Daniel Craig’s Luxury Hotel
THE PALAZZO GATTINI LUXURY HOTEL, MATERA, ITALY
The hotel where Daniel Craig stayed whilst filming the latest James Bond film ‘No Time To Die’.
The Palazzo Gattini lies in Matera’s most exclusive area, at the top of the ancient city and flanking the cathedral. From its roof terrace you have a bird’s-eye panorama over the very beautiful ‘Sassi’ – the ageless caves and caverns inhabited since the Stone Age. Staying here may lack the distinctive atmosphere of the Sassi, but it has the advantage of being accessible by car and is well placed for all the sights. You can almost touch the Duomo, a handsome 13th-century structure with a lavish Baroque interior. Nearby are Casa Noha, where an audio-visual experience relates the fascinating and often harrowing history of the city, and MUSMA, an impressive labyrinthine cave-museum of contemporary sculpture. Bari international airport is just 65km (40 miles) away. Some travellers prefer to fly to Brindisi.
The 17th-century residence of the Gattini Counts is effortlessly elegant, all vaulted and arched ceilings, golden limestone walls, and high balconied windows. The interiors are designed in a contemporary-Classic style, bathed in soft lighting. With its underground Spa, well-dressed piano, and roof-garden with soaring views, the palazzo is just simply a lovely place to spend your time relaxing.
You can drink in Matera’s spectacular panorama from the roof-terrace bar. Or head down to the atmospheric spaces of the former cisterns and underground caves where the Spa evokes ancient Roman baths with its steam room, heated pool complete with waterfall and jet massages, and zero gravity ‘floating pool’. If you book a Suite, an hour’s sybaritic wallowing is included in the room price. Massages and beauty treatments are available at an extra cost. Staff can organise personalised tours and excursions within Matera and beyond. Thrill seekers might enjoy the so-called ‘Angel Flight’ – a zip-line that flies you across the spear-headed mountains known as the Lucanian Dolomites, which is about an hour away.
There’s a discreet elegance to this historic palazzo turned five-star hotel. All 20 rooms are decked with a discerning mix of antiques and art. From its subterranean spa to its rooftop bar, what’s not to like?
Some of the 20 rooms have vaulted ceilings hewn in Matera’s characteristic blond limestone, whilst others are frescoed and balconied. All have billowing silk curtains, sleek ebony and white furnishings, arty antiques, and lashings of Italian style. Bathrooms are designed in the local, sandy-coloured ‘mazzaro’ stone. Suite 201 has a capacious anteroom housing a Roman-style mosaic bath. To make a real splash, choose Suite 210, graced with its own private, rooftop swimming pool. Breakfast and minibar with soft drinks are included. Free Wi-Fi.
The hotel’s stone-vaulted, chandeliered restaurant – Le Bubbole – offers classic regional dishes, charming service and reasonable prices, given the quality. The array of local specialities (tartlets, mousses and compotes of seasonal vegetables, sausages and wild boar) makes a generous and tasty appetiser. For a main course, lamb from the Lucanian Dolomites topped with aromatic fennel is a real showstopper. There are also gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan meals, as well as a menu for children. Breakfast, served in the underground wine cellars, features a sweet and savoury buffet, with a range of local cured meats and cheeses lending a distinctive Materan twang.
‘No Time to Die’ features Daniel Craig in his final outing as James Bond.
Filming in Southern Italy took place in August and September 2019, which involved a classic chase sequence involving an Aston Martin DB5 through the streets of Matera. Daniel Craig and Lea Seydoux also filmed scenes in Maratea and Gravina. Additional scenes were shot in Sapri.
‘No Time To Die’ will be released in cinemas in the UK on 3rd April 2020.
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