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Hotel Caruso, Ravello 

2 Piazza San Giovanni del Toro
Italy 84010
Tel: 39 089 858 801
view web site ›'s insider take:

The legendary Hotel Caruso Belvedere (its fans have included Greta Garbo, Jackie Kennedy, Humphrey Bogart, and Virginia Woolf) was reconstructed and reopened by Orient-Express Hotels as the Hotel Caruso in summer 2005. This hostelry started in 1893 as Pantaleone Caruso's small pensione within the 11th-century D'Afflitto Palace, then grew to occupy the entire place. Now it has 47 rooms—most with terraces featuring Ravello's spectacular hilltop sea vistas, and 15 with private gardens. There's a heated infinity pool worthy of the name, a gym, and a Wellness Centre offering massages and body treatments. The hotel's two restaurants make the best of the views; there's also a poolside snack bar, and a piano bar with 18th-century frescoes. A free shuttle connects with Positano and Amalfi; morning boat excursions are also gratis. But "gratis" is a relative term here: 22 of the rooms have per-night price tags of a thousand euros or more.

From the editors of Condé Nast Traveler:
A five-year restoration by Orient-Express Hotels has transformed this eleventh-century Moorish-influenced palazzo into a property as dazzling as its location overlooking the Gulf of Salerno. The frescoes burst with color, the gardens are a sensory bonanza, and the extraordinary infinity pool makes it seem as if you could float out to the turquoise sea a thousand feet below. Room details—mosaic-tiled floors, televisions that rise out of stylish cabinets with the push of a button—are a study in comfort. Spa therapies are performed in-room—at least until the Wellness Center opens later this year. The hotel maintains a fishing boat to take guests on complimentary explorations along the Amalfi Coast. Add to all this a stunning terrace restaurant and superb service and it's hard to imagine leaving. —2006 Hot List

When to go: April through mid-July, and September and October.

Which room to book: Many of the 52 rooms have distinctive architectural details, but No. 301, the 700-square-foot Jackie O Suite, has a terrace, a garden, and a private pool (doubles, $723–$887).

Amenities: 24-hour Room Service, Bar/lounge, Gym, Pool

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