If ever you want to experience true "Italian" life and the people who make Italy the pleasure it is to both visit and live, I recommend you take your party to the Albergo Ristorante Portale. Located about 10 kilomters northeast of Cortona, in the beautiful Appenines mountains, the property provides the perfect tranquil setting for the true holiday experience. It's location will allow those who want the cultural experiences of the many Tuscan/Estruscan surrounding historical sites to take the day trip to their destination and return to one of the most peaceful, beautiful settings in central Italy.
To complement the quality of the hotel, Franco Lunghi and his lovely wife (and staff) made the dining experience "heavenly" with a sumptous mixture of "Italian" cusine that is sure to please the palate of everyone in your party. As we got to talk with Franco, we later learned that Frances Mayes ("Under the Tuscan Sun") used his whole staff to cater the premiere of the film in Los Angeles.
All who read this will wonder what the title has to do with the property. It was quite by accident that my wife and two friends happened on to this property. We were going to Cortona, by way of San Sepolcro, and decided to take the mountain route. We had climbed for quite some time when we came upon a dog (if you're a dog lover you'll understand what we mean), who was standing in the middle of the road looking dazed, confused and was obviously hurt. Our friend, who is even more of an animal lover than all of us put together, practically jumped out of the car to it's rescue. It had a collar and ID, but in Italian, and we knew that it was a hunting dog, since it's around the time of year when hunters use this type of dog for hunting wild boar. So wirh some coaxing, prodding, and finally just picking him up, we put him in the car and by a stroke of luck (some would say karma) we found Franco at the Albergo Portole. He took him and fed him, tracked down the owner and set up to have him returned. The rest as they say is history.
Go see Franco and say hello from the "canne" lovers!
RB & SB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC