It sounded very unlikely that ex-Tory treasurer Lord McAlpine was running a ‘mere’ B&B and so it proves. B&B doesn’t adequately describe ‘Il Convento di Santa Maria di Costantinopoli’ (click for pictures).
It‘s actually a cloistered, court-yarded, eight roomed former convent decorated with the McAlpine family’s ‘museum-worthy private collection of extraordinary tribal artefacts and folk art’.
Double rooms start at £375 per night, singles from €335. Included is bed and breakfast plus lunch, laundry and unlimited, free access to the drinks cellar. Dinner is €45 extra. No TV or phones. Rooms can be booked through www.EssentialItaly.co.uk
The convent is just outside Diso, right on the very heel of Italy, in Puglia, thirty minutes from Lecce, a couple of miles from the coast, almost exactly 1,500 miles from London, due south east.