Belmond Grand Hotel Timeo
Via Teatro Greco 59, Taormina
There’s an ancient Greek ampitheater at its back, and unobstructed views of the ocean and Mount Etna at its front, making this a pretty stunning place to rest your head while you tour Sicily.
Belmond Villa San Michele
Via Doccia 4, Fiesole
This is one of those hotels that manages to make itself the destination, rather than Florence ( check out our winter guide to the city here)—while the city is within striking distance (15-minutes away by car), you won’t really want to leave the hotel’s gorgeous terraced gardens, stunning city views, and chic suites. The villa—which dates back to the 15th century—used to be a monastery, and it is said that Michelangelo carved its façade. There's also a fantastic cookery school on site where guests can partake in immersive cooking lessons taught by Executive Chef Attilio Di Fabrizio. For littles, the Young Chefs Academy is a fun way to spend an afternoon.
Via Privata Fratelli Gabba 7b, Brera
Even in the middle of the city, the Bulgari maintains a sense of peace and quiet, thanks to its location on a leafy, private street in the Brera District. The hotel is predictably slick (black marble and granite, floor-to-ceiling windows, and Italian furniture), and it’s a consistent favorite for people in town for Milan fashion week or the furniture fair Salone del Mobile. The building itself is a renovated eighteenth-century palazzo that gives a sense of history to counterbalance all the glossy modernity. And there are little nooks (in the garden, at the bar, in the library) that are cozy but appropriate for meetings or just getting some work done.
Capri Palace Hotel & Spa
14 Via Capodimonte, Anacapri
While the opulent, chintz-bedecked Grand Hotel Quisisana takes up a lot of the local oxygen, we much prefer this chic little hotel. The food is delicious (the on-site restaurant has two Michelin stars), the spa is fantastic, and you can walk down the hill to get sandals handmade in Capri at the city’s best shoemaker.
Faro Capo Spartivento
Sardinia’s oldest lighthouse (built in 1856) is now home to a small, luxury hotel, which is set apart on a promontory that’s only accessible via the hotel’s shuttle. The wild, untouched setting is as gorgeous as the panoramic views of the sea. It’s intimate enough (six junior suites in total, along with two cottages set apart on the property that are topped with glass roofs) that you chat with the chef each day about what you’d most like to eat—and then you can take those meals in the open-air. Abutted by white sand beaches, the property offers snorkeling, scuba diving, along with mountain bikes and the option to ride horses up and down the coast.
Fendi Private Suites
Via della Fontanella di Borghese, 48, Campo Marzio
Walking into the lobby sort of sets the tone for the experience here with Campana Brothers sofas, vintage Fritz Hansen chairs, Gio Ponti mirrors, a wall lined with art books, and Lindsey Adelman light fixtures—it’s all very aligned with the luxury-first approach of the Italian fashion house. (It also happens to sit atop the newly redesigned Fendi flagship store in the Tridente neighborhood.) The seven pied-à-terre style apartments maintain a modern, high-design bent—grey paneled walls, sharp Fendi Casa furniture, jewel-toned velvet chairs—and the staff operates with an anything-is-possible attitude. For breakfast, opt for pastries and coffee served in bed.
Four Seasons Milan
Via Gesù 6/8, Quadrilatero della moda
A breakfast of green juice and poached eggs in the wooded courtyard of a converted fifteenth-century convent might not be what you’d expect from a hotel in the center of Milan, but that’s what you get—and it’s as delightful as it sounds. The rooms are large and light-filled; here and there, frescos and architectural details from the original convent reveal themselves. And the bathrooms are enormous, with toiletries from Acqua di Parma. The hotel is within easy walking distance of the Duomo and a number of parks, museums, restaurants, and any luxury store you can think of. If it rains—or even if it doesn’t—decamp downstairs to the Patricia Urquiola–designed spa for a few hours. The pool marries history (ancient vaulted ceilings, in this case) with minimalist chic.
Piazza di Pasquino, 69, Centro Storico
Tucked away in a 16th-century palazzo just off Piazza Navoa, this ten-room strong townhouse feels like one of those gems you scour Airbnb for but can never seem to find. The thing about the aesthetic of G-Rough is that it's intensely personal and unstudied—there are pretty, old tiled floors and time-worn frescoes mixed with Gio Ponti and Guglielmo Ulrich furnishings, as well as artwork from the owner’s private collection. For those looking for a bit more space, the two suites on the top floor, each with its own outdoor terrace, can be combined for a kind of makeshift penthouse apartment. Overall, the hotel is about as un-hotel like as it comes: There’s no formal concierge, but there’s a very attentive butler who will see to your every whim, and there’s no food on the premises, save for a modest continental breakfast menu and some smaller bites during aperitivo hour; but plenty to eat and drink within striking distance.
Grand Hotel et de Milan
Via Manzoni 29, Quadrilatero della moda
The neo-Gothic Grand Hotel et de Milan has been open since 1863–and run by three generations of the same family. Local design firm Dimore Studio recently renovated the interiors, which marry classic elements (parquet wood floors, Oriental rugs) with modern touches like custom made seating and sleek, sculptural lighting. Given its history, it’s a cultural experience on its own, and it’s within walking distance of some of the city’s best—including La Scala and the fashion district on Via Montenapoleone.
Piazza San Giovanni del Toro 2, Ravello
As if its location in an 11th century palace weren’t enough, this hotel literally sits above Ravello, with stunning views of the sea at its feet. They offer daily boat rides around the Amalfi Coast (or to Positano), or you can linger in the infinity pool perched above the city.
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