Val d'Orcia Holiday
Agriturismi, case vacanza, B&B, SPA, hotel, castelli e ville
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Spas and Thermal baths in the Val d'Orcia

Professionalism and 5-star luxury

Located in the heart of Tuscany, the Adler Thermae Spa Resort is surrounded by gently rolling hills, terraced vineyards and colorful meadows. Built in a country house style, the resort boasts 1000 square meters of thermal and sports swimming pools, 4 different saunas and steam baths, a spa with a wide range of luxury spa treatments. Thermal waters are piped to the hotel pools for regenerating baths all the time. The cookery is in tune with the general atmosphere. Thanks to a mix of original recipes from the Tuscan tradition and well-balanced solutions, food at Adler is divine, healthy and tasty at the same time.

contacts: 53027 Bagno Vignoni - San Quirico d’Orcia - Siena / Italy
tel.: +39 0577 889 001 | |

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Bagno Vignoni is a fascinating little hamlet in the commune of San Quirico d'Orcia that is arranged around a large basin of water which forms part of an antique thermal bath complex. Instead of the normal piazza or square, this basin provides an unusual kind of watery mirror as the central focus of the urban fabric. The rest of the village stretches away from this centre and includes several elements of the old Roman thermal complex. A restored fragment of fresco depicting the Resurrected Christ attributed to Vittorio Salimbeni and originally located in the chapel of Saint Catherine is now displayed in the church of Saint John the Baptist, a later structure that was embedded within the pre-existing complex of private dwelling houses and hostelries. The waters of the central pool flow down to the old thermal complex via a grated channel, and then feed into a series of mills which are positioned on the steep slope running down to the river below.

Bagno Vignoni was established as a a thermal centre in the medieval period, although a re-discovered dedicatory epistle in latin confirms that the hot springs there were already appreciated in Roman times. Its name derives from the castle of Vignoni which was erected on a nearby hill in the Eleventh century. In the following century the 'Baths' belonged to the Tignosi family who were the lords of Tintinnano, now known as Rocca d'Orcia. The baths remained in the possession of the Tignosi until the end of the Thirteenth century. At the beginning of the Fourteenth century they were taken over by the Salimbeni, a Sienese family, along with a number of nearby castles and towns. They remained in the ownership of the Salimbeni until 1471 when Antonia Salimbeni's second husband, Attendolo Sforza, sold the baths to the commune of Siena. Surviving documents record how Catherine of Siena was brought to Bagno Vignoni on a number of occasions by her mother, who was intent on dissuading her daughter from becoming a nun. That the baths continued to be popular is illustrated by the fact that many other illustrious individuals are known to have been associated with Bagno Vignoni, including Pope Pius II (a member of the Piccolomini family) and Lorenzo the Magnificent, who spent some time there in 1490. During the Sixteenth century the Sienese doctor Lattanzio Tolomei dictated the Greek votive dedication inscribed on stone which is still visible on one of the pilasters of the loggia of Saint Catherine.

The hyperthermic waters of Bagno Vignoni are bicarbonate-sulphate alkaline and earthy. They emerge from the ground at a temperature of 51/52 degrees centigrade and are primarily used for baths and mud treatments, acting as coadjutants in the case of rheumatism and neuralgic conditions. They are also used for inhalations and internal irrigations. Lovers of nature, making their way back down the narrow road that leads up into Bagno Vignoni, will find a track that takes them down to the bottom of the hill in the direction of the river Orcia, to reach a rectangular pool fed by the thermal waters. There are no public amenities here and the confined space is not appropriate for a large number of people, but the basin of water is large and clean and the area is generally not crowded with tourists. This is in large part due to the fact that it is quite difficult to reach. Those who make the effort to get down there will find it a lovely place to relax in peace.

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Bagni San Filippo is a small thermal complex in the commune of Castiglione d'Orcia which is immersed in the green woods of Mount Amiata. This is an area of extreme natural beauty celebrated for its very many huge trees. The countryside is characterised by its calcareous deposits formed by the waters that surge out of the rocks, creating numerous concretions along the banks of the Rondinaia stream (also known as the 'White Ditch'). The most impressive of these looks like a solidified cascade of water and is known as the 'White Whale'. While perhaps not unlike how Medieval people may have imagined Purgatory to look like, this area nevertheless appealed to Saint Filippo Benizzi, after whom it was named. According to legend, Filippo Benizzi sought refuge inhere in an attempt to avoid being nominated to the papacy by the papal conclave. The saint's grotto still exists and is open to visitors. It contains a Seventeenth-century gesso bust of Filippo Benizzi and a tabernacle containing a wooden crucifix which according to popular tradition was carved by the hermit saint himself.

Archeological remains show that the baths were already known to the Romans in the classical period. They were certainly frequented by Lorenzo the Magnificent in 1485 and by the Grand Duke Ferdinand II in 1635 - the latter in an attempt to relieve himself of a persistent 'headache'. The baths, which were restructured in 1566 at the wish of the Medici Grand Duke Cosimo I, gained fame and prestige after being cited by Macchiavelli in his Mandragola. At the end of the Eighteenth century Giorgio Santi performed an initial chemical analysis of the waters and during the following century Antonio Targioni Tozzetti carried out a detailed study of them. During the same period Giuseppe Giuli set about estimating the water's therapeutic qualities after engaging in a chemical analysis of them.

The thermal water, which comes out at a temperature of 52 degrees centigrade, is classified as sulfurous-sulfate-bicarbonate hyperthrmic, enriched with natural mud-like accretions. It is particularly recommended for balneotherapy, mud-balneotherapy, inhalations, as a cure against osteo-neurological conditions and ear, nose and throat problems, as well as respiratory and skin conditions. Some of the springs are recommended for drinking as a cure for problems with internal organs: The so-called Aqua-Forte (or strong water) is recommended for kidney problems and the Aqua-Santa (or holy water) for liver conditions. Nowadays Bagno San Filippo, as well as providing a modern thermal complex, also offers one the chance to take advantage of this gift of nature by immersing oneself for free in open air pools only a few steps away in the nearby woods.

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