Eat, Sleep, Repeat: A Food-Fuelled Guide To Naples, Italy

Discover a city bathed in deep gold and pastel pink hues, where refuelling pit stops bring untold joy, independent shops are plentiful and life is lived at a delicious pace under the shadow of Mount Vesuvius

Rich in culture, tradition, history and gastronomy, Naples is a city where you'll make countless thrilling discoveries, whether it's your first, second or third time in the dynamic Campanian capital.

With mornings typically bathed in deep gold and pastel pink hues, the sunlight kissing the delicate facades of historic buildings, life here is lived by the sea, under the shadow of Vesuvius. It might take a day or two to get used to the cacophony of mopeds and car horns, but it only takes a second to fall in love with the extraordinary landscapes that roll out towards the coast of Sorrento and the island of Capri.

Naples, italy
Naples, Italy

Start with a stroll on Spaccanapoli, the soul of Naples, which literally splits the city's historic core in two: a street rimmed with crumbling palazzos imbued with a decaying beauty. Nearby is Via San Gregorio Armeno, a narrow alley lined with artisan shops that sell handcrafted nativity figurines - the perfect festive gift. Then, there's the city beneath the city, a network of tunnels, chambers and catacombs sculpted by the Romans and Greeks around five millennia ago, some of which are open to visitors. But to truly uncover the beauty of the city, you'll need to venture out from the centre into neighbourhoods such as Rione Sanità, Vomero and Posillipo.

This last is perhaps one of the city's treasures - an expansive beach where locals lounge on deckchairs dosing up on vitamin D from the early hours of the morning. The district is also home to Palazzo Donn'Anna, a monumental 17th-century building with a baroque facade that sits on the water's edge. From here, on the terrace of Posillipo's Sant'Antonio church, you can catch the best sunset views in all of Naples.

Inevitably, a trip to Naples also involves delving into the gastronomic excellences on offer - from the flaky, lobster-tail-shaped sfogliatella riccia and rum-infused babà to the OG pizza, with its soft, fluffy crust and oozing mozzarella. Read on to discover some of our favourite places to eat, drink, shop and sleep in Italy's City of the Sun.

Naples addresses to have on your radar

Where to stay

Grand Hotel Parkers, Naples, Italy
Rinuccini Relais, Naples, Italy

Rinuccini Relais, left, and Grand Hotel Parker's

Grand Hotel Parker's

Open since the 19th century, Grand Hotel Parker's has in its day played home to such illustrious guests as Robert Louis Stevenson, Virginia Woolf and Oscar Wilde, all of whom were drawn by the magnificent views it offers of the coast of Sorrento. Today, the property belongs to the Avallone family, who lovingly restored the Grand Hotel following the devastating damage it suffered in the Second World War, preserving fabulous period design across the halls and in 67 rooms and suites. But it's the top two floors that truly take your breath away: savour a cocktail at sunset on the rooftop as the entire Gulf of Naples is flooded in pastel-coloured light. Afterwards, head down to the Restaurant George, with its recently acquired second Michelin star, for an alchemy of contemporary cuisine and timeless Neapolitan tradition by chef Domenico Candela.

Corso Vittorio Emanuele 135, 80121
+39 081 761 2474
grandhotelparkers.it

Rinuccini Relais

Rinuccini Relais offers a dazzling wake-up call, as you pull open the curtains and find yourself overlooking the vibrant Piazza Dante, named after the renowned Italian poet Dante Alighieri, and with the Vomero hills in the distance. This six-roomed B&B is situated within an elegant 18th-century palace once belonging to the Marquis Rinuccini of Florence. Today, the property blends heritage details with contemporary touches and pops of colour and, of course, triple-glazed windows to ensure a noise-free night's sleep.

