Black Book Luxe Travels: Positano, Italy
The Amalfi Coast never fails to seduce. Awe-inspiring landscapes, enchanting architecture and captivating historical and cultural sites; winding roads past opulent villas, terraced vineyards and lemon groves; steep slopes, small beach inlets and pastel-coloured fishing villages that cling to the cliffside. Kissed by the Gods, this sophisticated coastline is Italy’s front-cover splash, Positano its dazzling dream town, and Capri its chic island escape. It’s a dashingly diverse panorama of colours; a “dream place that isn’t quite real when you’re there”, wrote John Steinbeck after visiting. So, it’s no surprise that there’s no shortage of some of the world’s most alluringly luxurious places to dine and sleep.
Where to stay?
Undoubtedly the most iconic of Positano’s offering of accommodation is Le Sireneuse, a boutique five-star hotel that feels more like a grand, private home. If you’re not already planning to stay here, we must ask why not? Its panoramic terrace is the home of the best seats in town to experience the breathtaking views from the scenic cliffside. Each white-walled room is filled with vintage antiques and potted plants, decorated with fabrics from Italy and the Far East, and each marbled bathroom has a whirlpool tub and is adorned with handmade tiles. If that’s not enough, it’s got its own spa and a private boat that runs twice a day along the coast, with time to jump in and explore the waters. It’s a delightfully intimate base for any Amalfi adventures.
What to eat?
One of the prettiest places to dine is Le Sireneuse’s in-house Michelin-starred restaurant, La Sponda. It’s an unreal location for a date night to remember: entirely lit by candlelight once the sun goes down, it’s the definition of romance. For elevated Italian dining, washed down with a pink Bellini, this is where the fashionable head! If one panoramic terraza view of the azure sea wasn’t enough, Zass at Il San Pietro is also a Michelin-starred fine-dining establishment set in the hotel’s own mountainside farm, decorated beautifully by fuchsia florals. For something a little more traditional and truly Italian under a sky of lemons, Da Paulino is the spot to visit while you’re on the island of Capri. If you can’t get enough of the luscious lemongroves, treat yourself to the lemon risotto, or the homemade limoncello!
How to get there?
There’s no airport or train station in Positano; it’s truly a scenic escape. Our favourite way to get there is to drive from Naples, so you can stop for impromptu pictures or an authentic pizza or two along the way. But be prepared for winding roads, sharp cliffside corners and a severe lack of lack of traffic order. It’s each driver for themselves! Alternatively, if you’re not quite up for the driving test, there’s the Positano shuttle which offers a private driver, departing from Naples airport or train station direct to your hotel. Finally, if you’re prepared for lots of chopping and changing, and an extra-long journey, there is always the option of the train: from Naples to Salerno, Salerno to Vietri Sul Mare, and then from, there, bus to Positano.
Paulino restaurant: @pinkines
Daytime positano: @kate_keogh
Pool and hotel: @ananewyork
Deck chairs: @manju_js
Capri view: @pinkines