Hotel Rosa Alpina, established in 1850, is a beautiful Relais & Chateaux property in the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Dolomites, set in the tiny village of San Cassiano in Alta Badia. The hotel’s location is spectacular and as you approach you see extraordinary rock formations all around, with the highest peak, Marmolada Mountain, standing at 3,334m above sea level. The area feels very distinctive from other Alpine hot-spots - as well as Italian, the locals speak Ladino, a language derived from Latin, and The Rosa Alpina has been in the same family, the Pizzinini’s, for over 70 years.
The Rosa Alpina is a luxurious five-star hotel, but if you’re looking for a K2 in Courchevel experience, forget it. That’s not what this hotel is about. It’s a charming South Tyrolean property, very Alpine in feel, brilliant for couples as well as families with small children and teenagers. Its appeal is in its cosy atmosphere, great food, incredible service and wonderful staff. With 52 rooms and suites, including a penthouse, the hotel feels very exclusive and guests are looked after fabulously. There’s also a private residence, Chalet Zeno, a contemporary mountain-style accommodation which sleeps up to eight guests, with a large living area, fire place, private garden and outdoor Finnish Sauna and Jacuzzi. If you’re travelling with the whole family or a group of friends, this is a great option for some extra privacy.
Skiing in winter is the hotel’s main attraction. The area to ski is extensive, good for both beginners and advanced skiers with access to the circular ski route of the Sella Ronda, which take you through Val Gardena, leading around the mighty Sella massif and offering 26km of downhill trails in a single day. There is as much to do here in the summer as there is in winter - you can mountain bike the Sella Ronda route, as well as paraglide, ride, raft, hike with experienced mountain guides and play golf at a course 1,700m above sea level. And for something a little more relaxing, Hatha Yoga and Pilates are offered in-house, available at all times.
The Dolomites lend themselves perfectly to outdoor adventures, but back at the hotel there are plenty of spoiling treats to look forward to after you’ve embraced the great outdoors. The hotel features a beautiful adult only spa with bio and Finnish sauna and Hammam, child friendly pool, hot tub and play area, well equipped Techno gym, snooker room, quiet library for some down time and its own private cinema for guests to watch movies of their choice. As a Relais & Chateaux hotel, dining is an important part of the Rosa Alpina experience, with four restaurants to choose from. Restaurant Limonaia is perfect for family dining where you’ll find the nicest buffet breakfasts are served in the mornings. The Fondue Stube, serving meat, cheese and oh yes, chocolate fondues, is the ultimate indulgence after a day on the slopes. Restaurant, Wine Bar & Grill offers the best pizzas and pasta dishes, and then the cherry on the cake is Restaurant St. Hubertus, the superb Michelin starred experience under Chef Norbert Niederkofler. All I can say is I have never tasted food quite like it - it was utterly delicious, a fusion of the most divine flavours and superb signature dishes – perfect for a special occasion. Before returning home, be sure to stop by the little hotel shop, Novum, which has some delightful locally made gifts including beautiful Venetian tumblers.
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Every time I explore a new destination, whether it’s on an adventure holiday in Peru or a luxury beach escape in the Indian Ocean, I return home full of excitement to share the amazing sights I have seen. Through my own experiences I have developed a love of helping others experience the great wonders of the world; truly getting under the skin of the extraordinary destinations that are at your fingertips. Getting the details right, from which hotel is perfectly located for exploring away from the crowds, to which local guide is most knowledgeable on history or culture or art, is of paramount importance to me. I am constantly seeking out new and exciting experiences and exploring off the beaten track to ensure my clients are receiving the best and most honest first-hand advice.
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