You’ve probably guessed by now that I love Italy – its food, wine, people, scenery and history. I also love its beautiful, distinctive hotels that have a real sense of place within the rich tapestry of Italy’s diverse landscape. Here are five of my favourite Italian hotels.
Hotel Londra Palace, Venice
A couple of minutes stroll from Piazza San Marco, just past the end of the Grand Canal on bustling Riva degli Schiavoni, this grand old palazzo has my favourite location of anywhere in Venice. Sunset and sunrise are especially stunning with beautiful views over Saint Mark’s Basin to the Palladio-designed church of San Giorgio Maggiore.
Grand Hotel Continental, Siena
The most beautiful hotel I’ve ever stayed in, this 17th century palazzo was a wedding gift from Pope Alexander VII to his niece Olimpia. Ask for a room with a frescoed ceiling and mezzanine on the piano noble (the ‘noble’ or best floor of an Italian home where guests were entertained).
The Inn at The Spanish Steps, Rome
Located on Via Condotti, Rome’s most fashionable shopping street, and with a penthouse overlooking Piazza di Spagna, one of Rome’s most beautiful squares, this boutique hotel is perfectly situated for exploring The Eternal City.
Casa Angelina, Amalfi Coast
Clinging to a cliff side in Praiano (between Positano and Amalfi), this modern hotel has 180-degree views of the Mediterranean – providing a rare chance to see both the sun rise over the sea and set into it. Minimal, understated elegance, dotted with beautiful modern art, it’s really all about that breathtaking view of sea and coast.
Hotel Sant’Angelo, Matera
A night in this cave hotel in the World Heritage-listed city of Matera, where ancient churches and houses and modern restaurants and hotels are all carved out of the soft tufa, is a bucket-list experience. Ask for a room with a view of the church and try the local fare in the hotel’s cave restaurant.