling-white bathrooms. Amenities include satellite TV, wireless Internet, mini-bar, safe, air conditioning, and a selection from the wine cellar. A full country breakfast is served out in the gazebo (in winter sliding glass doors keep the gazebo warm). The swimming pool has gorgeous hillside views over olive groves. The Bulleris share their personal lifestyle: charming son Lorenzo assists guests with local itineraries, guides and museum or concert ticketing, and Paola conducts cooking lessons, while Claudio accompanies guests to his nearby golf club.