Piazza Dante 22, 80135
+39 081 230 4255
rinuccinirelais.com

Atelier Inès

Located within the former residence and studio of Neapolitan artist Annibale Oste, boutique beauty Atelier Inès is located in the edgy Sanità district. It is Vincenzo, Annibale's son, who, together with his wife Inès, took on this project, creating a warmly inviting space reflective of the pair's artistic backgrounds. A living gallery of the Oste family, works of art from the 1960s are on display, alongside handmade sculptures, headboards, wardrobes and mirrors in each of the six suites. Unleash your creativity in Oste's former art studio, where one-to-one creative workshops span jewellery making to sculpting your own standout souvenir to take home. If you need further inspiration, Palazzo dello Spagnolo, one of the most beautiful examples of 18th-century baroque architecture, is just around the corner.

Via dei Cristallini 138, 80137
+39 349 443 3422
atelierinesgallery.com
Casa d’Anna ai Cristallini, Naples, Italy
SuperOtium, Naples, Italy

Casa d'Anna ai Cristallini, left, and SuperOtium | Photo credit: Pedicini

Casa d'Anna ai Cristallini

A 16th-century baroque maison reimagined as a charming, petite B&B, Casa d'Anna ai Cristallini is nestled along a narrow, bustling alleyway in Rione Sanità, a neighbourhood born as a burial ground in the Greek and Roman period and that is today becoming increasingly popular thanks to the numerous gems found here. Owner Alessandra Calise Martuscelli warmly welcomes guests; upon entry, you can't help but notice the grandeur of the living room on your left, a real "salotto" filled with books and precious antiques where you can enjoy a coffee to the sound of classical music. Four rooms are named after the neighbouring islands, and, while modestly furnished, each has its own personality. Walk up the spiral staircase to reach the tranquil rooftop to savour breakfast or spend the afternoon reading a book in the sunshine.

Via dei Cristallini 138, 80137
+39 081 446 611
casadanna.it

SuperOtium

A 19th-century apartment building houses artistic hub SuperOtium, a concept that blends art and design to highlight the city's cultural richness and innovative spirit. Founders Nicola Ciancio and Vincenzo Falcione went beyond the simple notion of hospitality and introduced a residency programme for creatives, as well as a series of talks and events designed to encourage engaging interactions between travellers and locals. The interiors, curated by Milan-based studio Hypereden, reflect SuperOtium's creative spirit and relationship with Naples: made-to-measure canopies cocoon the double beds, sporting colourful patterns inspired by Pompeian mosaics; there are high wooden ceilings; period majolica tile flooring reminiscent of traditional Napolitan apartments; and a palette reflective of the surrounds, big on greens, yellows and oranges. Afternoons are best spent cosied up on the sofa in the plant-filled living room, enjoying a good book.

Via Santa Teresa degli Scalzi 8, 80135
+39 081 544 2071
superotium.it

PrimoPianoPosillipo

Within the enchanting setting of the city's Posillipo neighbourhood, this serene hideaway comes with breathtaking views over Mount Vesuvius and the Gulf of Naples. Tastefully designed by Italian architect Giuliano dell'Uva, the elegant 19th-century building showcases a selection of prestigious designer furnishings from the 70s and 80s. The lounge is a perfect example of this style: chequerboard tiles pave the floor beneath the suave Edra Damier sofa in a mauve velvet and Pallucco floor lamp, a timeless icon conceived by Mariano Fortuny. Four double rooms provide all the expected comforts, but it's the Donn'Anna room that will steal your heart, with its soothing views of the splendid Tyrrhenian Sea.

Via Posillipo 299, 80123
+39 349 333 6396
primopianoposillipo.it

Where to eat - restaurants

Il Comandante, Naples. Italy

Il Comandante

Il Comandante

On the ninth floor of the Romeo Hotel, tables at Il Comandante come with sweeping views of Mount Vesuvius and the Gulf of Naples. Food-wise, you can expect a multi-sensory culinary experience curated by executive chef Salvatore Bianco, whose creativity and technical abilities have been rewarded with a Michelin star. Three tasting menus synthesise seasonal ingredients, tradition and a touch of experimentation. Accompany the culinary journey with one of the 1,500 carefully selected native and international wines.

