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San Domenico Palace Hotel

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San Domenico Palace Hotel

Taormina, Italy

Located within the exquisite confines of a former Dominican monastery, the San Domenico Palace Hotel is one of Taormina’s most characterful hotels. Complete with a two Michelin-starred restaurant and stunning views down to the sea below it’s ideal for those looking for both charm and grandeur. The main entrance is through the original 13th-century cloisters that are beautifully laid out and dotted with palm and citrus trees. On the opposite side, you’ll find an extensive terrace and garden area as well as an inviting swimming pool with views of both Mount Etna and the sea. While the rooms are relatively simple in their decor, they are comfortable and well equipped.

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The guest rooms at the San Domenico Palace Hotel are modest but comfortable. A number used to be monks’ cells and have charming frescoes painted above their doors; however, they also tend to be smaller in size than rooms in the more modern sections of the hotel. All are well equipped and boast pleasant bathrooms, often featuring hand-painted ceramics. A number of rooms offer charming sea views and boast their own balcony or terrace.


Located on the lower level of Taormina, below the main Corso Umberto shopping street, the San Domenico Palace Hotel is pleasantly removed from the busiest sections of town. For those keen to visit the various boutique shops and restaurants of Taormina, it’s a short five to ten minute uphill walk to the main thoroughfare. The Greek Theatre is approximately a 20 minutes’ walk and the cable car down to the beach at Isola Bella is around ten minutes further.

Food and Drink

Breakfast is served in the grand Les Bougainvillées restaurant, which was once the monastery’s refectory. In the central section of the hotel, the small and intimate Principe Cerami offers a formal dining experience to match its two Michelin stars. For those wishing for a more casual meal, Les Bougainvillées offers both Sicilian specialities and international dishes. A number of scrumptious restaurants can also be found a short walk away in Taormina.

Facilities and Activities

There’s a pleasant outdoor pool terrace surrounded by sunloungers. Outdoor seating areas can also be found in the beautiful gardens and the cloisters dotted with palm and citrus trees. Additionally, a small beauty suite offers a range of treatments from aromatherapy massages to pedicures.

Our opinion

While the rooms here are slightly more modest than the rest of the property would suggest, we love the characterful ambience and stunning historic setting of the San Domenico Palace Hotel.

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    Alternative places to stay nearby

    Where possible, we like to offer a range of accommodation for each stop of your trip, chosen by our specialists as some of their favourite places to stay. To help you make the right choice, we give each property a rating based on its facilities and service, but we also look for hotels with distinct character or a location that can’t be bettered.

    Experiences while staying here

    The following activities are designed to give you the most authentic experiences of the area where you’re staying. We work with local guides, who use their knowledge and often a resident’s eye to show you the main sights and more out-of-the-way attractions. Our specialists can also suggest outdoor pursuits and activities, such as cooking classes, that will introduce you to the traditions of the area’s inhabitants.