5 star hotels




Food & Wine, Luxury, Romance

£ 600 per person - 5 nights


Lavish retreat set in spectacular grounds in the countryside

Private villas suitable for romantic getaways and small family gatherings

Exquisite gastronomic dining experiences, focusing on Sicilian food and wine


20 hotel room, 9 lodges, 1 villa


from £ 600 per person


5 nights sharing a Comfort double room

Daily breakfast

Fully comprehensive car hire arranged at the airport

Travel planning

We can help you with

International flights

Private guided tours of Taormina, Catania and Siracusa

Bike and body rafting excursions on Mt Etna and the Alcantara Gorge


This beautiful resort between Mount Etna and the Ionian Sea provides its guests with the most luxurious stay. Popular with both honeymooners and families, the high levels of privacy between the 20 rooms and nine lodges means you will feel like it’s your own private retreat.


Owned by a family of horticulturalists, the resort is set in the plant nursery, a 19th-century house and cluster of modern lodges surrounded by fields of 5,000 varieties of Mediterranean flowers, trees and shrubs. Inside, fine furnishings, modern art and high-quality architecture make it a wonderful space to lounge in, while the pool is flanked by fragrant shrubs, aloes and cacti.


Massages and facials can be arranged in the hotel’s spa treatment rooms, and if you need to work on your muscles, you can use the on-site Technogym or use the services of the resort’s personal trainer.


Wine tastings, quad biking up Mount Etna and sailing trips can all be easily arranged by the hotel, along with an array of other excursions and activities.


The original 19th-century villa holds 20 guestrooms, and set in their own private grounds nearby are the nine new luxury lodges. All 29 accommodation options have views of the sea, gardens or Mount Etna, and many have private terraces.


The design incorporates elements of the original villa, with furnishings suited to its heritage.


The Deluxe Rooms in the main house are large enough to sleep three people, with two floors and two bathrooms, while the spacious private lodges are ideal for honeymooners or families seeking privacy and more space.


Groups of friends of family will love the Imperial Suite. It sleeps up to 10 people, has six bathrooms and its own private pool, beach access and dedicated staff members.


The resort is particularly renowned for its gastronomy. Start the day with a buffet breakfast of fresh Sicilian pastries, breads and delicacies, plus a variety of hot and cold dishes. 


Later, choose from two menus: the upmarket traditional Sicilian food from the Sintesi menu, or opt for the haute cuisine of La Cucina di Donna Carmela. Either can be taken in the grounds under the olive trees or by the pool during the day, or in the smart restaurant at night. 


You won’t go thirsty, thanks to the resort’s sophisticated Rizobar and a wine list featuring more than 300 quality Sicilian wines.



✓ Restaurant

✓ Outdoor restaurant

✓ Outdoor pool and solarium

✓ Car park


✓ Tea/Coffee Maker

✓ Minibar

✓ Extra Long Beds (> 2 metres)

✓ Wardrobe or closet

✓ Air conditioning

✓ Safety Deposit Box

✓ Soundproofing

✓ TV / Telephone / Satellite Channels


Located between Etna and the blue of the Ionian Sea, the Donna Carmela boutique hotel is in an ideal position to explore all the sites of cultural, naturalistic and tourist interest in the area.


In the immediate vicinity there are some of the most renowned beaches in Sicily but you can also easily visit cities such as Catania, Taormina, Siracusa, Acireale, Piazza Armerina and, of course, organize ecological visits to Etna. The distance from the sea is approx. 3 km.

