The beauty of Tuscany is almost jarring. It’s at once expected – it’s sweeping valleys of olive groves, cypress trees, vineyards and perfectly undone architectural & historical marvels have been depicted in such epic cinematic classics as “The English Patient,” “Gladiator” and “Under the Tuscan Sun” - while also being the birthplace of both the Italian Renaissance and one of the most superb wine regions in the world.
We’re used to seeing this type of beauty on the big screen. Yet, everything we think we know falls away amid a Tuscan olive grove, sipping, slowly savoring wine your palette has only dreamed exists. The unexpected is found in the deep-rooted connection you'll feel in your bones as your well-heeled boots hit the hallowed, historical ground in a place you’ve never been… that feels like home. Could anything feel more romantic and dreamy for destination I-do’s we ask you?
Nomad Republic is an international wedding consulting, planning and design firm made up of adventurous travelers and expert planners. They set out with design team Amorology to look for an inspired spot for a editorial shoot, and Tuscany was on the tip of all their multi-lingual tongues. While scouting numerous locations in the area, they came across La Bandita, a privately owned, stylish country house on a beautiful hillside with a fabulous story.
The owner, John Voightmann, was once an international music executive or as he calls it - “I spent ten years chasing rock stars all over the world.” Once he quit his high-flying glamorous job, he and his wife, a travel writer, settled into the next chapter of their lives, researching, renovating and building what would become La Bandita or as John says – "a beautiful, comfortable retreat, with a modern look and a relaxed atmosphere, where my friends — and friends of friends — from all over the world could come to relax, cook big dinners, and enjoy Tuscany.”
Much like Tuscany itself, the juxtaposition between Venue Report Member, La Bandita’s modern influences and it’s perch on a historical hillside overlooking centuries-old vineyards and olive trees is jarring in the loveliest of ways. It’s unsettling because it fits so seamlessly.
How did you find La Bandita?
Last spring, we used La Bandita’s grounds for an editorial shoot with international destination wedding company Nomad Republic. We visited dozens of event spaces in Tuscany, searching for a venue that would match our philosophy and style. We chose La Bandita for its location in beautiful Val d’Orcia, known for its sweeping views of olives groves, vineyards, sinuous country roads lined with tall cypress trees, wheat fields and charming medieval hilltop towns.
What is the locale like that surrounds the venue?
The area is largely agricultural and is a perfect combination of unspoiled nature, culinary tradition and generous hospitality. La Bandita has style for miles and definitely resonates with design-savvy people looking for a modern homely country house retreat. It’s a place that has to be experienced and shared with family and/or friends.
Your journey begins when you start negotiating the bumpy dirt road at the end of which you will find a beautifully restored farmhouse and acres of enchanting, picture-perfect landscapes.
What about La Bandita inspired you to select it for your editorial wedding shoot?
Be it the attraction of nature all around, the laid-back and friendly atmosphere or the attentive service, La Bandita’s surroundings produce an incomparable sense of awe, leaving you with a feeling of peace and timelessness. You feel as if you’ve come home even though you have never been there before.
What are some of your favorite design elements of La Bandita?
From the infinity pool - that John, the owner, uncovered for the occasion - the boccia playing area to the terracotta gazebo.
Can you share any destination planning tips for those who may plan an event here?
Despite the exhaustion due to tight schedules, numerous trips to Rome and Florence to pick up rentals, models and flowers, and the continuous rain that is a contingency to work with if you’re planning an event in Tuscany in April, the whole experience was amazing and super relaxed. And we had so many shooting spots to play with.
Did you meet anyone at the venue who made a lasting impression?
John, the owner, offered us the Pig Sty Suite, a private stylish stone cottage near the main building that has its private dining terrace, providing us with an opportune shelter from sun and intermittent rain showers.
Can you share any inside tips?
The venue being conveniently located a stone’s throw away from the medieval gem of Pienza, we spent the rest of the night at the Townhouse Caffe, the restaurant of La Bandita’s sister hotel where we rustled up a glorious meal before heading home to rest up and recharge before another great day of shooting.
Venue: La Bandita | International Consulting: Nomad Republic | Event Design + Styling: Amorology | Photography: Mademoiselle Fiona | Floral Design + Styling: Oak And The Owl | Graphic Design: Peanut Press Creative | Calligraphy: Nancy Hopkins Lettering | Wedding Dress: The Dress Theory | Second Dress: Madewell | Makeup + Hair: Ilaria Borgioli | Dishes: Red Raven Studios | Table Top: The Hostess Haven | Ribbon: Bellame Ribbon | Cake: Tuscan Wedding Cakes | Hair Accessories: Twigs & Honey | Groom's Attire: Hugo Boss
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