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Harpers Spas


In the green hills of Tuscany, Fonteverde looks out over the Val d'Orcia and Mont Amiata, the extinct volcano responsible for the thermal waters that gush out ofthe area's 42 springs. This newly built hotel has 80 plush rooms, and is connected by an underground passage with the spa, where guests can do much more than just bathe in the waters. At Fonteverde, stress is viewed as a sickness. Everyday issues such as insomnia and smoking are taken into account, and the importance of taking care of yourself is emphasised. There is also a huge range of beauty treatments, which use thermal mud to improve skin tone and draw out toxins, leaving you with glowing, baby-soft skin.
The Oriental Watsu - shiatsu in thermal spring water - is a unique experience that releases tension in your body, giving you more freedom of movement; and Liquid Sound is a relaxing treatment combining natural hot springs with colour therapy. Under the guidance of the spa director, Dr Bruno, doctors can plan personalised prograinmes to tackle specific problems and complaints.
Perfect for... Chic couples, groups offriends from Rome, the odd American.
Feast or famine? This is Italy, so all the food, including the calorie-controlled menus in the grand restaurant, is delicious.
Need to know The spa waters are a warm and inviting 42°C, rich in sulphates (not smelly sulphur), calcium, fluoride and magnesium, which combine for an antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, detoxifying and diuretic effect. The water also promotes digestion and is good for osteoporosis, muscle tone and respiratory complaints.
If you do one thing... Wallow in the steaming thermal infinity pool (reserved for hotel guests), which has glorious views of the rolling Tuscan hills by day, romantic sunsets over Mont Amiata by dusk and twinkling stars in a black sky by night.

FonteverdeSpa & Hotel (+39 0578 57241;, from £699 a person for three nights B&B, including British Airways flights and Europcar car hire, with Italian Journeys (020 7370 6002; ELEANOR SOUTHALL