In our search for places to visit and stay on Ischia, my wife came across Il Monastero and fell in love. We booked two nights, reserving our third night on the island for a hotel in Forio. As we were taking a car on the island, we were told to park in a commercial lot near the Albergo; there was a special price for hotel guests. Arrival on the island was easy, we did not get lost, and when we arrived at the parking lot the two ladies running the place were delightful. All went as smoothly as you could ever want. We did have a bit of a schlep to get to the hotel, but we were prepared for this, with wheeled luggage. (in Italy, especially when booking hotels in the Centro Storico of a city, be prepared to walk some distance from the parking to the hotel!)
We arrived at the base of the little mountain upon which the hotel is perched and took the elevator up. The peace and quiet, sense of calm of the place fully fitted it's monastic past! Check in was a breeze, the staff very helpful, cheerful and kind. Our room had a great view over the village of Ischia Ponte. It was, indeed, small. The shower area smaller. But it was impeccably clean, very quiet, and, in a word, perfect.
As we had two dinners before moving to Forio, we elected to have one dinner in town and the second at the Albergo. The staff recommended an excellent restaurant on the main street, Da Ciccio, and made a reservation for us. Good thing, too, as there was a religious festival in town and the place was packed! Both dinners were spectacularly good. The Albergo serves aperitivo on the terrace and there is a second place which is open to the public and serves light snacks and drinks. All very civilized, and great to be able to observe the goings on down in the village and on the water, from up on high.
Just to make things really special, the town was celebrating their patron saint. Every evening there were activities in town and at midnight, fireworks which we could observe straight out our window or from the terrace!
The day after our arrival, we decided to rent electric bicycles for the day, and tour the island. This was arranged directly from the hotel. To our surprise, the rental place was the parking lot where we left our car. We got to interact with the ladies managing the lot and the bicycles. They were great! It is possible to tour the entire island in one day on these electric bikes. We were a bit concerned about the traffic, but after a few minutes we got used to it and it went smoothly. I recommend this way of getting around, because when you decide you want to stop and visit something, or grab a coffee or lunch, you never have to worry about parking your car! And it really is a small enough island to tour completely by electric bike. If we were to return, we would definitely rent them again.
Now, if the Albergo could figure out a way to add a nice swimming pool, that would be absolutely out of this world!
All in all, nothing but good memories of Il Monastero and Ischia!
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- Also Known As:
- Albergo Il Monastero Ischia
- Albergo Il Monastero Hotel Ischia