by Shannon Antony
I awoke to the sounds of gently crashing waves lapping onto the pebbled beach below. When I looked out the window, I saw cliffs that reached the skies, and the salty sea breeze of the warm Mediterranean caressed my face like an Italian lover.
“Buongiorno!” Maurizio d’Agostino, the owner, sauntered happily onto the balcony, asking in his musical Italian accent if I had slept well and if the beautiful views of the Amalfi Coast agreed with me. I couldn’t agree more.
On the main veranda, the warm morning air blew in from the sea through three arched windows, stirring the scents of breakfast throughout the small hotel. Aromas of buttery croissants, dark coffee, fresh fruits and sweet homemade cake wafted through the air.
“This is beautiful, no?” Again I heard Maurizio’s lilting accent as I stood entranced by the view. This tiny hidden treasure, La Ninfa Hotel, is carved into the rocky cliffs of the Amalfi Coast and is nestled in seclusion. Just 90 minutes from the chaos of Naples, romance and tranquility reign supreme here.
Maurizio continued. “My family wanted to share with the world our fortune of this special location, and these beautiful views above the ancient mermaid’s sea.”
La Ninfa, “the mermaid” in Italian, is in honor of Hercules’ mermaid lover, “Amalfi.” Dying young, Hercules buried her in the most beautiful place in the world: the Amalfi Coast. Maurizio winks. With a sparkle in his eyes, he added, “It is a romantic story for a truly romantic hotel.”
Ah, Italian romance… the words danced in my mind. Just 2 kilometers down the coast was Amalfi, the ancient city of cobblestone paths, secret labyrinth alleyways, Limoncello shops and romantic candlelit restaurants, where lovers sit sipping wine and stealing kisses.
Directly below, the pristine waters of a secluded beach beckoned. Here, Italian locals and private guests can enjoy swimming, snorkeling, canoeing and windsurfing. There are even fishing classes with a real Italian pescatore, who teaches the old methods of fishing the seas of the Mediterranean.
I found that La Ninfa, with its privileged position, intimate feel, five star views and three star price, offered what few hotels could. With just 8 rooms, the elegant styles of terracotta and blue majolica tiles breathed an ambiance of fresh, open air tranquillity.
Flipping through the guest book, all international scribbles were unanimous: The hotel was a hideaway enjoyed by romantics. And I was the newest among the bewitched.
I leaned back on the terrace, as a cherry pink sun began to set over the soaring mountains. It reflected off the shimmering waters and faded into the endless sea. Yet I knew that unlike the sunset, my memories of this dreamy little paradise would never fade.
To use this article in your publication, click here.