Hotel Villa Ducale
Travel Blogs from Taormina
So we finally capitulated and made the 2-hour trip to Etnaland, which is in the middle of nowhere, to the left of Catania.
We arrived at the advertised opening time of 9.30, but were pipped at the post by a hundred or so eager teens and Tweens and their parents...... It's gonna be a loooonnnnnnggggg day, I thought.
Italians have a sophisticated attitude to swimming and water-related activities: access to change rooms, at no cost, which ...
So, we had planned to go to Etnaland today, home of water slides and rides, which the girls had been counting down the sleeps for, bit some bad behaviour put paid to that, I'm afraid!
Instead, we opted for a more low key day and headed to the beach at Fiumefreddo, about 8km down the road. The beach itself was quite rocky, and the water really cold, but we had a nice time ...
... around, especially Mt Etna. We went for lunch at Sine Tempore, which I found a little snooty and definitely didn't offer the the best pasta: Lia had veal a la limone, Nuka the Sine Tempore which had wild mushrooms, Paolo had a pasta that included fresh tomatoes and I had the Norma.
Using our our newfound energy, we made it back to our car and set off for Bronte, home of the pistachio. The GPS put our time of arrival at 3.30pm, perfectly timed to ...
At 8.00am we were driven by a chauffeur to the airport. We checked in with no wait at all and went to explore the airport which took about 10 minutes! Our plane left at 10.55am and was a smooth flight arriving in Catania at 11.50am. We then boarded a bus which took us to the terminal. We waited 30 minutes for the luggage to arrive on the conveyor. At last we proceded to the exit where we were met by another chauffeur who took us to the Una ...
... I was talking to a good friend of mine here who told me that she and a buddy were renting a car and driving through Sicily. She asked me if I wanted to come along. Even though I only had a couple days to spare, OF COURSE I SAID YES!! I flew to Catania where they picked me up and then we stayed in Taormina on an amazing beach named Nexos Beach. It was one of the first places that they Ancient Greeks occupied when they landed in Sicily. And I can see why! It is ...
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Historical Traveler Reviews Hotel Villa Ducale Taormina
We recently spent two weeks at the Villa Ducale for our honeymoon. It was the best hotel experience we have had. From our arrival we were greeted warmly and felt like we had arrived at the home of friends. We were taken on to the terrace where we were offered a cold Sicilian plate while our car was parked and our bags were taken to our room.
We stayed here in Sept. 2003 for part of our honeymoon to Italy. While the view was spectaular, and the breakfast was great, the rooms had something to be desired. The towels in our room were very well worn, and ha stains/discolorations on them. Hair was found in one of the towels. The sheets seemed clean. The room was very small and tight. We had requested a "king" or the "biggest bed available" and we had a bed that consisted of two twin beds pushed together. It was hard for us to find space for luggage and us in our room. There was a lot of traditional decorations in our rooms. There were not enough hangers for our clothing. The view was excellent and had a private "patio" for us to have a picnic on for our evening meal. It is rather far from town, and the walk down the hill is strenuous but can be done (we are near 30 and we were sore the next day) but we could never walk up the mountain (especially with luggage). Taxi fares vary but were around 10-20 euro.
Simply Paradise!!! The Hotel Villa Ducale is the finest property we have visited! The Quartucci's and staff continuously strive to provide the necessary time to ensure you feel as if you're part of their family from the moment you arrive at their doorstep. We arrived a few hours early, and without hesitation were catered to with the utmost grace, service and efficiency. The Villa is absolutely beautiful, providing the charm and comfort travelers seek whenever being away from home.
My wife and I had decided to make Taormina one of our stops on our european honeymoon. After a lot of research, Hotel Villa Ducale seemed to be the best pick for our stay ... We had an absolute wonderful time. The hotel had a romantic and relaxing atmosphere, which made it a perfect place to spend a honeymoon , we couldn't have asked for a better place to stay ! . The finest aspect of the hotel was its amazing view of the Bay of Taormina and Mount Etna. Our room had a terrace with a panoramic view that was absolutely breathtaking . The rooms were very clean and elegant . The staff at the Ducale was first class, upon arriving they brought my wife and I a bottle of champaigne and snacks, which we enjoyed on the balcony of our room. It is located in the upper part of Taormina, which is more laidback and relaxing than the centre of town ; however, if you enjoy the nightlife, it is only a 5 minute taxi ride away (approximately ten Euro per ride). They had a shuttle van that would drive you down to the centre and to the beach, but walking takes about ten minutes . What really makes this place is the staff which without exception were fantastic. We have already booked up to go back next year and look forward to seeing Andrea and Rosaria again! If your looking for a place to stay in Taormina, do not overlook Hotel Villa Ducale . I would recommend this hotel to everyone who doesn't want to overpay the expensive Taormina
We arrived in Catania in the early afternoon tired, nervous about being in a new place where we didn't speak the language and feeling pressured that spending all this money might turn out to be frivilous and irresponsible. What if we don't meet our vacation goals! Luckily, we met Allessandro, who was sent from Hotel Villa Ducale, to take us to the Hotel in Taormina. From that moment on, it was effortless and wonderful. We arrived at the Hotel to the open arms of Sebastiano (The Manager). He immediately greeted us, sent our bags to our room, and sat us on the Terrace for a refreshment. I have never seen such a beautiful view. This family owned villa has approximately 13 rooms for quests and each room overlooks the Ionian Sea (The Bay of Naxos) and Mt. Etna. The small, beautiful village of Taormina is stretched out below. That alone is a reason to stay here but there is more...Every member of the staff at this establishment made us feel at home. We were comfortable and it felt like they enjoyed us being there. They were open and naturally warm to all of the quests.Francesca is one of the best cooks I ever met (she prepares the morning breakfast that is unbelievably good). Rosario (the night manager) sweetly corrected my weak Italian phrases each evening and we always felt safe and secure. So as not to embarrass myself by butchering the spelling of everyone else's name, I will say that each person at Villa Ducale was available, resourceful, talented, professional and special.The location of the Hotel was perfect for us because we walked into town (down the stairs) each day (and back up) and, when we were dressed for dinner in the evening, we took the bus down which was very inexpensive and convenient. Since it isn't in the "center" of everything, it really feels like a getaway - a retreat.We're going back. No doubt about it.P.S. We had the pleasure of meeting the owner, Andrea, one evening. Thank you to him for sharing his village and home with us.
