There’s an especially cool Four Seasons hotel opening this summer, which I think is worth covering.
San Domenico Palace becomes Four Seasons
The Four Seasons Sicily will be opening as of July 1, 2021. This hotel will officially be known as San Domenico Palace, a Four Seasons Hotel, and it’s located in Taormina, Sicily. This is roughly a one hour drive from Catania Airport (CTA), and a roughly three hour drive from Palermo Airport (PMO).
The Four Seasons is located just off Taoramina’s main street, the Corso Umberto, so it’s an easy walk to the shops and restaurants in the old town.
As the name suggests, the Four Seasons is in the space of the former San Domenico Palace, which first opened in 1896. As you’d expect, an extensive renovation is currently in progress, so the hotel should be pretty spectacular when it opens in a few months.
San Domenico Palace (Four Seasons) exterior
San Domenico Palace is built on the site of a 14th century Dominican convent on the eastern shores of Sicily, overlooking the Bay of Taormina and the Ionian Sea. The hotel features views of Mount Etna, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
San Domenico Palace (Four Seasons) view
San Domenico Palace (Four Seasons) view
San Domenico Palace (Four Seasons) area
The Four Seasons features 111 rooms and suites, some with private terraces, and even plunge pools. The hotel also boasts a spa, gym, an infinity pool terrace, a beach club, lush gardens, and several restaurants and bars.
This will Four Seasons’ third property in Italy, after the properties in Florence and Milan. On top of that, a new Four Seasons has been announced for Puglia, though that’s still a few years down the road.
Four Seasons Sicily room types
The Four Seasons Sicily has 111 accommodations, including 69 rooms, 31 suites, and 11 specialty suites.
To give you a sense of what to expect, here are the categories of guest rooms at San Domenico Palace:
- The Superior Room is 301-312 square feet, and has town or cloister views
- The Deluxe Room is 323-484 square feet, and has town or garden views
- The Sea-View Deluxe Room is 290-388 square feet, and has sea views
- The Sea-View Premium Room is 323-420 square feet, and has sea views
- The Sea-View Premium Room with Terrace is 334-366 square feet, and has sea views
San Domenico Palace (Four Seasons) room with balcony
Here are the categories of suites at San Domenico Palace:
- The Sea-View Junior Suite is 388-549 square feet, and has sea views
- The Sea-View Junior Suite with Plunge Pool is 441-517 square feet, and has sea views
- The Sea-View Executive Suite is 484-624 square feet, and has sea views
- The Sea-View Executive Suite with Plunge Pool is 505-689 square feet, and has sea views
San Domenico Palace (Four Seasons) room
Here are the categories of specialty suites at San Domenico Palace:
- The Etna Suite is 872-882 square feet, and has Mount Etna views
- The Princess Cecile Suite is 969 square feet, and has sea, town, and garden views
- The Teatro Suite is 689-743 square feet, and has Greek theater and sea views
- The San Domenico Suite is 947 square feet, and has sea views
- The Royal Suite is 1,507 square feet, and has Greek theater and sea views
San Domenico Palace (Four Seasons) room with bathtub
Booking the Four Seasons Sicily
It looks like the Four Seasons is currently accepting reservations July 1 through December 1, 2021. I’m guessing the hotel plans to be seasonal, though it’s at least a longer season than you’ll find in much of the rest of Europe.
It looks like rates during peak season start somewhere around 800EUR per night, while in November they start at under 400EUR per night. Obviously this hotel is pricey, but that’s not surprising given the Four Seasons name, the extensive renovation, and the lack of other luxury properties in Sicily.
If you’re going to book this hotel (or any Four Seasons), you absolutely should book through a travel advisor who is affiliated with Four Seasons Preferred Partner. This is a program allowing select travel advisors to add value for your stays without it costing you anything extra. Perks include things like complimentary breakfast, a hotel credit, an upgrade subject to availability.
Best of all, Four Seasons Preferred Partner can generally be combined with any rates you’ll find directly with Four Seasons. Ford is always happy to help with Four Seasons requests, and can be reached at [email protected]
This seems like a cool addition
I had the chance to visit Sicily several years ago, as Tiffany was living there at the time. I absolutely loved it — it’s so different than most other parts of Italy, and it’s charmingly run down. The food is awesome, the people are friendly (while still mocking you to your face if you order a cappuccino at the wrong time of day, natch), and the landscape is incredible.
Personally I think it’s cool to see a global luxury hotel group manage a property in Sicily (though there is also the Belmond Grand Hotel Timeo, which is well regarded). In particular, I appreciate that Four Seasons is tastefully restoring an existing historic property, rather than just building some cookie-cutter modern hotel that could be anywhere.
Of course it won’t come without controversy — many will argue it takes away from the charm, that this is just leading to a price hike at this hotel, etc. And that’s all fair enough. To me the two aren’t mutually exclusive.
In July 2021 Four Seasons will be opening its first property in Sicily, with the opening of a renovated San Domenico Palace. I appreciate how tastefully Four Seasons is renovating this property, as the hotel should still have a good sense of place.
For those who may have avoided Sicily in the past due to lack of luxury hotels, think again…
What do you make of the new Four Seasons Taormina?