It is the only 5 Star Hotel overlooking the sea of Amalfi and Forbes elected it as the best hotel to stay in the Amalfi Coast. Let’s discover the Hotel Santa Caterina, “among the best structures in which to relax” according to The New York Times.
di Stefania Buscaglia
Ph ©Martino Dini, Lucio Elio
In Campania, south of the Sorrento peninsula, there are fifty kilometers of Costa with infinite splendor: beautiful colors and natural elements that led to assigning the title of Divine to the Amalfi Coast.
A living land, famous for its steep cliffs and for the jagged Costa overlooking the Tyrrhenian Sea that, due to the enchanting vertical geometries that characterize it, appears to the human eye as a huge natural terrace suspended between the cobalt color of its sea and the blue sky that constantly dominates it.
A unique environment that – not surprisingly – UNESCO included among the sites to be protected for cultural and natural value.
Among the towns that dot the Amalfi Coast, Amalfi certainly occupies a prominent position, a town that calls the whole Coast and historically famous for being the first of the Four Italian Maritime Republics.
Here, in Amalfi, there is a family that succeeded in building its success on the art of hospitality: it’s the Gambardella family that, for over four generations, managed the charming Santa Caterina di Amalfi, a charming hotel with professionalism and 5-star luxury located in a liberty villa dating back to 1904, nestled in the rock and overlooking the sea, surrounded by centuries-old gardens, bougainvillea, lemon trees, orange groves and vegetable gardens, that enrich its magic and unparalleled charm. The exteriors are splendid and evocative, where two elevators built into the rock or a path of spectacular beauty lead guests through citrus groves and lush gardens to the private beach club, that includes access to the sea, a swimming pool with sea water, solarium and coffee/outdoor bar and restaurant. Available for guests, the wellness area – where you can take advantage of the gym facing the sea and where you can enjoy the small SPA along with facial and body treatments, including the unmissable lemon massage “Oro di Amalfi”. The possibility to attend yoga classes in the early hours on the suggestive terrace overlooking the sea is essential.
Sixty-six rooms and suites, furnished with exclusive taste and elegance in homage to the classic Mediterranean residences: each apartment is unique for its furnishings and location. The Suites, with large balconies and terraces overlooking the sea, have a small private garden lined with lemon and orange trees. Atmospheres that have known how to conquer great personalities of the show like Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton who – right at Santa Caterina – began their relationship during the filming of Cleopatra, as well as Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, on the occasion of Mr & Mrs Smith; suggestions that have impressed other famous guests who have arrived over the years: from Anna Magnani to Catherine Deneuve; from Meryl Streep to Sting; from Susan Sarandon to Bono Vox, these are just some of the famous names that have been enchanted by the beauty and refined hospitality of this establishment and the cuisine of its restaurants.
There are two Santa Caterina restaurants, both led by Chef Giuseppe Stanzione, a Michelin Star at the La Trabe restaurant in Paestum. Author of a cuisine based on the centrality of the raw material, and on the desire to represent the tradition of the Campania region through a gourmet interpretation, Stanzione stages the typical taste and flavors of the Mediterranean tradition both in the suggestive Ristorante Al Mare, and in the newborn Glicine, gourmet restaurant of the Santa Caterina, where guests can enjoy a fine-dining proposal devoted to research and innovation. Among the proposals, special praise for “spaghetti alla seppia”, served with avocado and salted lemon, obviously coming from the organic citrus grove of Santa Caterina.
A luxury hospitality in which passion and familiarity represent the real highlight of the project. The same qualities that can be found in the other two activities of the Gambardella – Gargano family present in the center of Amalfi: Marina Riviera Hotel and Eolo Restaurant, a gourmet gem in which chef Francesco Serretiello talks about dishes in perfect balance between freshness and tasty creativity.