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Tuscany Italy Hotel Reviews - Hotel Il Pellicano, Tuscany Italy

by Wade Rowland - Part 1

Voted 5th Best Leisure Hotel in Europe by Conde Nast Traveller

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Hotel Il Pellicano
Breathtaking Italian Coastline Setting

On the narrow road that bobs and weaves across the rocky Argentario peninsula to Relais & Châteaux Il Pellicano's secluded seaside acreage, we were passed by a late-model Bentley convertible. It was being driven with admirable brio by a gray-haired man in an open-collared sport shirt, to the evident enjoyment of his elderly female companions. There were two of them nestled in the glove-leather seats, one in the front and one in the back and both were flagrantly ignoring Isadora Duncan's rule about long scarves in topless automobiles. As the car whisked past us, bright-patterned silk flailing in the wind, we could hear their laughter.

When we reached the hotel and parked our dusty Opal wagon in the garage beneath the tennis courts, we found, along with the Bentley, a vintage Mercedes 300 SL and a spotless E-type Jaguar plus a nice selection of Porsches, Beemers and Audis. This was a place, apparently, for people who take their driving pleasures seriously.

While the 300 SL and the Jag were of La Dolce Vita vintage, the atmosphere at this famous resort hotel is more Fitzgerald than Fellini. The story of its genesis sounds like something out of The Great Gatsby and the punctilious country club atmosphere of the place helps the illusion along.

Nowadays on just about everybody's list of top resort hotels of the world, Il Pellicano started out as a private villa, a love nest built by a romantic couple named Patsy Daszel and Michael Graham. She was a California heiress; he was a dashing British airman who'd won worldwide fame in the early sixties by bailing out of his stricken aircraft over the African bush.

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