Castelletto di Montebenichi luxury vacation apartments

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Montebenichi and the Castelletto di Montebenichi

Montebenichi and Castelletto di Montebenichi luxury vacation apartments

Montebenichi in the Valdambra between the Chianti Aretino and the Chianti Siennese

Village of Montebenichi
Village of Montebenichi




Montebenichi is located in the municipality of Bucine in the Province of Arezzo of Tuscany. The village is situated on a hilltop between the Chianti Aretino and the Chianti Senesi, dominating the Valdambra, right on the border with the municipalities of Gaiole in Chianti and Castelnuovo Berardenga. Montebenichi is an ancient, well-preserved village with a population of about 15 people, at about 510 meters above sea level. The views from the village are truly splendid, sweeping across the Crete Senesi to Monte Amiata in the south, Cortona in the east and Sienna and beyond in the west.

It is likely that near the village there was originally a Lombard settlement, as evidenced by the discovery in the area of ​​a sarcophagus from the Lombard era now preserved in the palaeontological museum of Montevarchi. The first documentary mention of Montebenichi dates back to the 8 C and concerns the parish church of Santa Maria in Altaserra which may be found 300 m before the village of Montebenichi, built on a pre-existing cemetery site, probably Etruscan.

History of Montebenichi

Montebenichi was originally a fortress built in the first half of the 12 C. At the beginning of the following century, its existence is reported as a fortified point in the document with which the podestà of Poggibonsi fixed the borders between the republics of Sienna and Florence on 4 June 1203. For several centuries, Montebenichi and Valdambra represented a land of conflict and conquest alternating between Florence and Sienna. In 1478, Giovanni della Rovere, prefect of Rome and nephew of Pope Sixtus IV, besieged the castle of Brolio during the war against Florence. In order to procure provisions, he put the fortress of Montebenichi to the sword, despite the courageous resistance of its inhabitants and burnt it to the ground. In 1557 the Valdambra with Montebenichi became part of the Grand Duchy of Tuscany entrusted to the Medici. In this period, the lord of Montebenichi was Gregorio di Benedetto Stendardi, later known as Capitan Goro, a mercenary leader in the service of the Grand Duke of Tuscany.

Castelletto di Montebenichi
Castelletto di Montebenichi

Sights of Montebenichi

As you climb up towards Montebenichi, you come to the church of Santa Maria Assunta in Altaserra, a pieve (parish church) of early Christian origin surrounded by cypresses and olive trees. This church was rebuilt during the 12 C. Inside this parish church there are a baptismal font and a stone stoup carved in 1596 and 1574respectivel.

At the entrance of this delightful village stands the Palazzo Stendardi, situated in front of the neglected Church of Madonna del Conforto, which houses a well-preserved image of the venerated Madre Misericordia is well preserved. The Palazzo Stendardi is nestled amid black pines, cypresses and graceful gardens. The Palazzo is named after the famous Gregorio Stendardi, known as Goro da Montebenichi, captain of the militant troops of Giovanni delle Bande Nere, and valorous captain i n the service of Francesco Ferrucci, loyal to the point of making a shield with his own person in an attempt to save his captain.

Equally fascinating is the building that dominates Piazza Gorizia, the central focus of Montebenichi, where there is a beautiful ancient well.The structure in question is the “Castelletto”, the original castle of the fortress, restored in refined neo-gothic architecture by the painter Salvadore Malesci. The wonderful neogothic decorations on the façade are worth a visit. The Castelletto is now a very charming boutique hotel offering four apartments – see below.

Castelletto di Montebenichi luxury vacation apartments
Castelletto di Montebenichi luxury vacation apartments

Castelletto di Montebenichi luxury vacation apartments

The Castelletto di Montebenichi is located in the Chianti, half way between Sienna and Arezzo. Staying at the Castelletto in one of their four luxury apartments is a magic experience offered to a few guests only who will have the opportunity to enjoy the art collection housed in the Castelletto di Montebenichi, including period frescoes, archaeological finds, sketches and antique paintings, drawings, sculptures, bronzes and ceramics. In this 12 C palazzo, tradition and modern comfort are combined perfectly. Guests are encouraged to move freely as in their own homes, in a comfortable and familiar, yet elegant and exclusive environment. In our gardens, guests may enjoy the swimming pool, a small sauna, and a gym with a jacuzzi mini-pool along with a marvellous view over the surrounding hills and the valley. The Castelletto has no dining room, but a short walk away, a wonderful trattoria called “L’Orciaia” offers excellent traditional Tuscan dishes.

More about staying at the Castelletto di Montebenichi.

More about staying at the Castelletto di Montebenichi.