Top 10 Unique Lodgings in Italy
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1. Trulli Hotels
Masseria Torricella is a trullo on the outskirts of the town of Alberobello and is surrounded by clay, olive, and prickly pear, providing an eco-friendly luxury experience with a heated pool, hot tub, and cycling paths crisscrossing the landscape. A trullo is a unique architectural design in the Puglia region. The whitewashed walls and conical roofs resemble a fairytale dwelling. The distinctive shape helped locals of the southern region keep their homes cool in against the summer heat and warm in the dry winters. A number of the antique homes have been modernized over the years and turned into vacation apartments or boutique hotels. The rooms offer a private bath, and a stunning experience found only in Puglia and Southern Italy.
2. Sassi Hotels
Sextantio Le Grotte della Civita has 18 lavish rooms in the oldest area of the cave dwellings to feature a composition of traditional design made with local materials, along with minimalist contemporary touches. The sassi zone of Matera refers to the caves dwellings in the region located in Southern Italy. Locals dug homes and churches out of the soft tufa stone and utilized the subterranean dwellings for centuries until as recently as the 1960s. A number of the cave-homes have been refurbished and modernized with designer touches and contemporary luxuries. The wild ambiance touches on the history of the city and the Basilicata region while providing guests the unforgettable chance to reinterpret their ideas of authentic Italian tradition.
3. Treehouse Glamping
Italy is drawing visitors from around the world with new and different perspectives on the unique contours of the country’s topography, with tourist finding more than just the art and architecture of the big cities. In Sicily’s Madonie Adventure Park, located in the province of Palermo. Tents are suspended from the trees at more than 20 feet above the forest floor, allowing couples, families, and individuals to feel as though they are nesting with the birds. The grounds also provide local food, a collection of nature trails, and captivating adventures for family fun activities.
4. Ultimate Luxury
Italy’s star-rating system ranges between 1 and 5 stars, with an extra emphasis on luxury hotels rated as 5-star deluxe. However, the ultimate in glamor, comfort, and extravagance appears in the form of Milan’s Townhouse Galleria, which classifies itself as a 7-star establishment. High-end services are tailored to satisfy each guest and included amenities such as personal butlers versed in the guest’s native language, a wellness area, concierge services, and private limousine transfers. The hotel also hosts The World of Leonardo da Vinci Museum, a gallery dedicated to models, machines, and works of the artist and inventor. The hotel is located amidst the grandeur of Milan’s premier shopping corridor, the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II, which was erected in the 19th century.
5. A Village Resort
Erase whatever image you have of when thinking of the word “resort,” because one of the truly unique establishments in Italian accommodations is the idea of restoring and transforming abandoned villages into something new, exciting, and welcoming to visitors from across Italy, Europe, and the world. One such resort is Sagna Rotonda, which was a small mountain village in Piedmont. The eco-friendly estate is powered by renewable resources and low-energy light bulbs. Wide windows and marvelous vistas offer views to the Valle Maira, which remains little known to visitors outside of Italy, providing a perfect escape into nature or an extravagant romance in view of the mountains.
6. A Chocolate Lover’s Dream
Chocolate is more than candy in the region of Umbria and its capital Perugia, but is a sweet obsession, embodied in the nearly 100-room Etruscan Chocohotel, which is dedicated to the popular confection. The restaurant carries a chocolate-themed menu, and three floors of the hotel are dedicated to different types of sweets with Milk Chocolate, Gianduja—a popular sweet spread with chocolate and hazelnut, and Dark Chocolate floors. The Etruscan motif emanates from the heritage frescoes decorating the rooms of a particular floor, combining the ancient history of the Umbria region with the contemporary culture of Perugia through its chocolate delights. There is also a panoramic terrace offering views of the Umbrian plains and hills leading to Assisi, with a swimming pool filled with crisp, cool water, as opposed to thick, creamy chocolate.
7. Mountaineer’s Paradise
Rifugio Bella Vista provides a luxurious eco-friendly experience inside an igloo at over 9,300 feet above sea level in the South Tyrol region of Italy, also known as Alto Adige, an autonomous, German-speaking province in the Alps separating Italy from Austria. The sustainable lodging is only offered in winter with three authentic igloos carved from snow and ice. 100 percent of the electricity derives from renewable sources and the accommodation offers the luxury of soaking in the highest outdoor sauna in Europe with panoramic views of the Oetztal Alps. Fans of winter sports have options such as skiing, snowboarding, or glacial hikes in the winter. In the summer, although the igloos are not available, the landscape provides exceptional scenic hiking and boating on the glacial lake.
8. Exceptional Charm
The overlooked region of Marche houses a quaint bed and breakfast known for its unique rooms located inside remodeled wooden barrels. The eco-friendly establishment is situated on family-owned farmland, which grows its own organic food used in the meals prepared for guests. The windows overlook the terrace for views of the enchanting landscape of the region known for its rugged mountains, lush forests, and stretches of glistening beach. The tranquil accommodation is located near the church of Santo Stefano and the sandy shores of San Benedetto del Tronto, an active fishing port on the Adriatic coast.
9. A Hidden Tower
Torre Prendiparte is one of the last remaining 12th-century towers in the city of Bologna, the capital of the Emilia-Romagna region. Over 100 towers once created the lavish skyline of the city, and served as fortresses or refuge for the noble families who funded their assembly. The tower has been fully restored with all 12 stories open to visitors, with a single room adorning the top floor. The tower stands nearly 200 feet tall and provides a breathtaking view of the city known for its captivating cuisine. The stairwell wraps around the walls leading upwards for a dizzying climb, reflecting the impregnable stronghold built to protect and defend the Prendiparte family in the Middle Ages.
10. In the Tradition of Napoleon
Rome is known for boasting lavish accommodations and elegant palaces dating back to the times of emperors and Roman legions. However, the 16th-century Roman palazzo Residenza Napoleone III captures the imagination of guests with remarkable 16th-century luxury. The boutique hotel known as Palazzo Ruspoli has hosted many distinguished guests since its creation in the mid-1700s and served as the home of Napoleon III in the 1830s.
Only three of the palace’s rooms are open to visitors with the most coveted being the Napoleon Suite. Guests immediately feel the wealth of the former nobility upon entering the grounds decorated with massive wooden doors and a stunning marble staircase. The Napoleon Suite is decorated with antique furnishings, giant oil paintings, parquet floors, hand-stenciled walls, and original 16th-century tapestries. There is also an exquisite marble bathroom that feels like a palace onto itself.
11. An Eco-Friendly Bonus
A yurt is not something visitors to Italy, nor Italians, would associate with the traditions of the country. Yet the accommodation connected to the heritage of Central Asia, most notably Mongolia and Turkey, have made a big impact on the luxury camping industry of Italy. Maremma, a province of Southern Tuscany, hosts a unique bed and breakfast situated on 210 acres in the heart of the hills near a selection of traditional medieval villages.
Goats, sheep, horses, and cows graze on the grass allowing guests to experience farm life and organic produce grown on the property. Guests of the yurt can explore Tuscany, lounge on the secluded beaches of Maremma, or partake in the daily activities of the farm to learn more about the agricultural history of the region. There are also plenty of medieval towns and hot springs to visit, representing greater Tuscany and the unique properties of the particular province.