Need To Know
192: 63 bedrooms (including seven suites) in La Corte, the fort-like main building; 92 bedrooms in the Borgo, and 28 villas.
12 noon, but flexible, subject to availability. Earliest check-in, 3pm. (Guests can use the pool and beach before check-in, though.)
Double rooms from £166.17 (€192), including tax at 10 per cent. Please note the hotel charges an additional local city tax of €5.00 per person per night on check-out.
Breakfast (a generous buffet) is included. For guests staying in the Villa Magnifica, airport transfers by minivan from Bari or Brindisi, a personal massaie (butler and chef), bike hire, babysitting, a round of golf, laundry, customised bath experience, gifts on arrival and departure, and a special gift for kids. Children are very welcome: under-3s can sleep in cots for free; extra beds can be added for pre-teens (€50 a night). Half-board meals are €25 a child, each night.
The hotel is surrounded by San Domenico Golf – an 18-hole course by the Adriatic sea. Booked a villa? Request the services of a butler, PA, nanny or private chef. Bring trainers and your gym kit for morning jogs with the sociable GM. The hotel welcomes four-legged friends, but they must be small, and they’re not allowed in any of the common areas. They’re only allowed in certain room types: Borgo (€80 a stay), Casettas (€150 a stay) and Villas (€250 a stay). This charge includes a bed; a toy; absorbent pads (for puppies prone to accidents); bowls for food and water; and a biscuit once a day, during turndown service.
At the hotel
Golf course, two beaches, two beach clubs, beach shuttle, 40-acre grounds, spa, gym, yoga studio, restaurants, bars, kids club, shop, hairdressers, bike hire (from €16 a day), free WiFi throughout.
In your room
LCD TV with a Bluetooth connection and on-demand movies, minibar, hair straighteners, bathrobes, slippers, L'Amande bath products. Villas have an iPod dock too.
Our favourite rooms
Get a room in the Borgo – they have more space and are closer to the family pool. Casetta Bella rooms in the Borgo are split across two levels: a downstairs living room with a little cooking corner (equipped with a kettle and microwave) and space for an extra bed; an upstairs bedroom with a stone bathroom (with a bath tub and shower) and a balcony. These rooms also have a little patio garden with a table and chairs. If your budget can stretch, book a three-bedroom villa: highlights include the cosy living room with sofas and a fireplace, elegant dining room, a private pool and landscaped garden. The villas also have a kitchen with a dishwasher, washing machine and dryer.
The family pool in the Borgo is heated in the cooler months (from mid-September until mid-June) and is supervised by lifeguards. For teens and adults, there are also two pools by La Corte, as well as a heated pool inside the main building (children must be supervised here, and can only use the pool between 10am and 12 noon, and 5pm–7pm). Alternatively, pack towels and a picnic and head for La Fonte, the sandy beach, open between June and September. Children can splash around with snorkels and flippers or hop on pedalos and banana boats (with staff supervision). There’s also a rocky beach, Cala Masciola, that’s great for surfing – not so great for toddlers. This beach is open between June and September (depending on the weather). A shuttle service operates between both beaches (shuttles leave every 15 minutes for La Fonte; every 20 minutes for Casa Masciola).
Save time for a trip to the incredible spa, set across two floors. Treatments are inspired by local traditions: a Roman bath ritual with an Apulian pink-salt scrub or Tarantism (an ancient Apulian therapeutic ritual for women involving music), for example. Stone slabs hang on the walls, giant pestles and mortars sit on the floor and staff sport relaxed Grecian attire. Under-12s are not allowed.
The kids club needs to be booked a week in advance. Organise babysitting 48 hours in advance.
Absolutely – the hotel welcomes small dogs, for an extra charge (for more details, see below).