Photography by Enrico Costantini

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Villa Biondelli

Wine & Suites

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Special attributesA perfect destination for nature and wine lovers

Surrounded by vineyards as far as the eye can see, Villa Biondelli is located in Lombardy’s celebrated wine-making area of Franciacorta. “A family affair since 1711”, the Villa sits at the heart of an expansive wine estate and has been home to several families over the centuries; its history as fruitful as the fertile lands it guards, its stories imprinted within the original stone walls and frescoed interiors. Purchased by the Biondelli family in the early 1900s, it remains in their hands today with Joska and Francesca Biondelli taking the reins. With his wine expertise and her interior design prowess they opened the Villa’s doors to the public in 2018, turning a family affair into a love affair of ‘Wine & Suites’ for all to discover and enjoy. 

 

If there is one thing for certain, your stay at the Villa will most definitely not be short of wine. And when we say wine, we mean only the very best of its kind. Vinifying geniuses, the Biondelli’s have recently constructed an underground wine-cellar that lies beneath the renovated farmhouse, giving room to the bountiful bunches of certified organic grapes from the adjoining hectares of vines. Plump and juicy Chardonnay grapes make for their sensational Satèn Spumante and Franciacorta Brut, whilst the black grapes are reserved for a fabulous and fruity Curtefranca Rosso. This nectar of Gods (as we and the ancient Greeks like to call it) can be enjoyed in the comfort of your room or served to you outside in the private grounds for an Aperitivo to-die-for, as you lap up the lush northern-Italian landscape and the warm setting sun. 

 

The Villa’s accommodation is as dreamy and magical as the surrounding scenery and will quite literally make your stay a fairytale come true. Each of the eleven suites are named after a character from “The Singing Princess”, one of the first animated feature films and the predecessor to Disney’s Aladdin, which was produced in the Villa Biondelli itself during WWII. Combining contemporary design and vintage furnishings, the suites meet modern comforts with an authentic Bohemian flair. You will find four poster beds adorned with exotic printed linens, large colorfully cushioned armchairs, original tiled floors, and wood-beamed ceilings. The suites overlook the vineyards and surrounding gardens, and you can even opt for your own private terrace. So, whether you choose ‘Aladdin’, ‘Princess Zeila’, ‘Sultan Giafar’ or another of the splendid suites, you are sure to repose in grand style at Biondelli. 

 

Whilst you may find it difficult to tear yourself away from your beautiful bedroom, the Villa’s all-organic, all-seasonal and all absolutely scrumptious breakfast may be the very thing to entice you away. Breakfast is served outside, overlooking the gardens, or in the Jungle Veranda. A widespread array of pastries, locally grown fruits and vegetables, freshly made yogurts and a variety of local dishes conjured up from neighboring farms will happily fuel you for the day ahead. A book in one hand and a glass of wine in the other while lounging around the estate, is one way to spend your day at Biondelli, and spend it well… or you can even indulge in an in-room massage or enjoy the rolling hills of Franciacorta on saddle-back, roaming the never-ending vineyards and olive groves. 

 

Beyond the Estate’s doors, some of Northern Italy’s most breathtaking attractions, not to mention fabulous cuisine and wine, are nearby to explore. Nominated ‘European Best Destination 2019’ Monte Isola on Lake Iseo is a mere nine km from the Villa, and is a MUST. Europe’s largest inhabited lake island, its relatively small population is spread over several ancient hill and fishing villages and hamlets. Its absence of cars, which are strictly prohibited on the island unless you are the local doctor or priest, give it a timeless and peaceful atmosphere. The principal way to visit the Island is by ferry but if you wish to explore Lake Iseo you can rent a Riva motorboat, the famed wooden boats whose production was started here in 1842 and continues today.  

 

Villa Biondelli is in Bornato, deemed home to the best fermented sparkling wines in Italy. Franciacorta hosts many innovative wineries, where dedicated tours and tastings allow you to enjoy the breathtaking landscapes while learning about the wine production from grape to bottle. The historic Monte Rossa winery in Bornato features a tower from the Middle Ages and frescoes from the 1200s.

 

Franciacorta also boasts Medieval castles, Renaissance villas and monasteries. The recently restored Romanesque Monastero di San Pietro in Lamosa, with its beautiful cloister and home to exhibitions and musical events, is a few kilometers away, as is the magnificent Castello di Bornato, a 13th century castle with crenelated walls and a Renaissance villa. 

 

And in twenty-five minutes you can reach the little known magnificent Roman and Medieval city of Brescia, with its temples and monuments dating back to the reign of Emperor Augustus. The most notable of all Brescia’s religious monuments, which include a massive eighth-century monastery now housing the principal museum, is the Duomo Vecchio. This basilica is the most prominent Romanesque circular church still in existence. A trip to Brescia would not be complete without a visit to the Museo Mille Miglia. The legendary car race is celebrated here with some of the greatest cars to cross the finish line, as well as archived race footage and old-style petrol pumps. 

 

If you feel like exploring a little further afield, less than an hour away are some of the most renowned cities for art lovers in Italy: Mantua, Cremona, Bergamo, and Milan (and don’t forget the Quadrilatero della moda, the famed Milanese fashion district). 

 

While delighting in the wines of Franciacorta you will be spoilt for choice by the wonderful cuisine in the area. Inside an ancient hamlet, very close to Villa Biondelli, is the Michelin star Due Colombe. Chef Stefano Cerveni, whose family has been running this rustic restaurant for three generations, reimagines regional classics, such as baked tench from Lake Iseo and a ragout of rabbit, quail and chicken served with farfalle and truffles. End things on a sweet note with Sebino Passito, the local fortified wine made from raisins.

 

‘Villa Biondelli is guaranteed to offer a dreamlike and timeless atmosphere of a bygone era with all the modern comforts of the 21st century’, say Francesca and Joska Biondelli. We couldn’t agree more. It is the perfect place to unwind, immerse with nature, wonder and wine, wine… wine! We say, WINE NOT vacate at the estate asap? Get ready to be amazed.