Belmond unveils a new season of extraordinary experiences across its Italian portfolio with an immersive programme of exceptional moments – including a sequence of outstanding new Chefs, an exciting new venture with a globally renowned art gallery, and culturally engaging experiences throughout Italy – cultivating the desire for travel whilst celebrating some of the world’s most breathtaking destinations.
Belmond Italian Hotels openings:
Cipriani, A Belmond Hotel, Venice – Open
Grand Hotel Timeo, A Belmond Hotel, Taormina – Open
Splendido Mare, A Belmond Hotel, Portofino – Open
Villa San Michele, A Belmond Hotel, Florence – Open
Castello di Casole, A Belmond Hotel, Tuscany – 1 April
Splendido, A Belmond Hotel, Portofino – 1 April
Caruso, A Belmond Hotel, Amalfi – 1 April
Villa Sant’Andrea, A Belmond Hotel, Taormina Mare – 14 April
A NEW CULINARY ERA
This year Belmond is delighted to introduce the beginning of a gastronomic awakening with the appointment of a series of groundbreaking new Executive Chefs. These Italian Chefs channel local produce and seasonal cooking throughout their menus, interpreting their native cuisine with endless passion, creativity, and flair; always maintaining the simplicity of the finest key ingredients.
Following seven years at Noma in Copenhagen, Riccardo Canella now returns to Italy to take the reins at Cipriani, A Belmond Hotel, Venice to use his unique international experience to elevate the culinary experience throughout the hotel. Chef Canella will design new concepts for Cipriani’s famed Ristorante Oro, as well as overseeing Cip’s Club, Porticciolo, Bar Gabbiano, and the creative catering for all events. The esteemed Caruso, a Belmond Hotel, Amalfi Coast welcomes Cristoforo Trapani, who has already received recognition from the Michelin guide by winning a star at the Magnolia Restaurant of the Hotel Byron in Forte dei Marmi, Italy. Originally from Sorrento Peninsula, the ingredients of his home country act as the protagonists for his dishes, native products and workmanship marked by simplicity, have become emblems of his creativity: one of them being the Amalfi sfusato lemon, the quintessential symbol of the Amalfi Coast.
At Villa San Michele, a Belmond Hotel, in Florence, veteran culinary artist Alessandro Cozzolino, continues to inspire guests with this year’s introduction of an eight tables only dinner at La Loggia restaurant. During these intimate evenings the Chef will present his personal interpretation of fine dining Tuscan cuisine with the unrivalled views over the iconic city. The restaurant venue, with its enchanting Renaissance arcades, has been readjusted to also accommodate a more casual dining experience with the hotel’s Italian bistro, open for lunch and dinner. This complements the Pool Grill, for a more casual scene overlooking Florence and bordering the century-old Monte Ceceri forest.
From the blossoming gardens of Fiesole to the 1,700 hectares at the 10th century estate, Castello di Casole, A Belmond Hotel, Tuscany, where a remarkable project is underway: the Orti del Castello where a lush vegetable garden is being completed, with peaceful seating areas, to give our guests the opportunity to disconnect in the midst of the Tuscan countryside. Once the vegetables, fruits, and edible flowers are ripened Executive Chef Daniele Sera will incorporate these ingredients in his Tosca restaurant kitchen creating organic, seasonal, farm-to-table dishes.
From the endless rolling hills of Florence to the mountainous terrain in Sicily, at Grand Hotel Timeo, A Belmond Hotel, Taormina where Executive Chef Roberto Toro of the Michelin-star restaurant Otto Geleng, takes guests on a journey discovering authentic Sicilian cuisine across the island: from clam farming in Lake Ganzirri, to the harvesting of pistachios grown on the lava beds of Bronte.
After admiring the glorious Mount Etna volcano from Grand Hotel Timeo’s expansive terrace guests are invited to wander down to the Bay of Mazzarò where Villa Sant’Andrea, A Belmond Hotel, Taormina Mare awaits, with a new immersive experience from June to September, where guests will dine at the pop-up water’s edge restaurant with an elaborate menu by Sicilian Executive Chef Agostino D’Angelo.
