Colors in Tuscany // Fontelunga

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When Tor found out he had been invited to attend a fan convention in Rome this spring, we knew Rome wasn’t going to be our only stop. Tuscany had been calling our names since our honeymoon there two years ago, and we knew this would be our chance to explore southern Tuscany. One thing I love to do is escape to the countryside, and we ended up discovering the perfect hidden gem in the perfect location called Fontelunga. Fontelunga is located about 30 minutes southwest of the Italian village of Cortona, which became famous with the book and film Under The Tuscan Sun. The villa is set up on a hill and our room overlooked a gorgeous Tuscan valley, which proved to be quite a relaxing view and even guaranteed us a front row seat to watching the afternoon thunderstorms roll in. When we first pulled up to the hotel, it felt like something out of a Wes Anderson film.

With vibrant colors that became more saturated in the sunlight and with symmetrical windows and doors, we fell in love with its quaint but unique vibe right away. Fontelunga isn’t like your typical hotel. We have been discovering we really like hotels that feel more like a home, as those kinds of places fall in that perfect category of “less fuss, more leisure”. There was no check-in desk. Instead, we were greeted with a very enthusiastic “hello” by our furry hosts for the weekend – Lucy and Charlie. Of course, since I was missing my own fur babies back home, I immediately became besties with Lucy and Charlie, and it was very easy to see why they were so extremely popular with the other guests.

If you’re looking for a place that combines luxury, comfort, convenience, and community, this is the kind of villa to stay at. We befriended the other guests staying that weekend in the villa (mostly Londoners), especially over breakfast and lunch. Each morning, we woke up to a smorgasbord of breakfast items. The sun would already be out (and strong!), so we would take our first meal of the day and sit outside. After enjoying a late morning at the pool, our hosts cooked us all a delicious Italian lunch of homemade pasta with tomatoes and mozzarella as well as bresaola with rocket (arugula) and parmesan. With our stomachs full, we spent one afternoon wine tasting in nearby Montepulciano where we stopped at a small, intimate winery called Montemercurio.

It was just Tor and I at the wine tasting, where we indulged in red wines that dated back to 2007. They even had a wine from 1990 – the year I was born! Usually in the late afternoons, thunderstorms would expectedly roll in and they quickly became a theme of our Tuscan adventures. Group dinners are cooked by the team at Fontelunga on Tuesday and Saturdays, but since we were there from Sunday to Tuesday afternoon, we missed out on those. Instead, the owners Paolo and Philip booked us into a dinner at the nearby La Lodola for our first night (where we squealed at La Ladola’s house cat all meal long). On our second night, we drove 30 minutes to Cortona where we dined at Osteria del Teatro.

Since I knew Fontelunga would be a colorful setting, I tried to have my wardrobe match. I couldn’t resist playing with different colors of the rainbow at such a gorgeous location. I had been saving this swimsuit specifically for this visit, since it matches the venue perfectly. It also comes in a bikini version as well as a polka dot version too! Then there’s the outfit of the moment – this two piece by MDS Stripes.

I have loved MDS Stripes skirts and dresses for a while now (I wore them on our anniversary trips last year to Santa Barbara and Napa), but this skirt couldn’t have been more perfect for visit to Fontelunga. It matched the scenery so well that I ended up wearing it twice during our stay!

I am already talking about returning to Fontelunga with friends next time, as it truly is the perfect gathering place for old friends and new friends. A luxury villa that feels like home nestled within the rolling Tuscan hills is just the perfect escape everyone needs.

Thank you to Paolo and Philip at Fontelunga for hosting our amazing stay. Although we were guests of Fontelunga, opinions are my own.
Photos by Torrance Coombs.

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  1. Francesca

    I couldn’t wait to read about your trip (i’m waiting for the next posts too, of course!). Fontelunga seems amazing! I live in Italy and Tuscany is one on my favourite region, with its magical landscapes, art and history (and food!); unfortunately the weather is not so good in this period… we’re waiting for the real summer which isn’t arrived yet 🙁 Can’t wait to read about Rome, since I’m gonna stay there for five days in September!

    • The A List

      It rained every day while we were in Italy but it was also sunny every day. The afternoon thunderstorms were quite fun, actually!

  2. Erika

    What a gorgeous post! You and Tor take incredible photos. Looking forward to seeing Rome and Wales especially! BTW I can totally relate to missing your cats… We just adopted a small grey and white tabby, and she already feels like a part of the family! I can’t imagine how tough 5.5 weeks away was!

    • The A List

      Thank you! And yes it was hard being away from them.

  3. Marina

    I’m so curious: when you are out traveling, what do you carry in your bags? What do you consider to be the essentials to have on you while you explore the city?

    PS: I’m traveling to Paris, Florence, and Rome this month. My friends were so excited when I showed them your blog to help with our planning. Thanks for all the hard work you put into this!

    • The A List

      I will do a post on this soon!

  4. ann lavine

    no cat photos. darn

    • The A List

      There weren’t any cats here, just dogs.