Lipari, Salina, Vulcano, Alicudi, Filicudi, Panarea, Stromboli. In a word: Aeolian Islands. This splendid volcanic archipelago, at north of Strait of Messina, Sicily owes its name to the god of wind, Aeolus, who has always reigned supreme here, along with Vulcan, the god of fire. These elements have shaped the beauty – sometimes harsh, sometimes sweet – of these islands, loved by great directors and actors, such as Roberto Rossellini, Anna Magnani and frequented by the international jet-set.
VIPs go wild in Panarea, amidst the glow of the summer sky and the thunder of glamorous nightclubs. On Vulcano, however, tourists flock around the puddle of thermal mud, crumble on excursions to the crater and then cool off with the baths in the bay of black sand of the west. In the capital – and the main island by size – Lipari, the millionaire villas rest in the green, while in front of the white pumice beaches moor the boats of Sting, Giorgio Armani and the large cruise ships. The tour of this island is unmissable, especially at sunset, when the cliffs are surrounded by the last rays of the sun.
In Stromboli you can breathe the calm tranquility of the views and the seabed, and look upwards hoping that Iddu, as the inhabitants call the volcano still active, doesn’t get too angry. In the small Filicudi, intellectuals and politicians get confused with the residents, waiting for a visit to the Grotta del Bue Marino, while in Salina the woods of Mediterranean flora, nowhere to be found, cover the two extinct volcanoes that earned the name of Didyme, that is “Gemini”. In the wild and remote Alicudi, finally the peace of silence triumphs, broken only by the lapping of the waves.
Getting married in this terrestrial paradise means experiencing a glam but wild experience, in close contact with nature and the best of what Sicily has to offer: great food, splendid sea and unique sunsets, fresh cocktails and relaxation, combined with turns by boat between sunny coves or unique excursions until you look into the crater of one of the few Volcanoes still active in the world.
As usual, I personally selected the best venues in the Aeolian Islands, which combine a bespoke high end service with typical island hospitality.
1. QUARTARA BOUTIQUE HOTEL – Panarea
Quartara is a Boutique Hotel in the Aeolian Islands, the first 4-star hotel in Panarea. Located in the heart of the island, a few hundred meters from the port, the Hotel is in a panoramic position and not far from the center of Panarea. A warm and family atmosphere will welcome you upon your arrival at the Hotel, in a setting characterized by a terrace overlooking the sea and the stacks, the soft colors typical of the Aeolian style, the smells of the Mediterranean and the green of the surrounding Nature.
Quartara Hotel in Panarea is also a haven of well-being and an unforgettable gastronomic experience, thanks to the exclusive wellness area and the typical dishes of the Sicilian tradition, cooked by Daniela Cappelli, chef of the Broccia restaurant.
Perfect for intimate couples or weddings, you can choose to celebrate your symbolic ceremony on the beach or on the private terrace overlooking the Aeolian Islands of your suite. Dinner, relaxed and tailored to your wishes, can be an informal cocktail on the terrace or a typical Sicilian dinner in their small and exclusive restaurant.
2. THERASIA RESORT – Vulcano
The sunset that ignites the air, the Eolian islands with their blurred contours standing out on the horizon and an island, Vulcano, with its wild charm. The Therasia Resort Sea & Spa, set on the promontory of Vulcanello, dominates this breathtaking panorama.
An exclusive retreat with soft, Mediterranean lines that blend with the harmonious Aeolian architecture formed by typical pulere, cannizzi and arches facing the sea. The rooms of the elegant and romantic Therasia, the only 5-star hotel in the Aeolian archipelago, recall the wild elements of this land thanks to the wise use of the materials of the area: from lava stone to terracotta, passing from cedar to olive wood. The thousand shades of soft colors relax the spirit, which will find its natural balance in the full silence of this oasis.
At Therasia Hotel, we could create a welcome bio aperitif with a stunning view or a farewell pic-nic, while setting up the ceremony just in front of the unique sea strait between Vulcano island and Lipari. The starred restaurant Il Cappero can host a gourmet dinner with a show cooking that every guest will remember forever. During your uber relaxed time in Vulcano, you could enjoy yoga lessons in the morning or cooking classes to stay deeply in touch with the best of Sicilian culture.
3. PRINCIPE DI SALINA – Salina
The breathtaking views of Stromboli, Panarea and the limitless Aeolian Sea set the tone for your stay in this oasis of refinement in a rugged natural setting.
Each of the 12 rooms is elegantly appointed and features a private terrace overlooking the picturesque landscape and sea.
Luxe amenities, boutique hospitality and classic Sicilian touches welcome you, and the infinity pool and geothermal spa tub transport you to pure bliss.
Principe di Salina is the ideal setting for your wedding and celebrations, with manicured grounds including an indoor living area with computer, libraries and fireplace, extra spacious terraces and solarium.
Nestled among the vineyards of Malvasìa (local sweet vine), this charming boutique hotel was designed in the traditional Aeolian style influenced by Sicily invasions during history.
Relax and take in exquisite sea views from the infinity pool and geothermal spa tub nestled in the lush vegetation or the Aeolian bar.
The spa tub is fed by a geothermal aquifer 80 mt. deep. The temperature reaches a soothing 40° C, able to melt the cares of the world away.
4. LISCA BIANCA HOTEL – Panarea
Lisca Bianca with its central position in front of the touristic harbor has breathtaking views of the sea and the other little islands that are located in front of Panarea. The hotel is divided in small buildings surrounded by wonderful gardens with local flowers and plants. Each sea view room has its own terrace with astonishing views of the sea and guests can lounge in the bar on the main terrace of the hotel from sunset till late night.
Free WiFi is offered on the main terrace and lobby of the hotel. From here it’s possible to have boat trips around the islands to visit its small bays and to continue onto Stromboli island to be able to see the famous “sciara di fuoco” (an active volcano that lights up the sky with fireworks sparks of blazing orange lava).
What about a welcome aperitif on a terrace overlooking the Panarea harbor before enjoying a Sicilian dinner with the sea breeze refreshing you?
5. CAPOFARO RESORT – Salina
Capofaro was born from the love for the vineyard and the sea of the Tasca d’Almerita family, important wine producers from generations. A spectacular estate on the island of Salina designed for friends, guests and all travelers with taste, in the name of the best Mediterranean hospitality. Capofaro is the maximum expression of Salina, the most authentic of the Aeolian Islands: an inn surrounded by wine rows overlooking the sea, where Malvasia, a typical island wine, is produced.
Aeolian Islands are the perfect place to enjoy warm Sicilian hospitality, surrounded from wild Nature while being pampered by high end services and a human warmth that only people from the South can treat.