By Jennifer Pelaez
Set on the enchanting volcanic island of Ischia, the largest of the Parthenopean islands in the Gulf of Naples, L'Albergo della Regina Isabella sits on a serene and picturesque bay, surrounded by rocky shores on the outskirts of the delightful fishing village of Lacco Ameno. Framed by magnificent landscapes, luscious Mediterranean vegetation, therapeutic hot springs, and pristine turquoise sea water, it should come as no surprise that this five-star luxury hotel has been a well kept secret amongst the rich and famous since the 1960's, encapsulating the bygone age of Elizabeth Taylor and Jackie Kennedy. Originally built in 1956 by the illustrious publisher and film director Angelo Rizzoli, L'Albergo Della Regina was the happening hangout for the likes of royals and stars including Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton, Clark Gable, Charlie Chaplin, and Sophia Loren. This authentic old-world Italian charm, history, and elegance continues to permeate throughout this island hideaway while also embracing the present, catering to today's jet setters and global power players.
Perfectly combining classic Italian glamour and Mediterranean panache, the Regina Isabella's vibe is refined yet also warm and welcoming. Upon arriving at the main entrance, which faces the picturesque square of Santa Restituta, a feeling of tranquility emanates from the grand marble foyer. The interior décor is a bit reminiscent of typical fifties luxury and classically Italian with lavish furnishings, antique pieces, and Mediterranean style accents, all complemented by works of contemporary artists and some more modern design elements like chic white sofas. This style carries over into the rooms, which have all been recently renovated, yet have maintained their unique and exquisite hand-painted Maiolica floor tiles. All 128 rooms and suites are well-appointed providing the ultimate in comfort and technology, and adorned with Murano glass light fixtures, fine paintings and other artistic décor. The 'Royal Sporting' wing boasts private terraces with your choice of thermal or sea water plunge-pools.
After lounging in the beautiful accommodations, plan to explorethe ancient island which dates back 2700 years. The hotel is conveniently situated near several Ischia island attractions including the Archaeological Museum and characteristic antique shops and boutiques. A full day discovering Ischia's rich history and culture will leave you ready to unwind at the Regina Isabella's charming terrace where you can sit back on sun loungers around the pool and take in the breathtaking panoramic views of the sea and rolling mountains in the distance. Or make your way down to the private sunbathing platform to soak up the sun and warm Mediterranean water. For sea lovers and the nautically inclined or those looking to simply relax in style, the Regina Isabella provides guests with a magnificent Magnum 53, whether planning to dive at Punta Imperatore or discover the blue waters at San Pancrazio.
After all the exploration and oceangoing, the well-known Regina Isabella Thermal Baths must not be missed. Rebalance and regenerate in the world famous thermal waters and volcanic mud which are said to balance body, mind and spirit. On offer is an extensive menu of both medical and beauty treatments, ranging from traditional volcanic mud wraps to advanced massages and relaxation therapies. An expert professional team of massage therapists and beauticians are at hand to create a tailor-made program to pamper and cater to your every need.
L'Albergo della Regina Isabella also features savory and fresh gourmet creations at three restaurants, all offering stunning sea views and numerous delectable traditional Mediterranean dishes that are born from local recipes and health conscious, accompanied by the finest wines. The main dining room for breakfast and dinner is decadently decorated and lit during the day by huge panoramic windows looking out across the bay. Food connoisseurs must reserve at Michelin-star restaurant, Indaco, which presents modern and creative cuisine from renowned chef, Pasquale Palamaro. Afterwards, enjoy a nightcap at the Piano bar or at Caffetteria, where your evening will pleasantly conclude with the lovely sounds of entertainment from local artists which is a perfect ending to a fun-filled day of wellness, Italian delights, and elegant relaxation.
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