The heir to the Roman civilisation and instigator of the most famous art movements, including the Renaissance, Italy is a land of culture, monuments and beauty of all kinds.
The empress, the grande dame, the bejeweled matriarch… Rome is one of the most awe-inspiring capitals in the world. No other city offers so many strata of beauty, from Roman ruins to medieval campaniles, Renaissance palaces, Baroque basilicas, 18th century steps and modernist buildings. And all of these jewels are set in a verdant showcase of parks, gardens, flower-filled terraces and historic villas, with the sun as its spotlight and the Tiber as an embellishing ribbon. To discover Rome in all its splendor, the visitor need only climb one of its seven hills, like Quirinal or Janiculum. Or enter any church to discover the artists who have immortalized the Eternal City: Caravaggio at San Luigi dei Francesi, Michelangelo at San Pietro in Vincoli, Raphael at Sant’Agostino. Out in the streets the spectacle continues with fountains by Bernini, façades by Borromini and Bramante’s Tempietto. On the horizon, the dome of Saint Peter’s Basilica, designed by Michelangelo, is balanced by the even older cupola of the Pantheon. In no other city in the world do the ruins feel so alive: a Forum nestled in greenery, a Colosseum as heavily frequented as in the gladiators’ time, a Circus Maximus where visitors can relax on the grass or run with the ghosts of charioteers.
The focal point of one of the most beautiful landscapes in the world, the Gulf of Naples defies all comparison. Sun-drenched, edgy, elegant and down-home, the eponymous city takes center stage, with the majesty of Vesuvius as its backdrop. This is a multifaceted city, full of baroque churches and noble palaces, with the seafront on one side and the historic pizzerias and friggitorie of the Spaccanapoli district on the other. The charm of this ancient metropolis arises from the tension that energizes these two vital halves of its soul. The past is not forgotten - as a visit to the ruins of Pompeii, Herculanum or Paestum so eloquently demonstrates.
Hotel and restaurant on a river. The majestic waters of the River Brenta, next to the lagoon of Venice, wind their way between the Palladian villas, once a favourite haunt of the aristocracy. Amongst these, Villa Franceschi, the former residence of the Doge’s jewellers, stands in a bend in the river in all its splendour, within acres of forested parkland. According to tradition, balconies and terraces face the river and this is true of the restaurant which serves delicious Venetian cuisine ‘al fresco’. The guestrooms still boast marble fireplaces and terracotta floor tiles, the ceilings have retained their original wooden beams, and chandeliers and silks handcrafted by artisans in Venice lend a delightful finishing touch. ... Learn moreless
Restaurant in town. Il Luogo di Aimo e Nadia was opened more than 50 years ago by Aimo and Nadia, partners in life and work, and is famous for both its cuisine and for its setting, an artistic and architectural project with Paolo Ferrari, in which performances combine culinary art, theatre and fine art. Their daughter Stefania is now at the helm of Il Luogo, alongside the Chefs Fabio Pisani and Alessandro Negrini, who produce a creative cuisine: their style reveals unsuspected flavours. Their dishes are the fruit of both traditional and contemporary techniques, and give perfect expression to the complex culinary heritage bequeathed by the culture and nature of Italy. ... Learn moreless
Hotel and restaurant on a lake. If Romeo and Juliet had enjoyed a happier ending to their story, it is easy to imagine it being played out here. Twenty minutes from Verona, the two lovers would have met secretly on the banks of Lake Garda. They would have strolled along the beach of Villa Fiordaliso, a neoclassical marvel with facades of Siena stone, long rows of lemon trees and a lounge decorated with Venetian stained glass. They would have taken refuge in a romantic room named after a flower: Iris, Mimosa, Orchid, or Magnolia, and would perhaps have lingered in the elegant piano bar in the medieval San Marco Tower which overlooks the private harbour. The rest of the story is yours to write. ... Learn moreless
Restaurant and hotel in the country. The Villa del Quar is nestled among the Valpolicella vineyards, five kilometres from Verona and close to the Villa Santa Sofia by Palladio, both World Heritage sites. This listed villa is surrounded by antique walls, which hide gardens, fountains, a clover-shaped swimming pool, vineyards, olive trees and lemon plantations, reminiscent of the Venetian tradition. Let yourself be enchanted by the sights and sounds of the countryside, charmed by the elegance of this Renaissance villa, intoxicated by the fragrance of the famous wines in the ancient cellars and the own labels of estate. The villa boasts a stunning orangerie, the ideal venue for your special occasions. ... Learn moreless
