Maison La Minervetta

Sorrento, Naples & Amalfi, Italy Book from Book from £202 per night

A delightful cliffside boutique hotel perched above Sorrento's harbour, with 13 immaculate and artful rooms
This place is fab. In fact it's the fabbest place we visited in southern Italy, and one of the best small hotels we've seen anywhere in the Med. What makes it so special? First thing you'll notice is the warmest of welcomes: staff treat you like friends and never forget a face. Second, the rooms: huge picture windows, designer fittings, arty touches and bold splashes of colour make each one feel special. Then there's the breakfast: one of the most cornucopian spreads we've seen in what is essentially a B&B. But, as you’ve probably guessed, what really sets this place apart are the views. Spanning 180 degrees, they plunge over the fishing harbour, glide across the mirror-still seas of Sorrento, to the volcanic cone of Vesuvius on the horizon.

La Minervetta is just outside Sorrento, away from the summer crowds but only 10-15 minutes' walk from its bustling restaurants, bars, shops and harbour. You're also within easy reach of Capri, Positano, Amalfi and Vesuvius, while fascintating Pompeii and even Naples are day-trippable by train. All of this makes Sorrento the single best base for exploring the area, and La Minervetta is the stylish, intimate and immaculately cut jewel in its crown.

Highs

  • Views beyond measure; gazing over the Gulf of Naples and the roofs of Sorrento will take your breath away
  • An intimate family-run feel, with delightful staff who have a wealth of local knowledge
  • The beautiful living areas, sun terrace and Jacuzzi pool, perched above the colourful marina grande
  • The immaculate design delights at every turn and every room has a sea view of some kind
  • Sorrento is an ideal base for those wanting to explore. Pompeii, Naples, Capri and the Amalfi Coast

Lows

  • Book early; this place is deservedly popular
  • While the hotel welcomes children, the cliffside setting and stylish interiors aren't ideal for younger kids
  • Space around the pool is limited to only 6 loungers, but to compensate guests have free access to a nearby beach club
  • The hotel only serves breakfast, though there are lots of other restaurants within walking distance
  • Local traffic, especially at weekends, is a nightmare - use the train and boats instead

Best time to go

Summer is extremely busy: come in spring (April-May) or autumn (mid September-October) if you possibly can. The weather then is perfect for gentle exploration, and swimming is quite feasible until early November (though in April it's chilly).

Our top tips

The service here is really welcoming and friendly. If you let the staff know that you're celebrating your honeymoon or anniversary they'll provide a free welcome tray, and if they know it's your birthday they'll get you a cake!

Great for...

Beach
Honeymoon
  • Boutique Hotel
  • 13
  • Breakfast only (walk to restaurants)
  • All ages welcome
  • Open all year
  • Outdoor Pool
  • Spa Treatments
  • WiFi
  • Pet Friendly
  • Disabled Access
  • Beach Nearby
  • Off-street Parking
  • Restaurants Nearby
  • Air Conditioning
  • Guest Lounge
  • Terrace
  • Garden
  • Gym
  • Concierge Service
  • Beach club access
Room: Room 4

Rooms

From the hotel’s rooftop entrance, glide down to the 13 sea-facing bedrooms where walls of windows maximise the views - those on the left look to the Gulf of Naples, those on the right to Sorrento.

The sole Junior Suite is decked out in teal, turquoise and lemon, with a balcony, a sitting area and a Jacuzzi tub.

Most Superior Rooms have views from the centre of the building, but two hang on each corner, with superb panoramas from dual windows. One faces Sorrento, but our favourite is all sea, with the pale peak of Vesuvius breaking the scene (and a sliver of neighbouring hotels visible, so be mindful of when to close the blinds).

The Deluxe Rooms also sit in the middle, with glimpses of Sorrento's marina grande (vertigo sufferers should keep the swivel-panes closed) and plenty of colour combos to choose from – ours had cool white walls and navy accents.

Perfect for couples, the Junior Studio offers a balcony and added privacy in exchange for a smaller bathroom and limited views. It’s accessed via exterior steps and is therefore only available during high season.

All rooms have been lavished with exquisite attention to detail: Balinese Buddha heads and Grecian model boats mingle with Philippe Starck lamps and top-notch fittings. Bathrooms enjoy vivid striped tiling, piles of fluffy towels and an array of luxury toiletries.

Features include:

  • Air conditioning
  • Bathrobes
  • Central heating
  • Cots Available
  • Extra beds
  • Hairdryer
  • Minibar/fridge
  • Phone
  • Safe box
  • Terrace
  • Tv
  • WiFi

Eating

A healthy, beautifully presented and daily-changing breakfast buffet is laid out on the kitchen table. Every bowl of oranges, pot of lemon jam and tray of sugar-dusted cornetti is as delicious on the eye as on the stomach. Cakes and pastries are fresh from the hotel manager's bakery and you might find jugs of fresh orange or pear juice, soft cheeses or slivers of prosciutto. Cooked eggs and American-style pancakes are always on offer. In summer, take your cerulean-glazed plate out to the parasolled terrace and sit facing the rising sun, the endless sea and the cone of Vesuvius.

For lunch and dinner, wander down the hotel's zig-zagging path to the marina grande for fresh fish at one of the waterside restaurants: try relaxed Da Emilia or Delfino, where we enjoyed an amazing seafood risotto.