Via Cristoforo Colombo 45, 80133
+39 081 017 5001
theromeocollection.com

Cicciotto dal 1942

Situated in one of Naples' most captivating locations, on the Marechiaro shore, Cicciotto dal 1942 is the place to savour fresh seafood while overlooking the Tyrrhenian Sea: on a clear evening, you might even catch a glimpse of Capri in the distance. The restaurant has been welcoming guests for four generations, dishing up sublime fish recipes from carpaccios to grilled catch of the day, handmade pasta and Neapolitan-style fried squid. For those who love raw fish, the mixed platter is a stellar signature.

Calata Ponticello a Marechiaro 32, 80123
+39 081 575 1165
trattoriadacicciotto.it

Naples, Italy
Mimi Alla Ferrovia, Naples, Ital

Naples, left, and Mimì alla Ferrovia

Mimì alla Ferrovia

In 1943, Ida and Emilio "Mimì" Giugliano opened this small trattoria in the heart of Naples' historic centre. Due to its favourable position and being deeply anchored in traditional "cucina casareccia", it quickly became a cornerstone of the city. For over 80 years now - and three generations down the line - the restaurant has remained family-run and faithful to tradition, albeit with a sprinkling of contemporary flair.

Via Alfonso D'Aragona 19-21, 80139
+39 081 553 8525
mimiallaferrovia.it

Trattoria da Nennella

A queue is pretty much guaranteed here because Trattoria da Nennella doesn't take bookings, but the wait is worth it if you want to experience "tarantella Napoletana", or chaos, with waiters singing and chanting. Representing ridiculously good value for money, the menu comprises a first course, main course and side of your choice. Options are limited but each dish on the menu is an expression of local culinary tradition, with the pasta with melted provolone cheese and pancetta one of the trattoria's most popular dishes.

Piazza Carità 22, 80134
+39 081 414 338
trattorianennella.it

Where to eat - pizza

Concettina ai Tre Santi, Naples, italy
Concettina ai Tre Santi, Naples, italy

Concettina ai Tre Santi

Concettina ai Tre Santi

If you don't leave the city weighing a few kilos more than you did when you arrived, then you haven't truly lived Naples. Concettina ai Tre Santi is a place where a "light lunch" is not an option - instead, a lengthy culinary journey awaits. Opened around 70 years ago by the Oliva family in the popular Sanità district, the pizzeria has maintained its legacy as one of the best in town. Highly recommended is the tasting menu curated by Ciro Oliva, which takes diners through a journey of the chef's life experiences as well as the history of Neapolitan cuisine. This one is for pizza purists.

Via Arena della Sanità 7 Bis, 80137
+39 081 290 037
pizzeriaoliva.it

Di Matteo

One of the best ways to embrace the food scene in Naples is through its street food. Pizza al portafoglio is a classic pizza (usually margherita) folded in four that you can take away and devour as you continue your explorations. Get yours from Di Matteo, which, literally on the entrance to its restaurant on Via dei Tribunali, has a tiny counter selling these perfectly round folded doughs to take away. There will most likely be a queue but it tends to move fast.

Via dei Tribunali 94, 80138
+39 081 455 262
anticapizzeriadimatteo.it
 L’Antica Friggitoria Masardona, Naples, Italy
L’Antica Friggitoria Masardona, Naples, Italy

L'Antica Friggitoria Masardona

Fried pizza is a Naples institution and the one from Masardona is up there with the best. It was Anna Manfredi, affectionately nicknamed "La Masardona", who began frying pizzas in the early 1950s on Sunday mornings outside the front door of her home. Today, it's Enzo (her grandson), Salvatore and Cristiano (her great grandsons) who manage the three outlets (two in Naples and one in Rome). Essentially, pizza fritta emerged as an economical food following the Second World War, enabling households to fill up on whatever was left in the fridge. Fast forward a few decades and it has become exemplary of Neapolitan cuisine, with the recipes used at Masardona having been handed down from generation to generation.

Piazza Vittoria 5, 80121 / Via Giulio Cesare Capaccio 27, 80142
+39 081 245 2243 / +39 081 281 057
facebook.com/lamasardona

Where to eat - sweets

Gran Caffè Gambrinus

Gran Caffè Gambrinus is one of very few remaining preserved historic caffès in Italy. It opened back in 1860 and, with its palatial interiors, attracted the Neapolitan and international intellectual elite as well as a handful of politicians and businessmen. It undeniably serves one of the best espressos in the city - best knocked back against the counter, before nibbling on a flaky, ricotta-filled sfogliatella riccia.

