Clinging to the base of the cliffs in Positano, Covo Dei Saraceni is the hotel you spot upon arriving in a new place and keep your fingers crossed that it's the one you've booked into. One of just three hotels in town to have a swimming pool - an impressive rooftop affair with a separate plunge pool - the prime beachfront location means the warm waters of the Med are also just a stone's throw away if you prefer. With spacious balconies jutting out seawards and pastel-coloured houses ascending up the rock face behind, the hotel screams all things Amalfi both inside and out. Traditional Italian interiors including marble floors, pretty chandeliers and antique furniture are brightened by white walls and Tiffany-blue hues. This is the place to live out your Talented Mr Ripley fantasies - though hopefully with a less gruesome end.
Sophisticated rooms channel the Italian Riviera with tiled flooring, mahogany chests, gilt headboards and insignia-stamped bed linen. Bathrooms are somewhat reminiscent of your grandparents' house thanks to matching turquoise loos and sinks - but they're fully equipped with the mod cons and it only adds to charm.
What's for breakfast?
Head to the sunny conservatory for a generous buffet which showcases local Italian produce such as mozzarella, Parma ham and custard doughnuts, alongside your usual eggs, fruit and cereal. Even the cooked tomatoes here are delicious - sweet, blood-red and gloriously melty.
How about lunch and dinner?
A poolside menu offers an array of pasta, pizza and salad, while the brasserie on the beach in front welcomes non-staying guests with similar fare. Come dinner, admire the twinkling lights and buzzy vibes of Positano from the rooftop over a changing menu featuring plenty of seafood.
Is there a bar?
The spacious ground-floor bar beckons with plump, white-leather sofas beside large windows overlooking the sea. The rooftop offering has an extensive drinks menu and attentive staff - a beer will set you back €7.
Rooftop pool, two bars, a brasserie and restaurant, free wifi. The hotel can also arrange various guided excursions including walking, scuba diving, horse riding, boat trips and tennis.
Things I should know
It's a bit tricky getting into Positano as the road is steep, narrow and winding with cars only allowed up to a point. If you're driving, call ahead and ask the hotel for directions to the car park further up the hill - they'll zip up in a golf buggy to help with bags (well worth the €10).
Within a short walk I can find…
The ferry point with boats taking you along the coast is just
outside, along with many (pretty touristy) shops and restaurants.
Head up the hill in the morning to pick up supplies from Latteria -
think octopus salad, chargrilled aubergine, creamy burrata and a
cold bottle of white - then head to the beach for a picnic.
Covo dei Saraceni is a
member of the Preferred Hotels & Resorts LVX