Hotel and restaurant in a village. In this superb 700 hectare Tuscan estate, time would appear to have stood still.This property belonging to the Ferragamo family is an oasis of charm in the image of a mediaeval village with a 19th century villa, farm and farm buildings. Wines and olive oil are produced here by traditional methods – they are an integral part of the landscape of the region. Whether you are strolling through the narrow streets of the village, relaxing at the pools, enjoying treatments at Il Borro Spa or the traditional cuisine at Osteria del Borro with local ingredients, you will experience the same pleasure: that of a particular art of living imbued with calm and elegance. ... Learn moreless
Hotel and restaurant in the country. Located in the heart of the Chianti Classico, Borgo San Felice combines all of the pleasures of la dolce vita. The property is made up of an entire medieval hamlet including its old chapel, large pool, cellars and its vineyard surrounding it. Infinite pleasures can be discovered: authentic Mediterranean cuisine, an exceptional wine cellar, and the wellness centre. A bike excursion to explore the environs will enhance the enjoyment of an unforgettable stay in this medieval hamlet. Amongst other things, the beauty of the picturesque villages of Chianti, just a few kilometres away, will guarantee an eternal attachment to this region of Italy with its light and magic. ... Learn moreless
Hotel and restaurant in a vineyard. In the heart of the Piedmont vineyards and the white truffle region, this former Franciscan monastery was transformed into the Relais San Maurizio, a place dedicated to the wellness of body and soul. Every suite offers a different view of the Langhe hills, designated a Unesco World Heritage Site. The spa offers thalassotherapy, in a former salt cave. Treatments skilfully combine cutting-edge medical knowledge with water and salt-based products. The restaurant, Guido da Costigliole, located in the beautiful vaulted cellars of the building, has been the undisputed benchmark for fine dining in the region for more than fifty years. ... Learn moreless
Hotel and restaurant on the seafront. This elegant property was the first Italian hotel to join Relais & Châteaux in 1973, and the Gallia-Ansaldi family has been welcoming guests for three generations. On the fine sandy private beach, in front of the island of Elba, La Pagoda restaurant reigns supreme, thanks to its unique architecture and spectacular sea views. Completely relax in the Turkish baths, pool or wellness centre and gym. Golfers will enjoy the 18-hole golf course, set in a pine forest that is over hundred years old. A private yacht awaits for memorable excursions to the Tuscan archipelago. ... Learn moreless
Restaurant and hotel in a village. Located on the magical island of Ischia, in the village of Casamicciola, the Terme Manzi Hotel & Spa is an architectural gem built in the 19th century. This elegant and sophisticated palace, with its beautiful furnishings and decor, is where the mind and body become one to embrace the warm thermal waters of the Gurgitello Spring, well-known since antiquity for their regenerating, healing and therapeutic properties. They best combine with the fabulous qualities of organic volcanic clay for a revitalizing synthesis, the mud therapy. At all three restaurants, the chef chooses from the genuine ingredients that the Ischian sea and countryside have to offer, creating dishes that bring together the great Mediterranean tradition with new Italian culinary creativity, and will take you on a journey to discover the “emotional cuisine”. ... Learn moreless
Hotel and restaurant in the mountains. This sleek, modern building, perched at an altitude of 1 622 metres, almost takes a back seat to the magnificence of the landscape. Yet, inside, its beauty is apparent: tree trunks, raw timber and light colours make for a resolutely contemporary style, from its large guest rooms to its superb dining room which is fully glazed, light-drenched and offers panoramic views of the Dolomites – the perfect setting to savour Heinrich Schneider’s refined cuisine, prepared with ingredients from the South Tyrol. His sister, Gisela, a sommelier, is the other half of the partnership at the helm of this property which was created by their parents and has recently been refurbished. ... Learn moreless