By Jori Diego Cherubini


The Convent of San Bartolomeo is old as the immense chestnut tree standing opposite, both born on September 5, 1278; They have suffered lightning, earthquakes, and vicissitudes of all kinds, but they continue to live, renewing themselves. Today the Convent, managed by the love of the Ricci Barbini brothers – Carlo, Marianna and Elena, sons of Prof. Vittorino Ricci Barbini – is one of the most valuable accommodation facilities between Monte Amiata and Val d’Orcia. We went in to tell you about it.



Crossing the entrance door, you enter a thousand-year-old, medieval and historical dimension, where time seems to invite quiet and relaxation. Ancient stones. Certainly. At the same time, the structure is equipped with all possible comforts, such as a heated swimming pool overlooking the Val d’Orcia, a SPA with Jacuzzi, sauna and emotional shower, a cellar stocked with fine wines, a bar and a restaurant with top quality dishes from the area. The perfect place, in short, to recharge, stop and chill out.

“Those who come here – say the brothers – love to be surrounded by history, it often happens to see guests stay a long time to contemplate the well in the cloister, the original travertine columns of 1500 and the frescoes, imagining how the friars lived; It is a sort of identification with culture, and with past centuries.

“Among the services, there is a brand-new heated swimming pool – overlooking the panorama of Radicofani: «For us it is a source of pride, it will be open even in winter with snow outside and steam coming out of the water, it is the realization of a small dream. While breakfast is served in a beautiful garden of roses and jasmine under an old walnut tree. There are also fig trees, pears and plums, from which jams with a unique flavour are made. And there is also a cellar to taste excellent wines, from which thirty-three steps lead to one of the most evocative parts of the convent: «it was the ancient refrigerator of the friars, with a constant temperature of 9 ° both in summer and winter».

In the splendid refectory you can admire “amazing” frescoes dating back to 1400 with scenes depicting Christ and St. Francis, then stuccoes and a coffered ceiling carved in wood with the unmistakable Franciscan coat of arms.

At San Bartolomeo culture is everywhere: «On July 25th we have scheduled a concert by a German orchestra (free admission at 9:00 pm), while on August 24th, for San Bartolomeo, there will be a lectio magistralis (free admission, 6 pm) by Professor Massimo Seriacopi on the figure of Ghino di Tacco in the Divine Comedy».

The place, which today is part of the Historical Houses of Tuscany, is particularly loved by the art critic Vittorio Sgarbi, several times a guest of the structure, who held some lectio magistralis on the Convent and on the importance of the frescoes, «It is thanks to the Professor that we understood the importance of these works, and with his help we became part of the widespread museums of Italy. Today the Convent of San Bartolomeo is a reality made of art and culture where guests can live the unique experience of staying in history».



A bit of history

The Convent of San Bartolomeo was abandoned after the Napoleonic Edict (1808). For decades it was unusable, particularly after the Second World War and following the earthquake of 1997. In 2000 Professor Vittorio Ricci Barbini threw himself “with heart and passion” into the enterprise of completely renovating the building and bringing it back to its former glory.



Convento San Bartolomeo: Viale G. Vespa, 368, Piancastagnaio (Siena) – Web: / / tel. 0577 787120 / 388 9378801