Special hotels in romantic locations
If you want an easy shortlist of romantic hotels for a special honeymoon or anniversary trip, this page provides a practical starting point. I’ve selected hotels which are luxurious, offer good service and facilities and which have excellent reviews from past guests. I have stayed in and reviewed several myself. The hotels are in a range of Italian regions, and all are in strategic locations for easy sightseeing, good views, quality dining and ambling through picturesque lanes. Most importantly, they are ideal for relaxing, feeling like royalty and creating ‘forever’ memories.
The best way to guarantee a good honeymoon is to do the research and to book carefully. To ensure the quality of your accommodation, it is usually worth paying for one of the hotel’s higher-category rooms or suites, and paying the extra for a view where available. Read room descriptions and past reviews carefully, and don’t let your trip be spoiled by any unrealistic expectations. A junior suite in Italy is usually only one room, slightly larger and generally with a sofa or seating area. By all means add a comment to your booking form to let the hotel know this is your honeymoon, but don’t expect special treatment. Some Italian hotels may offer wine or an upgrade but this is not the norm. If you want special treats waiting in your room, I’d suggest you email the hotel with a request, and be prepared to pay. Do note that extras can be expensive in five-star hotels in Italy, and sometimes this includes breakfast – check whether your room-rate includes breakfast when you make your booking.
The best months for holidaying in Italy are May and June. If you want to sunbathe and find all your hotel’s outdoor facilities up and running, June is a safer bet. The summer holiday period – late July and all of August – is best avoided if you want a peaceful and romantic atmosphere. Even in very expensive hotels, you may find the swimming pool busy with children during this period.
Venice: Ca’ Maria Adele
Romantic, intimate, stylish and very special, this boutique design hotel has just twelve rooms and is situated in a lovely spot by the Salute Church and the Grand Canal. I stayed here and thought it was just about the best – and most luxurious – hotel I’ve visited.
Florence: Il Salviatino
Florence has some stylish hotels, but for a special honeymoon, consider staying outside town at Il Salviatino, a five-star hotel in an elegant historic villa, restored and opened in 2010. With excellent service, panoramic views, luxurious surroundings, rave reviews and a shuttle into Florence, the hotel offers an experience worth splashing out on.
Amalfi Coast: Casa Angelina
Casa Angelina is a modern five-star hotel in Praiano, near Positano, on the Amalfi Coast. It’s a contemporary white building decorated in an elegant minimalist style, with sun terraces on the cliffs, a spa, outdoor and indoor swimming pools and a panoramic lift (elevator) down to the hotel’s private beach.
Rome: The Inn at the Roman Forum
There is no swimming pool, and no spa, but for a snug, special lodging in the heart of the city, this is a great choice. The Inn at the Roman Forum is hidden away on a historic lane behind the archaeological sites, with its own bit of Roman ruin within the building. Rooms are lavish and stylish, and some of the beds are vast. This is a small boutique establishment so book ahead.
Taormina: Villa Carlotta
Villa Carlotta is a boutique-style four-star hotel with lots of character in Taormina, probably the most romantic town in Sicily. It is on the hillside below the famous Greek theatre, and there’s a ten-minute walk – uphill – to the centre of town. The villa has a range of elegant rooms and suites, a roof terrace with views of Etna, and a small outdoor pool. Villa Carlotta is a member of the Small Luxury Hotels of the World network and has just 27 rooms. Taormina also boasts several five-star hotels and a choice of cheaper accommodation.
Maratea: Locanda delle Donne Monache
The Locanda delle Donne Monache, a former convent, is an exquisite four-star hotel in Maratea, a picturesque little hill-town high above the Tyrrhenian Sea in the region of Basilicata. Rooms are fairly small but luxurious; the hotel also has an excellent restaurant and romantic outdoors space: a little green garden and a panoramic swimming pool area. Beaches are a short drive away. A good choice for a honeymoon off the beaten track in authentic Italy.
Venice: San Clemente Palace Hotel & Resort
Venice has lots of good hotels, some of them very luxurious, and some with Grand Canal views. Many of these would be very suitable for a honeymoon, but the San Clemente has something special: it is on its own private island. Built as a monastery, the buildings were at one point used as a lunatic asylum, but if that doesn’t bother you, the peaceful charm of the island makes a good escape from the narrow lanes of the city centre. San Clemente offers features that other Venetian hotels cannot: green gardens, plenty of space, a swimming pool.
Capri: Hotel Punta Tragara
Capri is one of the very best honeymoon destinations in Italy. A beautiful island and an exclusive holiday destination, it has lots of smart hotels. The five-star Hotel Punta Tragara overlooks the famous Faraglioni rocks and is a romantic stroll from the heart of town along a pretty lane. It has a spa, two swimming pools and contemporary-style decor.
Bellagio: Grand Hotel Villa Serbelloni
Bellagio is a wonderfully picturesque and romantic resort on Lake Como and the Grand Hotel Villa Serbelloni is its most prestigious hotel, dating back to the nineteenth century. The five-star facilities include a good-sized outdoor swimming pool, a beach on the lakeshore, two restaurants and plenty of old-fashioned luxury. Honeymooners can potter around the pretty Bellagio lanes, or tour the lake by boat.
Procida: Albergo La Vigna
The four-star Albergo La Vigna offers affordable and charming honeymoon accommodation off the beaten track. The small family-run establishment is set in its own vineyard on the little island of Procida, in the Bay of Naples. The hotel’s a peaceful and romantic refuge, where house wine can be sipped on the terrace, and guests can enjoy wine therapy massages, a jacuzzi, and breakfast served till noon.The little harbourside restaurants at Corricella on the island are in one of Italy’s most romantic settings.
Liguria: Villa Rosmarino
Close to Camogli and in easy reach of Portofino, this elegant boutique B&B has a lovely location with views over the Ligurian coast. It’s a luxurious place to stay, with stylish decor, a great design ethos, an outdoor swimming pool, sitting rooms and friendly owners.
In addition to this selection, here are a few more suggestions:
+ The new Borgo Egnazia resort in Puglia is a large, luxurious five-star resort with a wide range of facilities and activities, including a golf course and a cookery school.
+ Hotel Rivalago, on the shore of the peaceful Lake Iseo in northern Italy, is a comfortable well-run hotel with lakeview balconies and a lakeside swimming pool.
+ Just outside Bellagio on Lake Como, Borgo Le Terrazze has three-star suites and studios and a panoramic swimming pool. One guest writes in his review “I even proposed on our balcony overlooking the lake it was so beautiful.”
+ Personally I find Sorrento a bit overwhelmed by package tourism, but the coastal town still has its charms and is a practical base. Maison La Minervetta is an excellent and very special hotel with amazing views from the bedrooms’ huge windows.
On this site