Fodor's Expert Review Villa Aurora

Piazza Mino da Fiesole 39, Fiesole, Tuscany 50014, Italy See on Map

This villa, perched atop the hills of Fiesole, has a royal history having played host to the Queen of England, King of Belgium, Queen Margherita of Italy, and others in the 19th-century. Today, the hotel still serves up majestic views that reach down to Florence, and a host of amenities that won’t exactly make you feel regal, but they’ll make you comfortable.

room

Standard rooms are fairly plain, and a bit dated, with hardwood floors, wooden headboards, and flat screen TVs. Opt for the suite with the frescoed ceiling and balcony for insane views of Florence below.

Don’t miss out on the mini bar as it’s free!

bathroom

Tile floors give way to shower/bath combos and bidets but there’s not much else. Profumeria Inglese products are typical.

lobby

The lobby is more of an area for checking in or checking out – there’s not much in terms of hanging out space.

pool

Open seasonally from June to August, the wood-decked outdoor pool is a welcome respite on scorching hot late summer days. Views are pretty stellar as well.

dining

Indoor and outdoor space make the picturesque restaurant the best part of the hotel with endless views of the city below. Tuscan cuisine is on hand for breakfast, lunch, and dinner as well as a wide range of Tuscan wines.

Photo: Spinatsalat. In der #villaaurora . . #spinat #salat #spinatsalat #villaaurora #villaaurora
Photo: Special private dinner back in March, at #VillaAurora #Rome a private home of Princess Rita Boncompagni Ludovisi and her late husband. The house hosts the only private #Caravaggio painted ceiling known, among many other wonderful art pieces. #ludovisi

drinking

Also open seasonally, Blu Bar is one of the most trafficked spots in Fiesole for drinkers (there aren’t a ton of other options) and offers a solid apperitivo and classic cocktails to go along with views of Florence.

LOCATION

Getting Around

Fiesole is at the top of mountain looking down over Florence, so walking around here is hilly – but doable. There are a few museums and archeological sites as well as a couple restaurants and shops to peruse. Getting here from Florence requires a drive though – either catch the bus, hail an expensive taxi, or simply rent a car. Parking at the hotel is free.

Restaurants

One of the best views to go along with Florentine food is the uber-romantic Ristorante La Reggia Degli Etruschi (3-minute walk) on the way to the San Francesco Monastery. You’ll need a car, but it’s worth driving to Trattoria Tullio A Montebeni (12-minute drive) for a rustic Michelin-star meal in an unpretentious setting.

Bars

Blu Bar at the hotel is likely your best option, but if you need to get a real cocktail fix, head down the road to Villa San Michele (6-minute drive) where expert bartenders mix up clever concoctions.

WHY WE LIKE IT

Bottom line – there’s nothing quite like the views of Florence from the top of the hill in Fiesole – and this hotel has that view in spades. A friendly staff will definitely make you feel welcome in this historic property, and there are enough (seasonal) amenities to make it a destination. The hotel could probably make do with an upgrade, but you’ll still find clean rooms, a solid restaurant and bar, and a pool with more picturesque vistas.

QUICK FACTS

Historical, Pet Friendly, Views
23 rooms, 2 suites
Breakfast Yes
Lunch Yes
Dinner Yes
Bar Yes
Cafe Yes
Room Service Yes
$$
Pool
Free
Free Parking
Yes

HOTEL INFO

Phones: 055-59363;055-59368

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