It's probably easier to think of your stay at Novanta as a relaxed gathering amongst friends, rather than a traditional Tuscan holiday - yet even this description doesn't go quite far enough!
Waiting for you at Novanta is an experience of Tuscan village life as it's so peacefully lived every day by the locals, immersed in nature and nestled high in the Casentino Hills. Think outstanding views, exceptionally friendly people and endless opportunities to learn new skills...this is a true creator's paradise where you can leave the demands of technology far behind.
Novanta (Italian for "ninety") found its life when four Dutch entrepreneurs discovered an abandoned village - Borgo di Gello - in the summer of 2014. Captivated by its charm, their goal was to open an experience-based pop-up hotel there for 90 days. An overwhelming and immediate success, the hotel lasted a whole lot longer, and is now a permanent fixture in the local community.
The accommodation at Novanta is diverse and wonderfully imaginative, suited to families, friends and couples alike. The Skylodge is ideal for romantic couples, with its outdoor bathroom, wooden terrace...and the real jewel in the crown, a Perspex roof set over a cosy four-poster king-sized bed. Nestled amongst the trees, you can stargaze to your heart's content!
The romantic Treehouse is created from a 200 year-old oak tree that provides exceptional scenes of the valley and the ancient village ruins below. Enjoy the outdoor shower with a view, as you seclude yourselves from the world in supreme comfort.
Meanwhile, up to four people can experience the sensation of floating amongst the stars with a stay in a Tentsile tent, complete with removable top and suspended within the branches of three huge village trees.
Of course, good food is always the prime focus in Italy, and Novanta offers an all-inclusive, mouthwatering food plan that caters for breakfast, lunch and a traditional four-course dinner served every day. With an honesty bar also available for which your bill can be settled on check-out - that's your food, drink and accommodation completely taken care of! Now it's time to immerse yourselves completely in the Tuscan way of life.
The mission at Novanta is to introduce you to the authentic local community, its lifestyle and its people. For starters, Borgo di Gello is surrounded by lush forests, sparkling streams and rolling hills, part of an official nature reserve it would be a shame not to get lost in at least once. Why not take a guided walk up the mountain through the forest and drink in the beauty of Santuario Francescano, one of the most admired monasteries in the area?
You'll have plenty of opportunity to meet the locals and learn new skills, from wine tasting at the local organic vineyard with owner Marco, to an invigorating mountain walk to the home of the local butcher Fabrizio and his wife Meri...where a traditional al-fresco Italian lunch will be served to you by the family (Meri's tiramisu is not to be missed!)
Meanwhile, learn how to make pasta the true Italian way with Fabrizio's mother, go on a foraging expedition, take an indulgent picnic at the river or perhaps try your hand at learning Italian. The opportunities to learn, explore and be enthralled really are endless here - and with Florence just 1.5 hours away by car, you can also enjoy a day out in one of the most beautiful cities in the world.
There aren't many holidays you can take that introduce you to a new and completely authentic way of life, in such a wonderfully warm, relaxed and captivating way. So why not come and see for yourselves what has made Novanta such a resounding success? With so much unique Tuscan community spirit, so many opportunities to learn, and so many new friends waiting to be made here, we guarantee one visit won't be enough!
Things to note
Pets are welcomed, children are also permitted. Weddings are possible in a private Tuscan village - the site has a church. New Year's Eve celebrations are also arranged, enquire for details. Food plans with local ingredients are available to pre-book, full board from €245 per week. Minimum stay 2 nights low season - please check site for high season.
Region: Bibbiena, Tuscany
Cost (from): £110 per night
Minimum stay: 2 nights (low season)
Property ref: 805
FacilitiesSkylodge sleeps 2, four poster double bed, bedding & towels provided, perspex roof, wood terrace, outdoor shower/toilet facility.
Treehouse sleeps 2, double bed, bedding & towels provided, terrace, table & chairs, outdoor shower/toilet facility.
Studios, Suites and Cottages are also available, please see the property's website for more details on each.
Truffle foraging, pasta making, Italian lessons, mushroom foraging, river picnics, walking, running trails, cycling, escape room, wine tasting.
At a glance
- Immerse yourselves in the real Tuscany, with a community-infused experience hotel set in the formerly abandoned village of Borgo di Gello, nestled in the natureful Casentino Hills.
- Fly to Florence, 1.5 hours from the hotel by car. The hotel offers an original Landrover Defender mountain shuttle service.
- The hotel provides an honesty bar, and an all-inclusive food plan that caters for breakfast, lunch and dinner on each day of your stay. Choose your accommodation from the romantic Skylodge or Treehouse for two, or a selection of family studios, suites and cottages.
- Hostel-style accommodation for those travelling on a budget is also provided.
- Activities at Novanta are designed to introduce you to the local community and its people. Wine tasting, traditional Italian lunches, pasta making, foraging expeditions and Italian lessons can all be arranged with the local villagers.