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“Sizzlin in Taormina”

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Hotel Villa Belvedere
Ranked #5 of 87 Hotels in Taormina
Certificate of Excellence
Los Angeles, CA
Level 3 Contributor
15 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“Sizzlin in Taormina”
Reviewed 27 August 2008

I booked this hotel at the last minute and literally received confirmation the morning of my arrival. I knew from the multiple correspondence with management that it was going to be an enjoyable stay. I was driving from the Port and the hotel provided directions, however if you are driving in Taormina, forget directions once you get into town, you just need to follow the signs, which are extensive and detailed out by hotel. In the email correspondence, the hotel confirmed that they had parking (very reasonable priced), which is very important in this area, as its over developed, but attractively so. Check-in was interesting and turned out to be expensive! I originally booked a room at euro 120, however I was arriving a day earlier and a top room balcony room was available. They showed me both rooms, which turned out to be the kiss of death. The original room I booked was lovely, spacious and well lit with a landscape view, but in the back of the hotel. The top floor, full balcony room had a similar layout, however the balcony provided a full view of the Mediterranean and down the coast. After seeing that room, how could I take the other room? It was an additional 40 euro a night, and after some back and forth and no caving in from the hotel, I took it. It was well worth it especially to sit in the late afternoons while reading or even on the computer. It should be known that this hotel is quite simple, however its the location that is stunning, set into the mountain above the sea, as many of the hotels are. The pool is also simple, but very comfortable with lounges and umbrellas as well as great sea views. Other reviewers had said they had troubled finding lounges, but I didn't encounter this, although at times I looked around and they were nearly full. The hotel has a poolside restaurant only opened for lunch (open all day though for drinks, etc by the pool - more self-service than true pool service) and I ended up eating there twice as it was very reasonable and just a skip away from my lounge. Their is free (rarity) wi-fi and they mentioned you have to be in the lounge, however I picked it up on the top floor on the AMAZING balcony! Nearly all of the staff were friendly and spoke good/decent english. The only problem I encountered was from the younger woman who worked at the front desk. One afternoon I decided to go into town and asked for a lunch recommendation and the restaurant turned out to only be open for dinner (would be more forgiving if they were just simply closed that day, etc), but it looked like a cool spot. Later that day, I asked the same woman to book me a reservation at the same restaurant (you would have thought she would have asked if I had gone there for lunch!, but this was a testament to her grave aloofness) , when I arrived at the restaurant, they had NO reservation. It was a small restaurant off the main square behind one of the cathedrals and didn't cater to foot traffic (...Dell'Nouvo..or something along the lines). They threw an extra table outside, albeit right next to a column, however it was a good meal with excellent wine and a quirky owner (wearing flip flops and a tank top). This girl as the front desk however should be chatted with before a real problem occurs. Breakfast was typical in the morning, however the cappuccino was delicious. Mostly cold options served. It was really the simplicity of the accommodations and the setting that was enjoyable. There appears to be many 5-star accommodations in this resort town, so if you're looking for a spa, fitness ctr, etc, this is not for you. If you're looking for clean, comfortable rooms (and willing to spring for the top-floor with a great balcony), friendly service, and a nice relaxing pool, then I would highly recommend Villa Belvedere!

  • Liked — Amazing Cliffside Location, Friendly and Attentive Staff
  • Stayed August 2008
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank Free2Trvl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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London, England
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 August 2008

My family and I have just returned from a twelve day stay at this hotel and we all had a wonderful time.
The staff were very friendly and helpful, the location was fantastic and the rooms were spotless, all in all we had a great time, one of our best holidays ever.
We never had any problems getting sun beds by the pool, the pool is clean, and the poolside lunches are really fantastic, my son had spaghetti pomodoro everyday!!
It would have been nice to have a mini fridge in the room, and our room only had a shower, but these are only minor faults. Sea view rooms with a terrace are well worth asking for.
It’s only a short walk to the many restaurants, ask the reception for recommendations as they are always spot on, we particularly liked Tiramisu, and ended up going there three times. There is a small shop up the road where you can buy water, beer, wine etc.
I would recommend this hotel to anybody who asked for a hotel in Taormina, and would love to go back again sometime.

  • Liked — Pool, clean rooms, friendly staff
  • Disliked — No bath or mini fridge
  • Stayed August 2008, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Flashharry45
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Wokingham, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
14 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 August 2008

We spent a great week in Taormina, and Villa Belvedere was a great base for the stay. It is in a great location and despite the price looking steep for a 3 star hotel, this is misleading as the star system is based more on facilities than quality and Villa Belvedere is just missing some ticks in the boxes (e.g. no restaurant for dinner).

As a quick round up on the positives:-
Well tended gardens and generally excellent upkeep of the hotel’s shared facilities - they have wifi, a book exchange, internet access if you have no computer, printing facilities (for boarding cards etc)
Good breakfasts: - fresh juices; pastries; cold meats; cheeses; fresh bread; good, strong coffee; cereals etc. I know some people like cooked eggs, bacon, sausage etc – but to be honest that’s just not Italian, and in any case you’ll be eating yourself silly at lunch and dinner anyway
Good staff – if you have any question the desk staff are pretty good, the night porter was great and always remembered us, cleaning staff were really nice and always said hello, breakfast staff were nice etc
Pool area was really nice – this is no mega resort pool, but it is great for a quick dip, and the views are spectacular, overlooking the bay and of course amazing views of Mt. Etna. They do fresh lunches at the pool bar area – different menu every day – good quality, local fare
Location – sitting on Via Bagnoli Croce it is a short walk from the main shopping/restaurant area (Corso Umberto and little streets off it), and is in a reasonably quiet area without it being a bit isolated at night. There are a couple of nice hotel along this road, so always felt safe at night. It is also really close to the cable car down to the beach area at Mazzaro (by the way the hotel has a pretty good deal to take you in a car to a local beach including the bed hire etc).