Alternatively, take a 10-minute stroll into town for a wider choice of eateries. For a special occasion, splash out on Michelin-starred Il Buco’s fantastic seafood, steaks and wine list. If you have a car, staff recommend Don Alfonso in Sant'Agata sui Due Golfi (10km), where father-and-son chefs Alfonso and Ernesto turn out impeccable, largely home-grown Italian fare.

Features include:

  • Bar
  • Breakfast
  • Minibar/fridge
  • Restaurants nearby
Eating:
Activity:

Activities

  • Sorrento may be touristy but it has not lost its soul: on Sundays the whole town turns out for a morning stroll along the corso, while in the evening shops open late for limoncello-fuelled purchases of leather goods, ceramics and fabrics
  • Wander down the stepped path to the marina grande’s small beach and restaurants; hotel guests get free access to Delfino beach club (and you can catch a bus back up the hill)
  • If visiting Pompeii, aim to arrive early (before the crowds) to see the Roman shops, villas and amphitheatres that remain remarkably intact after Vesuvius' AD79 eruption
  • Herculaneum is another Roman town wiped out (and preserved) by volcanic flows; its suburban setting is grim, but it's much quieter than Pompeii and boasts fine friezes and mosaics
  • Buses and taxis run from Pompeii and Herculaneum to the base of Mt. Vesuvius; climbing to the ash-swirling, lunar-rocked summit takes about 45 minutes (weather permitting)
  • Enjoy Naples, the islet of Capri, the pastel hues of Positano and the art-rich town of Amalfi (all reachable for daytrips)

      Activities on site or nearby include:

      • Boat trips
      • Fishing
      • Hiking
      • Historical sites
      • Kayaking
      • Museums / galleries
      • Sailing
      • Shopping / markets
      • Snorkelling
      • Swimming

Kids

All ages are welcome, but La Minervetta is best suited to children over 8. Any younger and you'd be worried about the steep paths, cliffside drops and fragile artworks. It might also work for families with a baby.

Best for:

Babies (0-1 years), Teens (over 12)

Family friendly accommodation:

All rooms and suites can hold a baby cot or extra bed; the Junior Studio has space for a baby cot only. Note that the number of spares available is quite limited, so request early and get written confirmation from the hotel.

Some Deluxe Rooms can interconnect with Superior Rooms or Junior Suites (ask for a special price if booking these in low season).

Families Should Know:

The setting is somewhat perilous for younger children.

Kid Friendly:

Our guests' ratings...

Based on 6 independent reviews from i-escape guests

10/10
Room
10/10
Food
10/10
Service
10/10
Value
10/10
Overall

Of all the places we booked for our 2 week trip to Italy, this was our absolute favorite, and fortunately the one we booked for an entire week. The perfect place for an extended stay. Perched on the cliff and just outside of the hustle and bustle of Sorrento, La Minervetta was our sanctuary. Our room overlooked Marina Grande and beyond, to Vesuvius and Naples. Panoramic is the only way to describe it. The hotel is gorgeously and impeccably designed by the owner, Marco, and it feels like you're in his home, on holiday. Regardless of where our eyes were focused, in the common areas or our room, there was some curio or book or piece of art that was unique and of interest.
Floriana, the general manager, was a constant source of information on where to eat and what to do, both in Sorrento and on boat excursions to the Amalfi coast and Capri, and the tip of the iceberg when it came to service. Breakfast on the terrace every morning was idyllic and the perfect way to start the day, and also the place to be for sunset, again accompanied by attentive and personal service. I cannot express enough how much we loved this hotel and all the staff associated with the it. Bravo and brava to all associated with this gem of a hotel. We will be back.

10/10,

This is the most stunningly beautiful hotel.

9/10,

This place was exceptional. It looked wonderful online but the reality exceeds the expectations. What friendly people, what beautiful space, delicious food and a stunning secret path down to the Marina Grande. I would like to come back here every year forever.

10/10,

I went to the Minervetta with three friends and we all loved the hotel. We felt very comfortable and stress-free there. The staff were exceptionally kind and helpful and we loved the rooms, the gorgeous views and the wonderful pottery, paintings and furniture.

10/10,

The view of Vesuvius was astounding and the inspiring decor was a constant surprise and delight. The evening drinks on the terrace with the little side dishes of nibbles were a real treat. Not given a 5 for room as although super superior room (you pay for the panoramic views) you could hear scraping from the terrace above while staff getting ready for breakfast from 6.30am, also beds too hard for bad hip! Best restaurants La Basilica (Pizza and pasta) and the Il Bufilito (mozzarella and buffalo steaks). Marine Grande in the evening more provincial with beautiful seafood and views to die for, but take mosquito spray for evening time!

10/10,

I have travelled fairly extensively and I can honestly say, this was one of the best hotels I have ever stayed at. The view from our bedroom was breathtaking, the furnishings and attention to detail amazing and the breakfast served wonderful. The staff were very personable, helping us make travel decisions as well as recommending local restaurants, etc… The layout of the hotel is very conducive to relaxing, with little nooks to hide away with a good book. I can't say enough about the hotel, except to say we will be back.

10/10,

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Rates for Maison La Minervetta