This unusal B&B might be remote – at the end of a bumpy track, perched high above the town – but it is surprisingly sophisticated. Raffaele Bonaspetti, an elegant, spiritual man, bought the house (together with the hillside) as a 15thC ruin some 20 years ago. With ‘the spirit of the place’ in mind, he transformed both property and land, replanting the garden with olives, cypresses and laurels to satisfy his passion for trees.
Inside, every room is different, beautifully decorated and filled with exquisite things from polished mahogany antiques to a battered chest. One room has Alpine furniture, another remarkable painted lacquer beds. Raffaele inherited much of the futniture from his family and, with an unerring eye, picked up the rest in antique shops and markets. But his heart lies in the garden, some 10 hectares of trees, shrubs, herbs, flowers and waterfalls, criss-crossed by paths and dedicated to the five senses.
Breakfast is a delicious buffet of fruit, freshly squeezed orange juice, cold meats and cheese or, if you prefer, pancakes and eggs (from Raffaele’s own chickens). If it’s not warm enough to eat on the covered terrace, from where the view is superb, it is served in an attractive yellow room with a crackling fire. No smoking.