A pleasure to stay in this impressively revived Barchessa (originally the farm buildings) in the lap of Villa Pisani, a 16th-century house designed by the great Andrea Palladio. You’ll feel caught up in the magic of it all: sweeping lawns, tall poplars standing sentry, the gentle swirling of the Gua River that leads to Venice, and inside 15 opulent rooms to cosset you. Find huge canopied beds, swish fabrics and spoiling bathrooms. Throughout the hotel restored traditional furniture marries well with contemporary abstract art (some of it created by owner Emanuela) and designer sculptures. You can plough up and down the pool, snooze on a sun lounger or read quietly in the library; whatever, you’re looked after brilliantly by well-trained, amiable staff. Treat yourself to a gourmet dinner in the bustling restaurant where clever chefs put innovative twists on classic Veneto dishes. Hit the Palladio tour, wander the Dolomites, visit vineyards, and the marvels of Verona, Padua and of course Venice are all within easy reach. Fab.