A really good Italian hotel will cosset you with creature comforts, seduce you with style and elegance and make you feel at home with friendly service. Use this website to help you find the perfect place to stay during your visit to Italy. We have tried and tested every hotel featured and can vouch for the locations, standard of facilities and level of service.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Imperial Hotel Tramontano Sorrento

Historic hotel in peaceful setting is handy for the centre of Sorrento

Imperial Hotel Tramontano Sorrento
Gardens at the Hotel Tramontano
An excellent hotel in the centre of Sorrento, the Imperial Hotel Tramontano has a fascinating history.
The hotel lies in a peaceful location away from the main street, Via Vittorio Veneto, in beautiful gardens. Guests can enjoy the views of Vesuvius across the bay and superb sunsets from the Tramontano’s terrace.
The famous song Torna a Surriento (Come back to Sorrento) was composed by Neapolitan poet and artist Giambattista de Curtis on that very terrace in 1902.
The hotel has large, elegant reception rooms decorated with paintings and antique furniture. The old courtyard and garden have rare Mediterranean and sub tropical plants as well as local flowers and citrus trees.
The luxuriously furnished guest bedrooms and suites have views either of the sea, the courtyard or the gardens.
There is an outdoor swimming pool with its own bar, a 16th century chapel and an elevator to carry guests down to the beach.
The hotel restaurant, which serves breakfast, lunch and dinner, is under the direction of Alfonso Iaccarino, the owner of the famous Michelin-starred Don Alfonso restaurant at nearby Sant’Agata su due Golfi.
Torquato Tasso, who is considered to be the greatest Italian poet of the Renaissance, was born on 11 March, 1544 in a house that now forms part of the elegant, four-star hotel.
The poet travelled about in Italy constantly during his 51-year life but came back to Sorrento towards the end to visit his beloved sister Cornelia who had never left the resort.
With its stunning setting in pretty gardens overlooking the bay of Naples, it is not surprising that the Imperial Hotel Tramontano has provided inspiration for other famous writers who have stayed there since.
It is believed Milton and Goethe visited the historic building and, more recently, the hotel has accommodated American writers James Fennimore Cooper and Harriet Beecher Stowe.
The Norwegian playwright Henrik Ibsen is said to have written Ghosts during a long stay at the Imperial Hotel Tramontano in the mid 19th century.
Only a five minute walk from Piazza Tasso in the centre of Sorrento, the Imperial Hotel Tramontano is in an ideal position. Guests can enjoy the tranquillity of the setting but are within easy reach of Sorrento’s shops and restaurants. The hotel is also handy for the port at Marina Piccola and the railway station in Piazza de Curtis if visitors wish to travel further afield.
Editor’s note: ‘I will never forget the orange trees in the beautiful garden or relaxing with a glass of wine on the Tramontano’s terrace while watching the sun set.’

For more information, to check prices and to book a room at the Imperial Hotel Tramontano, go to our hotel booking partners Hotels.com and Expedia UK

Why stay at the Imperial Hotel Tramontano in Sorrento?

The Tramontano is right in the centre of Sorrento, overlooking the Bay of Naples. Known by Italians as La Gentile (The Noble One), Sorrento is a beautiful resort with a mild climate and excellent tourist amenities, making it an ideal holiday location.
The historic centre has a wealth of elegant architecture and Greek, Roman and medieval buildings to visit as well as superb hotels, restaurants and shops.

The Imperial Hotel Tramontano is close to Piazza Sant’Antonino, named after Sorrento’s patron saint. The square has a statue of Sant’Antonino Abate and is home to Basilica Sant’Antonino, parts of which date back to the 11th century.

You can walk from the square down to Marina Piccola, from where boats and hydrofoils depart to Naples, Ischia, Capri, Positano and Amalfi.

In nearby Via San Francesco next to the Villa Communale is the Chiesa di San Francesco, famous for its pretty Chiostro (cloisters), parts of which date back to the 14th century.