Via Chiaia 1, 80132
+39 081 417 582
grancaffegambrinus.com

La Sfogliatella Mary

Come to this small, modest counter located in one of the wings of Galleria Umberto I to find rows of sweet Neapolitan delicacies, from the two kinds of sfogliatelle (riccia and frolla) to large babà soaked in rum, pastiera Napoletana and zeppole di San Giuseppe (fried, round doughs filled with zesty cream and a sour cherry on top, traditionally served on Father's Day).

Via Toledo 66, 80134
+39 081 402 218

Naples, Italy

Poppella Pasticceria

A trip to the Sanità district for a soft, round fiocco di Neve, or "snowflake", is a must. This is the only place in the world to serve such exquisite, delicate little dough balls with a generous dusting of icing sugar on top. Order yours filled with Italian pastry cream, pistachio or chocolate.

Via Arena della Sanità 29, 80137 / Via Santa Brigida 69-70, 80132
+39 081 455 309 / +39 081 552 3538
pasticceriapoppella.com

Where to drink

ScottoJonno, Naples, Italy
L'Antiquario, Naples, Italy

ScottoJonno, left, and L'Antiquario | Photo credit: Letizia Cigliutti

L'Antiquario

L'Antiquario is a moody, speakeasy-inspired cocktail bar stirring up some of the best cocktails in the city, from the classics to contemporary pours served in the quirkiest glasses and tea cups. There's no need for a secret password to enter, but as you walk through the dark corridor, brace yourself for a journey back to the heart of the Prohibition Era. Reservations via the website are recommended.

Via Vannella Gaetani 2, 80121
+39 081 764 5390
lantiquarionapoli.superbexperience.com

ScottoJonno

This shiny new library and literary café recently opened in the Galleria Principe of Naples following two years of meticulous renovations. Interiors are packed with a treasure trove of art nouveau details, from original stuccos through to prestigious silks and liberty-style balustrades, all carefully matched with a curated selection of period furnishings. A multifunctional hub bringing together culture, entertainment, art and cuisine under one roof, the well-balanced cocktail list served up to live music is just one of many good reasons to visit.

Galleria Principe di Napoli XIV-XVII, 80135
+39 333 262 8454
scottojonno.com

Where to shop

Omega, Naples, Italy
Omega, Naples, Italy

Omega

Omega

In the heart of Naples' historic Sanità neighborhood, Omega is one of very few authentic glove factories still standing. Established in 1923 by Gennaro Squillace, the atelier is now led by fifth-generation glove maker Alberto, continuing a two-century tradition of crafting top-quality gloves. A visit feels like diving into the past: think vintage Singer sewing machines and industrious seamstresses galore, with 25 individuals working on each glove. A testament to the excellence of Neapolitan craftsmanship, Omega also produces for top global haute couture brands such as Rick Owens, Dior, Jean Paul Gaultier, LVMH and more.

Via Stella 12, 80137
+39 334 985 2000
omegasrl.com

Antica Manifattura Ceramica

The only original majolica production still alive in Naples, Antica Manifattura was born in the early 18th century and is currently led with dedication by sisters Imma and Simona Stingo, who proudly carry forward their family business. Initially focused on tiles and terracotta vases, the business has expanded to include artisanal objets d'art and furnishings in classical and contemporary motifs.

Via Brecce a Sant'Erasmo 111, 80146
+39 081 261 617
ceramicastingo.com

Mediterranea Ceramics

Mediterranea Ceramics was launched in 2019 in the heart of Naples (and of the pandemic), with a small workshop becoming home to Lorenzo Gargano's new project. With a background in the design industry, Gargano's linear, geometrical eye results in ceramics that really stand out from the Italian norm, merging tradition with an innovative, modern approach. The collection of colourful, refined tableware is a pleasure to browse.

Via Vincenzo Cuoco 21, 80121
+39 351 046 1090
mediterraneaceramics.com
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