    andrew Smith
    andrew Smith
    16:49 02 Aug 20
    Expertoitaly (and Antonio) first came to our attention in 2014 when we were... planning a celebratory trip to Italy for 2015. Although we approached a number of household names about our plans and itinerary by e-mail Antonio immediately stood out. He phoned back almost straight away to get to know something about us and what we liked to do. On the back of that discussion he quickly put together a trip and budget. Given his obvious knowledge of the country and his quick grasp of what we were looking for together with the attention to detail it was a 'no brainer' to put our trust in this company. As a consequence we duly enjoyed a 3 week multi-stop trip in July 2015 tailored to suit us perfectly! On return we almost immediately booked to return in October for a short break to 2 of the locations in Tuscany we particularly enjoyed - Lucca and Montepulciano both of which are delightful. We fell in love with Italy and have returned several times since then all courtesy of Antonio: 2016 - A short break to attend the Opera in Verona. 2017 - 2 weeks in Sicily 2018 - the same - we love Sicily and would urge anyone to go. (where we finally got to meet Antonio in Ragusa which was great) We were due to return to Italy this year for a 3 week road trip - albeit with private transfers rather than actual driving - from Verona to just south of Naples - all immaculately put together by Antonio of course. Alas Covid-19 had different ideas. We can only say that Expertoitaly have dealt with this professionally and as speedily as circumstances allowed and have refunded all the monies. We have no reservations about using them again in the future. In fact Antonio is already on standby to reprise the 'lost' trip as soon as this madness ends and unhindered travel becomes possible again - just extended an improved. Andrew & Susan Smith Tadworth Surreyread more
    Vittorio S.
    Vittorio S.
    11:22 19 Nov 19
    Very comfy!
    Jane Domb
    Jane Domb
    17:12 28 Aug 19
    If you are looking to go to Italy for a holiday, Antonio at Experto Italy is... amazing. We have just come back from our fourth holiday he has arranged for us. He sent us to places that days of googling would never have found.He also has a knack of keeping to budget even with my numerous demands! Fabulous fabulous!!read more
    Debbie Law
    Debbie Law
    11:10 27 Aug 19
    Just returned from a fab trip to Italy - all organised by Antonio. His time... and effort to get what was just right for us was amazing.. he had a lot to put up with! We have used Expertoitaly before and will do again. We visited Ischia and Naples. Both very different and wonderful. Ischia is perfect for a good rest (visits to the Giardini La Mortella and the Ravino Gardens are a must). The Gardens & Villas Resort is a beautiful setting, very private, calm with amazing staff. Also the little town of Lacco Ameno has some really nice restaurants. Naples was very HOT! but we still managed to spend 7 hours walking about just soaking up the atmosphere and visiting some of the fantastic historic sights. Visit to the underground roman town is well worth it - it is mind boggling to think it was built thousands of years ago.read more
    julie frenchman
    julie frenchman
    09:16 09 Jul 19
    This is the third occasion that Antonio has organised an Italian holiday for... me. As it was a Birthday celebration involving a party of 10, the arrangements were complex, involving a villa, guides and attendance at the Palio on July 2nd. Without exception everything went exactly as planned. The recommended villa on the Montestigliano Estate, south west of Siena, was wonderful. Our guide made sure we had a full understanding of the history and culture of the Palio which meant that, with a spectacular view over the Campo from the apartment booked by Antonio, we were able to appreciate the event that much more. We shall certainly be going back to Italy with Expertoitaly.read more
    Kay James
    Kay James
    12:08 03 May 19
    We had an amazing trip organised by Antonio, we visited Naples for a few days... then stayed in Sant’ Agata. Both hotels had fabulous amenities and restaurants. The trip was effortless and everything was meticulously arranged. Antonio was also on had for anything we needed during the trip. I would definitely recommend Expert to Italy and we will definitely use this company again in the futureread more
    Grant Stupart
    Grant Stupart
    18:31 16 Aug 18
    Antonio with his meticulous planning and caring service has been solely... responsible for the best Italian holidays we have had. His ability to offer excellent hotel accommodation which provides for every need and requirement is second to none . Hotels that are not main stream , that provide high quality of service in excellent locations are one of Antonio’s strength. It’s great to have a provider that know and understands his market. Grant B Stupartread more
    Jonathan May
    Jonathan May
    18:06 01 Aug 18
    July 2018 _________________________________ Have just completed another 10 day... holiday arranged by Antonio at Expert to Italy. We went with Antonio's suggestion and spent 2 days at Matera and then the remainder in Pisciotta in the Cilento. Matera was amazing and felt completely different to anywhere else we have been in Italy. We loved Pisciotta and the hotel was wonderful with lovely owners who were great at suggesting things to do. We visited a buffalo farm, a vinyard and tooks boats to isolated coves with lovely clear water. All arrangements were absolutely faultless. We would never have found such lovely places without Antonio! 2016 _________________________________ We have just returned from a fantastic holiday suggested no arranged by ExpertTo Italy. Once again the organisation by Antonio was flawless and everything worked perfectly. We spent 5 nights by lake Maggiore and 3 in Cogne in the Italian Alps. Both hotels and locations were fantastic - particularly the Bellvue in Cogne. Please see trip advisor if interested in the hotels as I will give a more specific review there - I'm not a fanatic reviewer but both really deserve it. We have used this company for the past 5 years and Antonio seems to have a real gift for finding fantastic hotels and matching locations to his clients. I would not usually put the level of trust in anyone to arrange holidays for me that I have with Antonio but he has delivered every time and I can unreservedly recommend his services. Italy is a beautiful country with huge variety - if you describe what you like to Antonio and let him make suggestions then you will not be disappointed. Very definitely 5 stars from me. So - Antonio and team, please keep it up! Jonread more
    Amanda Chapman
    Amanda Chapman
    22:28 25 Aug 17
    Antonio delivered more than expected! Our family of four stayed at two... beautiful villa's on the Amalfi Coast. Both of the locations were top class. Antonio provided excellent service and was always available if we had questions about the details of our trip. He was easy to work with and we would recommend his services to others traveling to Italy.read more
    Susan Davidson
    Susan Davidson
    09:04 19 Jun 17
    This was our second holiday with ExpertoItaly, and it was just as good as the... first! Antonio provided us with fast, efficient and personal attention. His choice of hotels was first class. Real attention to detail means that you get a holiday that really suits your personal requirements. Brilliant!read more
    Andrew Rogers
    Andrew Rogers
    09:36 09 Jul 16
    We have just made an amazing journey by train, taxi, boat and bus through... France, a night in Paris, then a night on a mountain in Switzerland, train across the alps on the Bernina Express, 5 days on Lake Como and 6 days on Lake Maggiore. We stayed in the most glorious quality hotels. We made visits to local towns and attractions using buses and boats. Every connection on the journey was planned and executed wonderfully. This is 5 star planning, 5 star service, 5 star experience all personally organised by Antonio at ExpertoItaly. We must never forget the James Bond moment of being whisked across Como by Luca in his luxury Taxiboat from Varenna to the Hotel Filario in Lezzeno with Pavarotti as our musical accompaniment then met on the jetty by a lovely suited receptionist. A dream. Thanks Antonio. See views from our rooms Como then Maggiore.read more
    Next Reviews