What to see in Sorrento

In the historic centre of Sorrento there is a wealth of beautiful architecture illustrating the fascinating history of the town, which was inhabited by Greeks and then Romans, who called it Surrentum, a name derived from the myth of the Sirens who tried to tempt Ulysses.
There are still remnants of the Greek defensive walls to be seen at Porta Parsano Nuova and in Via Sopra Le Mura.
You will see a real gem of Greek architecture as you walk down to the fishing village of Marina Grande along Via Marina Grande. You will pass under the original fourth century BC Greek Gate, a round arched gateway built from square cut blocks of stone. When you emerge from the passageway into the sunshine you will have a stunning view of the sea and the beach of Marina Grande.
In the characteristic narrow shopping street Via San Cesareo there is an elegant 15th century loggia, Sedile Dominova, originally built as a meeting place for the nobility and sumptuously decorated with frescoes.
Sorrento is well placed for visiting the resorts of the Amalfi coast by bus or car and the roman ruins at Pompei and Ercolano or the fascinating city of Naples by train.
Visitors can also take a boat to Naples and the islands, or sail round Punta della Campanella at the tip of the Sorrentine peninsula to visit Positano or Amalfi.

Directions: Leave Piazza Tasso in the centre of Sorrento along Via Luigi de Maio and continue along Via San Francesco into Via Vittorio Veneto where you will find the Imperial Hotel Tramontano on the right.

Restaurant recommendation:  Ristorante Pizzeria Zi’ntonio in Via Luigi de Maio is a short walk from the Imperial Hotel Tramontano.
The air conditioned interior is decorated with hand painted ceramic tiles from Vietri sul Mare on the Amalfi coast. On the ground floor the tiles create the setting of a pergola in a vineyard while upstairs they represent the coastline of Sorrento seen from out in the bay of Naples .
While you wait for your meal the waiters will bring you savoury snacks and freshly baked strips of pizza dough to nibble.
There is a comprehensive menu of antipasti, pasta and risotto and fish and meat dishes as well as an extensive pizza list. These are cooked to order in a traditional wood oven.
There are plenty of wines from Campania and further afield and if you choose a white wine it is always served beautifully chilled.
Zi’ntonio (which translates as Uncle Tony) is run by Mariano and Michela and members of their family. Many of the waiters have been on the staff for years, which helps to provide a homely and welcoming atmosphere.
Editor’s note: ‘My favourite dish is Risotto alla Pescatora (seafood risotto) complemented by a crisp, white Falanghina wine from Campania.’

Local specialities: Try gnocchi alla sorrentina, little dumplings made from potato, egg and flour cooked in a rich tomato sauce with mozzarella and basil, or scialatielle ai frutti di mare (fresh pasta strips with shellfish).
A typical fish dish from the area is pezzogna all’acqua pazza, white fish cooked with tomato, garlic and parsley.
Sorrento is a good place to try an authentic pizza, a dish born in nearby Naples. Try Pizza Margherita (with tomato, mozzarella and basil) created in honour of Queen Margherita, wife of Umberto I.

Local wines: White: Light dry, fragrant Falanghina goes perfectly with fish and dishes made with mozzarella, such as insalata caprese.
It is made from grapes grown on the slopes of Vesuvius, along the Sorrentine peninsula or near the Amalfi coast and you don’t very often see it outside Campania, let alone in other countries.
Look out for producers such as Feudi San Gregorio from Avellino and Ocone from Benevento , who are considered to produce high quality wines.
The name falanghina is thought to derive from the latin word phalanga,  meaning stake or pole, in reference to the early Greek method of training vines to poles. This proves the wine has very ancient origins and was probably the forerunner of other Campanian white wines, such as Greco di Tufo and Fiano di Avellino.
Falanghina is best drunk young and well chilled.

Shopping: Taste limoncello ( Sorrento’s lemon liqueur) while on holiday and then buy a bottle of it to take home with you. Inlaid wooden objects and locally produced leather goods are also good buys.

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