Design Lovers, UK Weekenders, Taormina Locals
Reason to Stay
Designer Interiors, Removed Location, Hip Clientele
Luxury Design Hotel
Once you've discovered Sicily and done the perfunctory visits to Taormina and less-impressive Catania, you'll likely return on your second visit to find hidden hotel and villas gems concealed around the island's edge. Wedged against the temperamental Mt. Edna but still close enough to hit Taomina's beaches in the afternoon, Donna Carmela is a stunning designer boutique hotel ideal for visitors craving an evolved design aesthetic.
The cream and white-colored hotel rises out of a grassy resort landscape with sculptural garden of synchronized olive trees and dashing resort area with teak decked, free-form pool under swaying palm trees and 180-degree views. The hotel is part of the Faro Nursery, a frequent participant in the Chelsea Flower shows and the creative force behind the hotel's elaborate flora and fauna.
Days are spent exploring local wineries as well as the charming nearby town with it's own version of Carnaval and San Sebastian that's one of the more charming you'll ever experience. But for dinner you'll want to be back at the hotel where the in-house gourmand offers a locally sustained menu from the on-site garden for daily-changing menus of Italian cuisine with a modern twist with surprising pairings from the extensive wine cellar.
We love these 18 rooms, astute design space even in entry-level Superior categories with typically Italian twin or conjoined King-size beds with terracotta stone tiles and pristine white walls with sheer curtains overlooking the gardens. A splurge on the junior suites results in integrated living and sleeping spaces with exposed stacked-stone walls and silky Moroccan rugs under chunky lounge furnishings. Suites feature separate living area with vaulted ceilings and more ornate design collection with large outdoor terraces with the best views in the house. Families in need of even more room, or just the ability to cook in their own kitchen, find a freestanding annex in the main gardens with villa-style amenities.
Hip Clientele, Designer Interiors, Gourmet Eatery
Pool, Lounge, Spa, Gardens, Restaurant