Live It The Italian Way!
L'Officiel India|October 2020
The grandiose and charm of iconic Italian stay-ins is everything enough to strike you first.
Atul Behl

Remember the presence of exclusive Italian vineyards that formed a major backdrop for Indian skipper Virat Kohli and Tinseltown actress Anushka Sharma’s awe-inspiring wedding in Tuscany, leaving behind millions of their fans at home gasping to take a tour to these wonderlands?

Fortunately, I too had my time last November to escape into the serene landscape, narrow alleys, luscious vineyards and blissful indulgence in the Mediterranean cuisine, especially some of the world-class cheese makers. Upon arrival, I first lodged into the Belmond Grand Hotel Timeo built in the heart of the hilltop town of Taormina. Trust me when I say, the experience was no less than being on a virtual sail along the Sicilian coast.

Being the first elegant villa to be built in the city in 1873, Timeo gazes out across the coast towards the volcanic Mount Etna and beyond from the craggy cliffs, sitting next to the ruins of an ancient Greek theatre. Without any doubt, you can breathe in the full spectacle of Sicily, bask in the manicured gardens, savour sensational cuisine and fuel your imagination with cocktails on the Literary Terrace — just like generations of celebrated guests before you; including, modernist author D.H. Lawrence who had set up a camp on the hotel’s terrace to write Lady Chatterley’s Lover in the 1920s.

Acquiring the property in 2010 from the Floresta family from Prussia, who had owned it for more than 100 years at helm, the Belmond group of hotel chains today offer 71 suites and bedrooms, split between the main building and the adjacent Villa Flora, to its guests at Timeo.

Ahh! And not to forget the spacious suites and bedrooms split between the main building and the adjacent Villa Flora. Most of the Taormina accommodation sported a hypnotic view – over the clustered terracotta rooftops of the medieval town, and beyond to the headlands brushing the Ionian Sea. Something unforgettable amidst all were the luxurious bedrooms, along with a sprawling terrace, and an expansive marbleem bellished bathroom with a Jacuzzi made the two nights stay magnificient affair.

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