When you become a Tablet Plus member, you gain exclusive access to a selection of the world’s finest hotels, each one committed to providing you with seamless, VIP-level hospitality. Fab Five is a series of hotel collections dedicated to celebrating these truly exceptional properties.
The Amalfi coast and its closest neighbors are where standards are set and benchmarks are established — in the world of picturesque, cliff-hugging village jewels, this stretch of waterfront is legendary, and for good reason. The hospitality dials itself up accordingly: classically proportioned villas and palatial summer retreats stake their stunning claims in lush tiers, peacocking in that good-natured Italian way with an infinity pool here, a candlelit terrace there, and everywhere the Tyrrhenian waters’ painterly backdrop. And it bears mentioning that not only are these already some of the finest hotels anywhere, but they’re made even finer by the fact that they’re Tablet Plus hotels.
Grand Hotel Excelsior Vittoria
The Grand Hotel Excelsior Vittoria benefits from a phenomenal location, right in the heart of Sorrento, high on a cliff overlooking the harbor and separated from the bustling Piazza Tasso by orange groves and acres of parkland. The hotel itself comprises three separate villas, all built between 1834 and 1880. This is a true Grand Hotel in the old style, its past guests including Wagner and Goethe, and the opera singer Enrico Caruso was a resident for a time in the twenties, his suite today remaining more or less as he left it. As if that weren’t enough, Emperor Augustus himself kept a villa here.
Maybe you don’t know Praiano, but it’s a sure bet that you do know the Amalfi Coast, that charmed little crescent of heaven on earth just to the south of Naples, on Italy’s west coast. Some of the world’s most famous hotels lie along this coastline, perched on cliffsides high above the ocean, and most of them are in a traditional 19th-century style — Casa Angelina, though, is proof that there’s a place for modern design even in these most classic environs.
Not so very long ago the glamorous life on Capri was all about seizing the high ground, whether on the hilltop of Capri village or in the equally lofty Anacapri. But there’s new life down by the marina. Partway up the hill, looking out over the ferry port across the Bay of Naples, is the Villa Marina Capri, a classic 19th-century villa that’s been thoroughly renovated, converted into an intimate little 22-room contemporary-luxury boutique hotel.
Hotel Villa Franca
Ideally we’d all have well-to-do Italian friends with a vacation house on the Amalfi Coast. Because while we love a good hotel, there’s something about Positano — the dramatic scenery, the cinematic atmosphere, the possibility of a three-hour lunch that starts with aperitifs and ends with limoncello and cappuccino — that makes you feel like being someone’s glamorous houseguest. Until that invitation arrives, there’s Hotel Villa Franca Positano.
Contemporary design on the Amalfi coast — that alone makes La Minervetta worth noting. And we’re not using “contemporary” as a euphemism for that faceless minimal international style, either; you’ll find little in the way of greys or cream tones in La Minervetta’s twelve guest rooms. Rather than monochrome and minimal, they’re bright and sunny — literally, as they’re open to the light, with views through full-length windows over Sorrento, the Bay of Naples and Mount Vesuvius, and figuratively as well, clean-lined and decked out in vivid tones, anywhere from lime green and turquoise to simple, almost Nordic primary colors.
See all of our hotels on the Amalfi Coast.