Owing to its fabulous climate, enviable gastronomy, fantastic wines, beautiful scenery, magnificent architecture and rich heritage, Italy has long been a favoured haunt for British travellers. With so many stunning locations, whether a city break, trip to the lakes or relaxing on the beach, holidays to Italy have something for everyone. Whether you’re a family looking for the perfect beach holiday in Sardinia, a couple searching for a romantic break in Sicily or on the spectacular coastline of Sorrento and Amalfi, or someone wanting to enjoy the gastronomic delights of Tuscany and Umbria, holidays in Italy are there to be indulged and enjoyed.
As the gateway to one of the most romantic destinations in Europe, Sorrento is as beautiful and authentic as you’d expect. Known for its lacework boutiques, ceramics and marble intarsia, the town is an excellent base for exploring the entire region. Grand Hotel Excelsior Vittoria takes full advantage of its prime location on the cliff top, providing inspiring views of the Bay of Naples and Mount Vesuvius. Grand Hotel Excelsior Vittoria’s five-star facilities will no doubt make it difficult to drag yourself away to see all the region has to offer. Set in five acres of private gardens, Grand Hotel Excelsior Vittoria’s luxury rooms and suites provide a tranquil setting, whether you are looking to enjoy the ultimate pampering session at the hotel’s on-site spa or hit the road to discover what life in Sorrento and the wider Neapolitan Riviera is all about.
Dating back to 1920 the exclusive Capri Tiberio Palace is just a short stroll from the famous Piazzetta and offers attentive service, magnificent views and an eclectic design blend of contemporary and retro. It’s supberly located, tucked away to the east of Capri’s Via Botteghe lined with exclusive boutiques. With just 46 rooms the atmosphere is warm and intimate. The guest bedrooms, each individually furnished, are cool and funky: there are coffee-table books on art and photography, wooden sculptures, exotic lamps, and curios from all over the world. Warm colour shades add to the feeling of cosiness. feeling. Bathrooms feature toiletries by local perfume maker, Carthusia.
Brunelleschi Hotel is a delightful and popular hotel ideally located in the very heart of historic Florence, just steps away from the Brunelleschi Cathedral in Piazza del Duomo and a short stroll from the Uffizi Gallery. A unique hotel built around the historic structures of the 6th century Byzantine tower La Pagliazza and the medieval church of San Michele in Palchetto it has been carefully reconstructed to retain the architectural characteristics of the time yet providing modern comforts and facilities.
Perched atop the Spanish Steps and enjoying truly spell-binding views over the city the iconic Hassler Roma, owned and managed by Mr Roberto Wirth, dates back to the Belle Epoque era and offers luxury accommodation, highly personalised service and exquisite dining. There is a great choice of superb and individually styled guest rooms ranging from classically elegant to contemporary chic. Set on the 6th floor and with unique city views, the Michelin-starred Imago Restaurant serves refined combinations as well as traditional Italian cuisine created by Head Chef Andrea Antonini, the Hassler bar is perfect for people watching and Salone Eva tempts with afternoon tea and fine dining.
Grand Hotel Tremezzo has become a landmark on the shores of Lake Como. Dating back to the early 1900’s, the imposing building is rich with history and romance. Set sail in one of the hotel’s own boats, or follow in the footsteps of Greta Garbo and indulge in a little Italian fine dining at the La Terrazza restaurant overlooking the lake. Bellagio and the Grigne mountains provide beautiful views, which can be enjoyed from the hotel’s gardens, terraces and all three of its swimming pools. As well as La Terrazza, Grand Hotel Tremezzo features a large winter dining room, ornately decorated with large picture windows that frame the lake.
Originally built as a watchtower to warn against Saracen raids in the 15th century, then converted into a masseria or country farmhouse, this luxury hotel has been further transformed into a tranquil heaven, cleverly retaining much of its original identity. Located midway between Bari and Brindisi, approximately 60km from both cities, Masseria San Domenico is 700m from the sandy beach where, in high season, guests can enjoy a privately reserved area. Beautiful, romantic guest rooms with white walls, marble floors, period furniture and colourful drapes, boast lovely views of the courtyard or the delightful gardens.
Nestled amidst olive trees in a beautiful setting and surrounded by beautiful white sandy beaches and crystal clear waters 4km from Palau, the romantic and exclusive Hotel Capo d’Orso offers understated elegance and seclusion, high standards of service with exquisite attention to detail, and excellent dining. Classic rooms, and junior suites, are tastefully furnished in typical Sardinian style and all have a veranda or terrace. Boasting exquisite cuisine, restaurant Il Paguro offers a great selection of fresh shellfish in a spectacular setting over the sea, whilst Gli Olivastri restaurant is set amidst century-old trees and lle Flottante by the water is an exciting location in which to enjoy the chef’s specialities.
In a slightly elevated position and overlooking the marina of Punta Ala with views towards the Elba Island, the refined Baglioni Resort Cala del Porto offers friendly Italian hospitality, excellent dining and a sophisticated ambiance. Elegant interiors with comfortable spaces convey a home from home feel, and guest rooms and suites are decorated in a typically Tuscan style and feature views of the gardens, pool area or marina and most, a private balcony. The hotel’s chic Belvedere Restaurant offers fine Tuscan cuisine with its sunset terrace the perfect setting for romantic evening dining, whilst La Spiaggia overlooking the beach serves light lunches and dinners in a more informal setting. Breakfast can be enjoyed buffet style and there is a bar and pool bar for refreshing drinks.
The Ashbee nestles amidst fragrant citrus trees in the heart of Taormina and this beautiful 20th century villa, designed by the famous Arts & Craft architect and designer Charles Robert Ashbee in 1907, offers fabulous accommodation coupled with fantastic views from its terraces and gardens. An harmonious blend of Sicilian and English styles results in a delightful interior with parquet flooring, marble, glass chandeliers and a splendid combination of stylish contemporary and plush antique furnishings.
In a stunning setting in 4 hectares of grounds in the Tuscan countryside, 23km from Siena, stands the 11th century village of Monastero dell’Ombrone, where, within its medieval walls, Castel Monastero offers warm hospitality, exquisite cuisine and a relaxing ambiance. Elegant guest rooms and suites are furnished in a mix of rustic and contemporary styles with wonderful views of the vineyards and olive groves, and fine culinary delights await in the sophisticated gourmet restaurant, originally opened in partnership with Gordon Ramsay and now run by rising Italian chef, Stelios Sakalis.
The exclusive Belmond Hotel Cipriani is set amid beautiful gardens on the tip of Giudecca Island and boasts simply stunning views. It is only a five minute complimentary boat ride to the hotel’s private pier in St Mark’s Square, and away from the hustle and bustle of the city, in its tranquil setting, it offers the very best in luxurious accommodation and attentive service. There is a wide range of superbly furnished rooms and suites which have panoramic views of the lagoon, the gardens or St Mark’s Square. Nestling in the lush gardens the Olympic-size pool offers calm and relaxation, with a poolside bar serving drinks and light snacks.