Monastero Santa Rosa
What it is
A 17th-century monastery on the Amalfi Coast turned into an ultra pampering 20-room retreat with an infinity pool and Michelin-starred restaurant.
What it isn't
Soulless. The hotel retains thoughtful nods to the building’s original inhabitants (for example, each room was named for a medicinal herb the nuns once grew in the on-site gardens).
What we think
On the Amalfi Coast, arguably the most visually stunning destination on earth, it takes a lot to wow. And yet Monastero Santa Rosa is among the most jaw-dropping stays in the entire region, thanks to its four levels of manicured gardens, spa complete with a hydro pool, domed herbal steam room, crushed ice fountain and tepidarium, and infinity pool lofted over the Mediterranean. Rooms were decorated with Italian antiques cherry-picked by the hotel owner, Bianca Sharma, and are fitted with Jerusalem stone bathrooms, wrought iron beds and Italian linens, plus Santa Maria Novella pomegranate bath salts. It’s well worth upgrading to a suite for a private bougainvillea-swathed terrace that peeps out on the Gulf of Salerno. Guests in-the-know beeline to the Sunset Terrace for, ironically, breakfast; there’s no better place for a cappuccino than the monastery’s roof, where your view is a panorama stretching from Positano to Amalfi.
You're here because
When you’re in a country as ancient as Italy, you can’t bear to stay in a new-build. Which is why this 1681 convent—home to the brilliant nuns that invented sfogliatelle pastries (a sort of cannoli/crunchy croissant mashup), and transformed into a luxury hotel in 1924—is ideal.
The chef of the monastery’s Michelin-starred restaurant, Il Refettorio, Christoph Bob, fell hard for a local woman (now his wife). You can taste his love for the region in every dish, all of which is cooked with a virgin olive oil specially made for the property in Conca dei Marini. One bite of your steamed lobster and chicory and you may just fall in love with a local and move here yourself.
Monastero Santa Rosa is a mere ten minute drive from Amalfi, and 25 from Positano (in other words, your neighbors are truly delightful). Most guests make the trip by arriving at Naples International Airport, an 80 minute drive.
- Ristorante IL Refettorio - Mediterranean