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Taormina: Hotel Villa Carlotta

Phone: 0942.62.60.58

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Reviewed by: KenC from MA, review #3260

When: September 2012

Wow, this place is unbelievable! The staff takes pride in treating everyone like family; their joy is making you happy. We absolutely loved Villa Carlotta.

Cooking Class, photo by KenC

My wife and I split our time at Villa Carlotta and their sister hotel to celebrate our 46th anniversary. We love this place because the staff takes pride in treating everyone like family. We have never experienced this level of personal satisfaction and sense of belonging.

We were met by Riccardo, manager of Villa Carlotta, and given a warm welcome with complimentary Prosecco. He introduced us to the property and told us what to expect during our stay. We were not disappointed! Details . . . what’s not to love! Our room was absolutely beautiful – spacious and complete with every amenity you could think of. The sea views from our veranda were stunning – a kaleidoscope of beautiful scenery.

The breakfast spread was a feast of Sicilian specialties – savory, sweet, and so delicious. Breakfast items are sumptuous and different each day so expect a wonderful surprise! No need for lunch after such a satisfying breakfast.

We enjoyed the pool and courtyard - a fabulous gathering place that is ideal for catching up with guests to compare notes on restaurants and places to visit. Sandwiches and drinks were ordered at the pool bar and there were many tables and chaise lounges with umbrellas where you can work on a tan or enjoy a bite to eat.

My wife and I discovered a beautifully decorated library/lounge where we spent some quiet time reading our favorite books while snuggled up in super comfy chairs – very relaxing.

Villa Carlotta is centrally located - a short walk into town. We loved the convenience of being close to restaurants and shopping. It was easy to walk to the Greek theatre, Public Gardens, and to meander off the main street to discover special places to photograph.

The hotel staff made restaurant reservations that always gave us top seating preference. They also provide complimentary shuttle service to places of interest including their sister hotel, Villa Ducale where you can order a wonderful meal and drinks. We really enjoyed the diversity of staying at both places during our 10 days in Taormina because each hotel offers a very special ambiance.

One day as we were leaving to catch the shuttle we met Rosaria Quartucci, owner of Villa Ducale. She asked us and another couple from England to join her in the dining room to enjoy freshly squeezed orange juice and some pastry. Much to our surprise, Rosaria then invited us to her kitchen to participate in a cooking class. We felt like we were on the Food Network TV Show in the U.S. We made a pasta entrée and dessert that were absolutely delicious. Glasses of red wine were poured and we were in heaven. The owners are the most generous people.

Villa Carlotta is more than a lovely boutique hotel – it is a blissful state of mind that is hard to describe. You are wrapped in a blanket of kindness.

Reviewed by: Deborah Y from UK, review #2989

When: November 2010

The Lovely ‘Fairy-Tale’ 19th Century Boutique Villa Carlotta!

Beautiful aristocratic 19th Century boutique hotel Villa Carlotta!, photo by Deborah Young

For my third visit to Taormina I stayed at the charming castle-like boutique 4 star Villa Carlotta for 3 weekend nights recently.

On the first evening, when I arrived, Simona was waiting outside the entrance door for me, greeting me like I was a V.I.P. after I got out of the chauffeured car! WOW, I fell in love with Villa Carlotta at once after seeing a very characteristic reception area with huge Arab windows like a dream! She took me to the roof top restaurant to meet Antonella who provided me with a welcome drink – a glass of lovely fresh orange juice. I enjoyed drinking in the galaxy Tower lounge with the lovely ‘red’ coloured lights – very romantic! It has a library next door!

The hotel owner Mr Quartucci came to greet me before Simona took me to a very charming room number 204. I admired my room’s good size luxury en-suite with lovely décor and it was very clean!

Later on, I went to their roof top restaurant for dinner – Antonella and the waiters looked after me so well! I enjoyed Villa Carlotta's delicious home-prepared Anchovies in lemon leaves. Afterward, I enjoyed exploring the elegant Byzantine lounge bar, as well as the aristocratic 19th Century staircases and corridors with some Vintage Roman numeral clocks that made me feel I had time-travelled into the 19th Century!

The next morning, I opened my room’s curtains – WOW, what an amazing sea view at sunrise – like paradise with the palm trees! Best view from room 204!! I enjoyed my breakfast on the outdoor breakfast terrace outside the roof top restaurant with a stunning sea view, Giardini Naxos Bay and snow-capped Mount Etna – the waitresses Maria and Luana looked after everyone first class! Villa Carlotta has a beautiful Mediterranean garden and swimming pool!

They offer you a free cooking class! Mrs Quartucci invited me to join her for a short brief cooking course! She took a photo and recorded a video clip of me filling the cream into the cake, watched by the cook Leonarda at Villa Carlotta!

In the evening, I went to their sister hotel Villa Ducale by a free shuttle. I was excited to meet the staff again, Alessia, Antonio, Luca, Santina and the others, who greeted me. I had stayed there twice in 2009. Villa Ducale’s reception and lounge area have a new décor with the WOW factor! I had a lovely meal on the new-look cocktail terrace. Great night out for me!

Taormina is a very attractive town with many shops and cafes – only a 5 minute walk from Villa Carlotta. The attentive and informative staff would be very happy to help you with booking the excursions, or any information on Sicily, flights, etc. Riccardo helped me with printing my boarding pass for my homeward flight from the computer.

I should also add that Villa Carlotta is disability aware, because they have the elevator with Braille for blind, or partially sighted guests. It has a front entrance door with wheelchair access for disabled or elderly guests (also great for moving heavy baggage with small wheels). I am profoundly deaf myself – they all treated me with such respect!

During my last day at Villa Carlotta, I felt so sad after saying good-bye to all the lovely staff and the owners at Villa Carlotta and Villa Ducale. I would certainly go back there in the future!

My thanks to Mr and Mrs Quartucci, Riccardo, Simona, Antonella, Ajith, Maria, Luana, Leonarda, Alessia, Antonio, Luca, Santina and the other members of the staff for all their kind hospitality with great services!

Reviewed by: Nancy L from TX, review #1620

When: September 2006

Villa Fabbiano [FORMER NAME OF VILLA CARLOTTA] is a beautiful little hotel perched high above the bay of Taormina with wonderful views of the Ionian Sea below. {3 stars}

Rooms are beautifully furnished and vary in size. Ours was #202, a small deluxe double with a fabulous, large terrace. Large bathroom with 4* amenities. Internet access in the lobby is free and fast. The rooftop restaurant hosts the breakfast buffet, the most sumptuous we encountered in two weeks of travel. Room service is free, so I had coffee on our terrace every morning.

Taormina itself is a mere 5-10 minute walk away (make sure you walk through the botanical park). We loved this little gem and its warm, friendly staff and heartily recommend it. Parking available at the hotel for €10 per day.

This review is the opinion of a Slow Travel member and not of slowtrav.com.

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