This is a continuation of my trip.  Click here to begin at Lucerne, and here to begin at Lake Como.
Friday, May 12
Varenna to Siena

There were many people waiting for the 10:20 am train to Milan, a jumping off point to numerous wonderful destinations. We had 1st class tickets, although I could not tell the difference between 1st class and 2nd class other than the numbers painted on the outside of the cars. From Milan we took a EuroStar train to Florence, with one more change of trains in Florence for Siena. Maritza bought the tickets at the AAA a couple of weeks prior to the trip. A lesson learned: someone came through the EuroStar cars asking people if they wanted to have lunch in the dining car. We wanted eat at our seats. That’s not the way it’s done. No eating at the seats, so we ate standing up in the snack bar car.
I thought the Villa Scacciapensieri would be a simple, country hotel. Not exactly. It’s located in an attractive residential neighborhood just outside Siena center. The Villa is comprised of three buildings situated among several gardens. We had a large, quiet room (#51) in the Limonaia Building with a view of lemon trees, flowers, and sculptured hedges. Once more we had a sitting room off to the side of the bedroom. Our “country hotel” even had nightly turndown service and wonderfully soft linens. This is a far cry from my days of closet-size rooms with bathrooms down the hall. According to their website, numerous dignitaries have stayed here, including Prince Rainier and Grace Kelly.

Villa Scacciapensieri