To balance things, there are maybe a couple of things to point out:-
Don’t go expecting opulent bedrooms – this is Sicily, and unless you pay really high-end then things are slightly more basic. I must admit it took a day to adjust to this after a week in Sorrento at a larger hotel where the rooms were a bit more luxurious (read: character, not luxury)
Air-con is extra. We should have known this before we went (my fault), but for the money we paid for the sea view room with balcony etc, I kind of felt that air con should be included. In the height of Summer it’s not really optional. At EURO 4.6 per person per night it cost us EURO 67.20 for a week. It kind of rubs salt in the wound whey would turn it off every night when you went out for dinner and in the day when you are out). It’s not politically correct in these eco-conscious times to expect it to be on all the time, but when you’re paying that much for a room plus the air con, you want the room to be cool when you come back for a siesta or after a meal at night.

All in all it was good – definitely worth a stay at the prices – just go into it with the right expectations.

By the way – Taormina has some really nice restaurants across the spectrum of budgets. We ate at some nice places like Maffei’s, but equally had some great nights in cheaper osteria like Il Baccanale and Il Ciclope. Best value for drinks and people watching quotient isn’t Mocambo or Cafe Wunderbar (although they are good), but it is a place called Re di Bastoni (along same street but couple of hundred metres towards the Porto Messina/Teatro Greco end of the street.

  • Liked — Location, views, staff
  • Disliked — Paying extra for air-con
  • Stayed July 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank 2much2do
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Peacehaven, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
149 reviews
42 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 273 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 August 2008

Prices at this 3-star hotel may be more 4-star but you will have a 5-star experience! The building is venerable but 'with it', the gardens and views are fabulous, the pool lunches simple but delicious, the staff wonderful. It is the most gorgeous, romantic place you could wish for. We adored it!

  • Liked — The views from the pool terrace
  • Disliked — We loved EVERYTHING!
  • Stayed June 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank ReinhardW
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London
Level 4 Contributor
46 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 August 2008

We stayed at the Villa Belvedere for 6 nights in early/mid August 2008 and we would return without hesitation. This is a wonderfully maintained and managed modest-sized hotel, with stunning views, excellent service from all members of staff, a lovely pool with excellent pool-side lunch and refreshments service and offering, and an excellent buffet breakfast. The hotel is well-located, easy at hand to the main activities of the town while still being a bit removed from the hustle and bustle of the town, which is very croweded in August. We think it is one of the nicest, most enjoyable places we have stayed for a summer relaxing holiday in southern Europe. We look forward to returning.

London, England
18 August 2008

  • Liked — The staff and the location
  • Stayed August 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank BruceFraser
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
derbyshire
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 August 2008

We stayed at the Belverdere for 2 weeks and enjoyed the whole Sicily experience. This hotel deserves an extra star for it's welcoming staff who could not do enough for it's guests. We had a terrace with beautiful views over the bay. Rooms are kept very clean and it is in garden surroundings. Plenty of choice at breakfast and the poolside lunches were delicious. We felt like a visitor to a home not a hotel. A restful place. This was our first Italian holiday and can't wait to go again.

  • Liked — cleanliness and politeness with friendly staff
  • Disliked — perhaps tea/coffee facilities in rooms
  • Stayed July 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank midlandslass62
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
UK
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 August 2008

My family and I have just returned from a wonderful week in Villa Belvedere (mid-July 2008)

The view from our balcony room was stunning, the decor of the whole hotel was exceptional and the staff were very helpful and accommodating. It has a three star rating, but this can only be down to the lack of a restaurant (the hotel does provide snacks) as the accomodation is firmly in four star territory.

The only difficulty we had was finding the hotel (our Sat Nav was completely fooled by the switch-back road lay out) but after a couple of days spent reversing back down cul-de-sacs, the serpentine route becomes second nature. Any car bigger than a Fiat Punto is going to be a real handicap though as the streets are narrow, the corners sharp and the double parking endemic.

The pool is nice and clean, and the pool side bar is very handy and does a good line in freshly sqeezed orange juice. The sun-deck is a bit small for the number of people though, and there is a tendency for early morning "towel-booking" of the sun-loungers to take place.

The nearby Giardino restaurant (left at the top of the drive and ~300m up the hill on the right) is worth a try, particularly if you are a Coeliac, as they offer a Gluten free menu.

Keep the room windows shut at night because the biting insects, whilst invisible, pack a punch.

Helpful?
3 Thank ItaliophileUk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel Villa Belvedere

Property: Hotel Villa Belvedere
Address: Via Bagnoli Croci, 79, 98039, Taormina, Sicily, Italy
Phone Number:
Region: Italy > Sicily > Province of Messina > Taormina
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 Luxury Hotel in Taormina
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Villa Belvedere 4*
Number of rooms: 49
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hotel Villa Belvedere is a delightful and romantic boutique hotel situated at 5 minutes walking from the center of Taormina. It is an ideal hotel for couples who are looking for a charm and relaxing oasis surrounded by a lovely garden always in bloom. With an amazing view of "Baia di Naxos" and the mount Etna Villa Belvedere its a perfect location for your Sicilian holidays. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Villa Belvedere Hotel Taormina
Hotel Belvedere Taormina
Hotel Villa Belvedere Taormina, Sicily

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