This hotel did not honor our reservation--we spent one night there, but as they had overbooked the hotel and the couple coming in the next day was on a honeymoon, the management essentially threw us out (even though we had our written confirmation in hand). In many years of travel I have never been so rudely treated. The management did virtually nothing to assist us or ameliorate the state that we found ourselves in (we ended up leaving Taorimina and moving on to Siracusa which was our next stop)--they did not try to obtain local lodging of similar character nor did they refund/discount the charge from the prior night. While indeed this was just a "screw-up", the handling of this problem by the management was totally incompetant. Only fascinating Mt Etna saved this part of the trip! Don't miss it.
Same as those other reviewers, I liked the Villa Ducale very much for the views, room, and very friendly staffs. However, there were one thing I was not happy about. Though staffs helped us a lot and they are very nice, but the owner was not friendly at all to us Asian. He was very nice to European or American guests, but not for us Asian. I felt uncomfortable for his "look" about us several times, and knew he was not happy to have us Asian in his hotel. It was a pity. Other than that, I loved the hotel very much. So, if the owner will be happy to have us Asian as guests, I sure would like to go back there someday again.
My wife and I have been to the Hotel Villa Ducale in Taormina twice now , I figured I would pass along our wonderful experience of the hotel . Once you visit Taormina and the charming Villa Ducale , you will spend the rest of your life trying to go back . If your ideal vacation is filled with walking tours , afternoons by panoramic terrace , strolling to dinner , open air restaurants and people watching - this is a place you will never get tired of . The town is so so nice : there is never a crowd . Time seems to slow as soon as you arrive . Every room in Villa Ducale has an ocean and Mount Etna view ant the waves sooth you to sleep as the breeze keeps you cool in bed . There is plenty of great shops and local artists who sell their art and visit with you .You will walk everywhere or climb stairs . Directions consist mostly of up and down the mountain . Walking the stairs and seeing the town is much more enjoyable then any gym workout .The centre is car free and all the area and the rest of Sicily are extremely safe . The hotel is just beautiful and the staff very friendly . They will provide anything your heart desires , just ask . The sicilian buffet breakfast and the delicious local snacks in the hotel are wonderful and the bar is well stocked . The sun deck will take your breath away .The view from the rooms can not be explained , there are very few like it in the world , it is just amazing .... there are lounge chairs for those who love the sun and umbrellas provide shade for those who don't . By american standards perhaps the rooms are a little small but so so lovely . Not to worry , you will spend little time in your room . Everything is very clean . We kept the windows open the entire stay (but air-con works perfectly) and never saw one insect . The hotel itself is very interesting : a true sicilian house with only very few rooms with intimate but lively atmosphere , filled with local art and artifacts from the area . The reception desk will give you a printed guide in English to follow as you stroll through the hotel . If you ever do feel the need to leave , the hotel staff can plan day trips and guided tours that will get you out of Taormina and see greek roman temples and ruins , medieval little villages , islands and unspoiled and very safe countryside (Etna and Syracusa not to be missed !) . In one of the other reviews they wrote that it is a place that you will try to get back to for the rest of your life , they couldn't be more correct . We have been lucky enough to go twice and hopefully a third time isn't too far away !!! This is a vacation of relaxation , peace and calm . You will find no other place in the world that captures this as well as Villa Ducale in Taormina , Sicily , Italy .
Stay Here - it's fabulous
I stayed at the Villa Ducale with a friend for four days in June 2003. I've never been in a lovelier place, or had a better time. The hotel itself is gorgeous, flowers everywhiere, views of Mt. Etna and the sea, beautiful furnishings and appointments, and terrific food.But the greatest thing is the service. The hotel bills itself as personal and like a family. It's absolutely true. Everyone, from the concierge to the maids, were friendly, personal, and caring. It's really a wonderful place.
From the moment of arrival throughout our five day stay at the Villa Ducale we were transformed to the beauty and majesty of a majical spot atop the mountain in Taormina. The views were unparalleled as we enjoyed local Sicilian wines from the garden trerrace and our balcony which overlooks mount Etna and the beautiful coastline.The intimacy of Villa Ducale provided for a second honeymoon. The experienced staff was helpful throughout our stay and the morning breakfast on the terrace started each day with a most special touch of style and grace. The shuttle service to the resort beach area allowed us to leave our car in the lot and enjoy the shoreline in a beautiful little cove.We walked down to the town in the evenings and enjoyed a varieety of food and shopping. Andreo, the owner of Villa Ducale provided us with information on the best spots and places to find "down home" Sicilian cooking.An evening concert in the ancient Greek ampitheater which was just a 10 minute walk away from the hotel was breathtaking. We enjoyed an evening of wine tasting and local foods which were delicious at Villa Ducale before the show.We have travelled the world but found a true gem in the Villa Ducale. The owner, the staff and most especoially the spot on the mountain made our stay very special. We will return very soon!