We booked the Grand Hotel Villa Cora for 5 nights based on the latest reviews from Tripadvisor, (post Dec 2011) even though the older ones were what peeked out interest. We were looking for a quite but within walking distance hotel to Frienze center.
My wife and I arrived in Frienze airport in the early afternoon and took a taxi to the hotel,
(note: every taxi driver we had knew instantly where the hotel was).
Upon arrival at the hotel (we should use the term Villa as you feel more like walking into a private home than a hotel) we were immediately struck by the quality and sense of history of the place.
There is no conventional hotel desk area but rather a informal (personal) small table with a couple of chairs near the entrance where you check in, which was polite, quick and efficent. You are then invited to take a tour of the property and given the history of the Villa. The staff are justifiably proud of the Hotel and the surrounding grounds.
I has seen the pictures on the internet and read several reviews but was still not expecting such quality and attention to detail. My wife who had only seen a few pictures was completety blown away. (She said afterwards that she felt like a princess in a palace).
Words do not do it justice. Here are the facts.
Location - excellent (they have shuttle till 8 pm always available and the taxi ride back to the Villa never exceeded 12 euros)
Rooms - excellent (we had a top floor one in the Villa with a terrace and a view of Frienze, it was quite, very well appointed and dare I say it - romantic)
Staff - excellent ( polite, professional, personable - they remember your name and make you feel welcome)
Amenities - excellent ( the restaurant food was some of the best we had on our vacation and the wine list layout charming, breakfast made starting the day elegant and relaxed:
we had drinks most everynight - either after dinner at the hotel or arriving late back from Frienze, it was a great way to end the day sitting in one of the many salons or on the trrrace and being transported back in time to a more genteel age)
I sorry to say we did not have time to try the pool or spa as we were on the go every day.
Overall an "hotel" stay we will remember (and compare others to) forever.
Thank you Villa Cora and your amazing and gracious staff.
Linda and David Leonard
Paradise, NL, Canada
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- VILLA CORA is a 5 star resort located in a 19th century mansion with a large park, bordering the gardens along Viale dei Colli, within walking distance from Boboli and Oltrarno and considered the "grand lady" of Florence southern hills. Its 46 rooms and suites, heated pool in the park, Gourmet's Restaurant and Spa make it the ultimate, exquisitely sophisticated "city resort". ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Grand Hotel Florence
- Grand Hotel Cora