Travelling north to Portofino, Splendido Mare, A Belmond Hotel, Portofino reopened last year with its new DaV Mare restaurant headed by Chef Roberto Villa and in partnership with the Da Vittorio Group, renowned for their exceptional culinary expertise with two Michelin starred restaurants. The exclusive collaboration elevates the gastronomic scene of the celebrated Piazzetta and continues to delight palates with signature dishes such as ‘Risotto with Pesto’ and ‘Santa Margherita Ligure shrimps’.
ART IMMERSION WITH GALLERIA CONTINUA, FOUR CONTEMPORARY MASTERS IN THE GARDENS OF BELMOND
For the 2022 season reopening, Belmond has launched a partnership with internationally acclaimed art gallery – Galleria Continua, considered one of the driving forces on the contemporary art scene today, honing in on the most successful artistic talents.
The project, entitled MITICO, marks the inception of Belmond’s participation in Venice’s bi-annual artistic and cultural programming. Four artists will be celebrated by Belmond and Galleria Continua, as they take the spotlight in Belmond’s landmark gardens across Italy.
The four artists explore the connection between local landscapes with individual sensitivities, allowing the public the opportunity to see cultures through a different lens, tapping into the destination’s essence and beauty, ultimately evoking a powerful feeling of inclusivity. Each artist will take centre stage at Belmond hotels delivering their own message to the world – a message of acceptance and community.
The project will commence during the opening week of the Venice Biennale, at the Cipriani, where art consultant, Hervé Mikaeloff, has curated the first installation. One of the world’s most renowned Indian artists, Subodh Gupta will install his work “Cooking The World” in the Casanova gardens. The piece aims to create a collective ritual space for open discussion.
Following this, three major installations will be revealed throughout the month of May 2022. In Tuscany, at Villa San Michele, Argentinian artist Leandro Erlich will install “Window & Ladder” paying homage to the hotel’s incredible positioning over Florence. While immersed in the Tuscan countryside, at Castello di Casole, Italian artist Michelangelo Pistoletto places four etruscan bronze sculptures around the estate grounds, named “L’uomo che accarezza gli alberi”. Culminating in Sicily at Grand Hotel Timeo with Cameroonian Pascal Marthine Tayou, who will instil colour across the hotel’s enchanted gardens.
More details in the upcoming weeks.
CULTURAL EXPERIENCES – CURIOSITY CIRCLES
In the Curiosity Circles, experts from diverse cultural disciplines collaborate with Belmond to create unique experiences which resonate with the portfolio’s history and heritage. These experts curate experiences with genuine authentic connections to the hotel’s locality, providing guests with the opportunity to indulge in a series of phenomenal weekend events dedicated to gastronomy, history and craftsmanship, broadening cultural horizons in truly beautiful undiscovered settings.
At Caruso, we celebrate the glories of antiquity. The 12th Century historic palace, called Palazzo D’Afflitto, after the noble family who owned it, is the starting point continuing on to a surprise private visit of the Herculaneum and the treasures of Oplontis, gems that represent the heart of the timeless archaeological and cultural heritage site. Guests will be accompanied by Lalla and Davide Busatti, third generation of jewellers from the Busatti family. Their guests will learn traditional and advanced jewellery-making techniques in an immersive journey into the world of goldsmithing.
Noto Segreta, an experience curated by Grand Hotel Timeo, invites guests on an immersive tour devoted to personal growth and discovering Sicilian beauty. Guests will enjoy private access to noble residences, savour typical Sicilian cuisine and learn the stories hidden in the capital of Baroque.
At Villa Sant’Andrea and Castello di Casole guests discover the art of wine making, led by wine connoisseur Tom Harrow. In Taormina, where wine is grown from volcanic soil, follow the private path winding among the lava beds surrounding Mount Etna on board the quaint Circumetnea train, visiting some of the most renowned wineries, savouring wine tastings and rejoicing in stories from the expert, Tom. In Tuscany, learn about the secrets of the prestigious wineries with celebrations in the heart of the region, from the families that made its history.