Of all the hotels on the Amalfi coast, let me tell you why Hotel Santa Caterina is the place to stay. While there are amazing properties in Positano and Ravello, Hotel Santa Caterina the only luxe hotel with direct sea access. Meaning you can walk out of your room, hop into the glass elevator (holy views) and voila you have arrived at the incredible rock pool/ bathing area. No shuttle rides. No long walks. Even better? If you charter a private boat, the captain literally pulls up to your beach chair. You simply can’t beat that–especially if you’ve consumed too much limoncello the night before and need to clear the cobwebs with an early morning dip in the sea.
The staff is what makes this place so special. While very old-school formal, they have a way about them which makes this hotel the least pretentious place on the planet. Full of amazing characters from Pino: the restaurant the maître d’, always decked in a tuxedo, who affectionately teased me about my pine nut allergy (“Let me guess, Mrs. Halip–a pine nut cappuccino this morning?”) to Juicy: one of the fabulous owners decked in glitter one-pieces and over-sized gold sunglasses (the Italians really have a way of pulling anything off) and last but not least, Bruno: the hotel pianist with a slicked-back ponytail who kept the party going into the late hours (warning: his musical stylings coupled with the insane Mediterranean sunset may cause one to burst into happy tears).
Surrounded by lemon groves, terraced gardens, sophisticated decor and unbeatable views, this family-run hotel has my heart. I never wanted to leave and I can’t wait to return.
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