Castello Di San Marco
What We Love
- A suite in a Sicilian castle, including breakfast, a bottle of wine and a perk for longer staysThe welcoming hotel team, making you feel at home from the moment you arrive
- The private beach, only a few steps from the hotel
- The suite you'll stay in, and the daily breakfast and welcome bottle of wine you'll receive
- The incredible dining, like the buffalo mozzarella and basil-infused olive oil
What To Know
- Staying in a 300-year-old castle in Sicily
- Spend days horseback riding, scuba diving or playing tennis
- There are plenty of places to relax between the charming gardens, huge pool and the private beach
Stately structures and archways rise to meet you on the cobblestone pathways to Castello di San Marco, a grand 300-year old castle on the coast of Catania, in Sicily. Set between the beautiful blue of the Ionian Sea and the skyward reach of Mount Etna, and with horse riding, scuba diving, and sightseeing on offer, this hotel is an exquisite escape, and one where you won’t know what to explore first.
Spend your days lazing on the hotel’s private beach, taking a dip in the large turquoise blue outdoor swimming pool, playing tennis on the floodlit court, visiting Aquae Leonis Spa for a treatment or enjoying authentic Sicilian food with modern influences in the hotel’s traditional dining hall. Or simply admire the stunning design: the softly illuminated interiors, stonework and fine décor reflect baroque Sicilian style, and in such a dignified setting, you’ll feel just like royalty.
Located in the park surrounding the castle, rooms are well-furnished and decorated in unique Sicilian style. The spacious, bright Junior suite has a large living room, separate bedroom and a bathroom with a shower. Your suite also has its own shaded terrace.
The traditional dining hall Mastri Flavetta serves delicious, healthy Sicilian food. Head Chef Isidoro Messina was raised in a fishing village before traveling the world, and his food reflects this fusion of influences. Eat outdoors during the summer in Gazebo dell’Acquicella. Il Palmento was an original wine press in 1892; today, it’s a converted wine lounge and bar, offering guests a selection of spirits, Italian grappa, dessert wines and local tipples from Sicily and larger Italy.
From massages and mud baths to manicures, a range of holistic health and beauty treatments are on hand in the soothing, harmonious setting of Aquae Leonis Spa. Treatments are created around your personal targets, whether that’s toning, stress relief, or even improved posture.
Nestled on a private beach (so about as close to the sea as you can get), and with three other beaches in the area, Castello di San Marco is just a few miles away from the romantic town of Taormina and five-minute drive from Calatabiano. It’s ideal for visiting Mount Etna. You can also go horse riding, scuba diving, and exploring the magnificent Greek ruins nearby.
How to Get There
Close to the beach and to the crowded Taormina, very nice and relaxing structure with a reasonable amount of rooms. Nice rooms, big and clean, maybe not very modern all with private patios. Beautiful gardens and pool area, relaxing - and we were there in high season. Good breakfast, very friendly staff. Charming.
Slightly disappointing beach and surrounding area with very limited restaurant options. The restaurant at the San Marco is sensational but if you don't want fine dining the alternatives are limited.
The pool area and grounds are stunning so for many the rather ordinary beach may not matter at all.
When looking for a holiday, I wanted to go somewhere with good food, good people, good service, good weather and have a touch of class. I found all of the above at Castello Di San Marco.
I would recommend hiring a suite for the air conditioning and space. Our suite was lovely and comfortable and with four of us we didn't feel we were tripping over each other. The grounds are beautiful and the staff attentive and courteous.
Each evening there is something to do from wine tasting to tasting exotic coffees in the old mill room. There were a few weddings being held at the castle with music playing until midnight but they didn't spoil the stay and the music always stopped dead on time.
Lots of choice for breakfast with fresh pancakes or waffles also on offer. Food at dinner was delicious and authentic.
There is a private secure car park if you've got a car which is useful and added to feeling safe.
The location is great for visiting other parts of the eastern coast and for trips up mount Etna. We booked our excursions through the hotel and received a much more personal service during the tour.
This hotel is definitely in our revisit list. Try it, I'm sure you'll love it as much as we did.
Beautiful original "castle" and outbuildings with faux medieval accommodation in the absolutely gorgeous grounds. The restaurant produces lovingly crafted dishes and on the two occasions we dined in our bill was only about 130 euros, pretty reasonable given that we had a decent bottle of wine each time. Lovely pool area and a so, so beach where we were charged 15 euros for sunbeds, so we used the adjacent ones for 10.
The nearby restaurant Blue something gets good reviews on TA but we were underwhelmed.
We stayed mid-week for four nights at the end of August, and missed the weddings, etc. which some other reviewers have noted. We were most impressed with the staff, especially Alexandra in the restaurant. It seems that most of the employees are of long standing.
The rooms are comfortable but not recently modernized. The air conditioning works well but the controls aren't easy to comprehend. The TV is a small flat screen in the living room of our junior suite. We would have liked to have complimentary bottled water in the room, but boiled the kettle instead.
The pool is large and very clean. The only critique is that the umbrellas are too small and there is little other shade. The beach is a few steps from the pool and has comfortable chairs and palapas. These are only available to guests who book directly with the hotel rather than through a travel site.
The parking lot is accessed by hotel key and most of the spaces are covered.
The food and service are top-notch. We ate here all four nights as there seem to be few good choices in the immediate neighborhood. We had a nice casual lunch in a beach restaurant on one day. The included breakfast is an excellent buffet.
The gardens are exquisite and well tended.
We made one day trip by car to Taormina, less than half an hour away, but were put off by the number of tourists and the hassle of parking in a tight parking lot. We made another day trip by car on a route recommended by the hotel to the foothills of Mount Etna - only two hours and very interesting.