Why The Grand Universe Lucca, Autograph Collection is a must-visit for 2021 

By Chantelle Billson | 15 Feb 2021 | Travel, Design

In the heart of Tuscany, this boutique hotel offers lavish living, heaps of history and signature offerings you won't find anywhere else

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In a time of such uncertainty, it is great to be able to have the security of taking charge of your travel plans and looking forward to the future, and compiling a travel wish-list for 2021 is a great way to make sure you're able to enjoy all of the exuberant holidays you plan on taking. Having spent so long unable to travel, this year is all about making considered choices and ensuring the places in which you do eventually choose to stay ticks all of the boxes.

Whether you have been in isolation in a major city or secluded out in the countryside, Lucca, one of Tuscany's most picturesque towns, will serve as a perfect antidote to the last 12 months. It is a stunningly well-preserved city, and the home to newly opened Grand Universe, Autograph Collection, which is sure to excel in offering the perfect balance of not only rich heritage and privacy but also bustling communality. 

Lucca's rich past and charming present make it a go-to destination for travellers worldwide, and the Grand Universe Lucca has only added to this city's fascinating history with significant heritage that is worth exploring in its own right. A hotel was originally founded on the site, replete with Roman ruins, in 1857, and boasted a lengthy track record of hosting poets, philosophers and artists, something that is now ingrained forever in the hotel's very being following a multi-million-pound renovation led by Archea Associati. 

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Guests at this stunning hotel can pick from a choice of 55 guestrooms and nine one-of-a-kind suites, all with inviting interiors that showcase a heady mix of silk and velvet textiles in earthy shades said to reflect the city's silk production heritage, and acting as an elegant contrast to the rooms' modern wood surfaces and striking gold detailing.

The hotel that used to stand on the site had a past rich in music, and each room is named for some element of this harmonic history. Spend a night in the ‘Queen Piccoli Guest Room’, named after the small high-pitched flute included in many orchestras, or opt for the 'Puccini Suite', named after the Lucca-born opera composer Giacomo Puccini.

The Grand Universe is also a stone's throw from the tourist attractions of the city, defined by their spectacular Renaissance architecture. These include the towering Chiesa dei Santi Giovanni e Reparata and the culinary hotspot of Piazza Napoleone; the hotel could scarcely be better located for a taste of the city.

Furthermore, the hotel - and the city as a whole - is situated just half an hour by car from the sandy Tuscan coast, should guests opt for a change of scenery from the hotel's stunning views over the city's piazzas.

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Wine enthusiasts can enjoy the fine offerings at the on-site restaurant Legacy, which serves up predictably outstanding local cuisine, before heading up to the rooftop bar Sommitá, where guests can take in spectacular panoramic views of the city's towers. Up here, patrons can indulge in the hotel's extensive list of after-dinner liqueurs, each named after Lucca's great most famous sons and daughters. The hotel also provides various signature experiences such as private cocktail classes with its head mixologist.

Lucca, in all its Renaissance splendour, is just two hours away from the UK by air. As such, if creating a memorable experience on your next escape from the British Isles is of utmost import to you and your family, The Grand Universe is undeniably the answer.

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marriott.co.uk/hotels/travel/psaak-grand-universe-lucca-autograph-collection