La Bandita Townhouse
What We Love
- The center-of-it-all setting in a charming Tuscan town where parts of The English Patient were filmed
- Traditional yet up-to-date Tuscan cuisine using seasonal local ingredients
- Private courtyard garden with patio seating
What To Know
- There’s an appointment-only spa
- The closest train station is in Chiusi, about a 45-minute drive away. The hotel can arrange transfers or rental cars
- Free WiFi
Converted 15th-century convent turned sleek boutique in the picturesque Tuscan hilltop town of Pienza
Urban loft meets rustic Tuscan retreat. Working with a top designer, who happens to be a cousin and frequent collaborator of starchitect Richard Rogers, La Bandita’s owners have stayed true to the light-filled 500-year-old building’s beautiful bones. There are rough-hewn stone walls, beam ceilings and grand archways everywhere you look. Into this structure they’ve inserted their own industrial-chic downtown aesthetic, employing vintage mirrors, maps, leather club chairs and metal stools and seats from a famed antiques warehouse in Florence, custom-designing mod bookshelves and cabinetry, and staining wood floors and ceilings in light shades of gray to pull it all together.
Bed and Bath
In keeping with the rest of the hotel’s modern-meets-ancient aesthetic, the dozen guestrooms are spread across three floors and all differ in size and shape. The furnishings are largely consistent, however: Large custom-made platform beds covered with crisp white linens, convertible sofabeds and mod orange-and-gray cabinetry stand out against the neutral palette of exposed stone, white walls and gray-washed wooden floors and ceilings. About half of the ample bathrooms, all done in crisply contemporary white and gray and outfitted with subtly fragranced products from Ortiga Sicilia Home, have both a tub and a shower; in some rooms, in fact, the soaking tub is, rather decadently, right in the bedroom.
On the ground floor, down a barrel-vaulted, stone-walled hallway, the Townhouse Café serves breakfast, dinner and drinks daily, and lunch every day except Monday and Tuesday. The restaurant’s maroon subway-tiled kitchen, vintage furnishings and large arched French doors create a convivial atmosphere that nicely matches the seasonal, local, casual food it serves. Beyond the restaurant there’s a patio with table seating and, a few steps up from that, a grassy little walled garden bordered by herbs, shrubs, flowers and small trees. Back inside and on the second floor, a guests-only library and bar stocks a collection of books both academic and amusing, and serves small snacks at cocktail hour. A turntable with vintage vinyl provides the tunes (the American owner was once a record company exec who accompanied the likes of the Strokes on tour).
In the Area
The hotel has a prime location in Pienza. You’re a few short blocks from the piazza, with its grand church and tiny coffee bar, and artisanal and specialty food shops line the streets in every direction. The best store for the region’s pecorino cheese and fennel sausage is Marusco e Maria, while a great wine selection can be found just around the corner at Enoteca di Ghino. Top restaurants include Sette Divino and Latte di Luna. Beyond Pienza, the rolling hills, medieval hilltop towns and exquisite wineries of southern Tuscany’s UNESCO-protected Val d’Orcia await. And it’s not far from Tuscany’s northern reaches, either: Sienna and Cortona are all less than an hour away. San Gimignano and Florence are about 90 minutes.
How to Get There
This “hip hotel” not only provided me with a first class experience, but I earned Marriott points for my stay. Dude...
La Bandita is located inside the charming piazza of Pienza, a beautiful town surrounded by glorious views of the Tuscan countryside. The service was amazing, from the cheery front desk staff to the restaurant employees to John, the owner...everyone made us feel welcome and happy.
The crown jewel of the hotel is a library on the first floor...my wife and I enjoyed a bottle of wine and some food that we brought in while listening to the turntable, getting to know some of the other guests over a few bottles of wine before dinner. The overall vibe of the hotel made this experience both natural and inviting.
Our suite was spacious and perfect. Bravo.
I am Marriott Titanium and booked La Bandita Townhouse with points as a part of a two week Italian vacation. It was the highlight of my entire trip! This place is absolutely fantastic. The location, the staff, the food, the ambiance, everything. If you are looking for a perfect place to stay in Tuscany, this is IT, especially if you are Marriott obsessed, like I am. We particularly loved Virginia at the front desk. The entire team here is great. Book this place, trust me!
La Bandita Townhouse is located in the heart of Pienza, one of the most beautiful places we have ever visited. The Townhouse is fully modernized on the inside, with lovely wooden floors, clean lines and a thoroughly up-to-date large bathroom. Our bed was firm and comfortable, something that we very much appreciate and is not always easy to find while traveling. The hotel is excellently run--a wonderful, friendly group of people (Elena, John, Virginie, Silvia, Paola, and Valeria) who took care of our every request with a friendly smile and offered great suggestions on where to visit nearby and where to eat, as well as making dinner reservations for us each night. Everyone working at the hotel and the restaurant was extremely friendly and welcoming. The restaurant at the hotel serves delicious food that is both traditional and creatively prepared--we highly recommend eating there at least one night while staying at the hotel, We loved it and hope that we will be able to visit again, hopefully next year!
A cool family run boutique hotel/B&B in historic Pienza, a focus on relaxing, great restaurant/food and service, with a very cool open style residents room with record player, open bar and plenty of books.
We really enjoyed our stay, the staff are amazing, food is awesome and the town in great for a few days.
Downside - it’s very difficult to see how this property is classed as a Category 7 Marriott / 60,000 points a night. There are also no SPG/Marriott benefits.
It’s cool, but very basic, if you’re driving through Tuscany, La Bandita is well worth a visit, but don’t expect too much compared to other category 7 hotels.
Our stay at La Bandita Townhouse could not have been better. From an evening sipping wine in the "Very Relaxing Room" to comfortable beds in a very spacious room and yummy breakfast every morning, all the details were perfect. The staff was exceptional -- they helped us every step of the way -- from parking on arrival to helping us with reservations at restaurants, spas, and nearby attractions. Everyone was so friendly, kind, and welcoming. We truly loved our experience at the hotel and Pienza is a spectacular place in and of itself. I highly recommend the suggested hike they outline in the in-room guidebook provided by the hotel -- it is a serene long walk through the Tuscan countryside that was one of the highlights of my trip.