If you had to sum up Sicily in just a few words, it’s an island of extremes. Rocky volcanic coastlines give way to white sandy beaches. Crumbling architectural treasures of the ancient world sit next to some of the most theatrical and perfectly preserved paintings of the Baroque. Menus feature hearty pasta dishes next to the freshest raw seafood, while the grandest of five-star luxury accommodations are found alongside meticulously designed boutique hotels and charming farm stays. It’s a cliche, but in Sicily, there’s truly something for everyone.
There’s also never been a better time to visit Sicily than now, with two new five-star hotel openings this summer that promise the utmost comfort in the heart of two of its most beloved cities. So here, find Vogue’s pick of the best places to stay—and of course, the best things to see, do, and eat—on the island that continues to serve at the crossroads of the Mediterranean.
A new guard of luxury hotels
The highest concentration of five-star hotels in Sicily has historically been found within the town of Taormina, famed for its idyllic cobblestoned streets, pink bougainvillea bursting from balconies, and the ancient Greek amphitheater which plays host to an eclectic lineup of musicians for outdoor concerts under the stars every summer. And last year, a new (or at least, meticulously refurbished) hotel arrived in town, San Domenico Palace—and drew headlines even more recently as the setting of the second season of The White Lotus. While the historic building—originally a monastery, still visible through the original frescos preserved above rooms which have now been converted into lavish suites—has been a hotel since 1986, it reopened in 2021 as the Four Seasons’ new southern Italian jewel. With spectacular views across the bay and over to Mount Etna (best enjoyed by the infinity pool, Aperol spritz in hand), three restaurants, and a can’t-be-beat proximity to Taormina’s most popular shopping street, Corso Umberto, it blends Sicilian charm with the utmost luxury.