Le Grotte della Civita is a truly breathtaking hotel, set in Unesco-listed Matera Sassi. It overlooks the deep Gravina gorge next to the town which offers stunning views all year round. The rooms feature ancient stone floors and walls and is built out of the subterranean caves that have existed in Matera for thousands of years
The historic Apennine village, Matera can be found in the south of Italy and is world famous because of its Sassi quarters, a stunning and well-preserved example of a village where hundreds of caves were turned into dwellings, churches and palaces.
One of these such dwellings is the Le Grotte della Civita. The hotel itself consists of 18 uniquely designed rooms in the subterranean caves under the town, all renovated over 10 years with an obsessive attention to detail and utter respect for the past. An ancient church, the “Cripta della Civita”, is now used as the hotel's common area, all renovated to retain its original features.
Simple wooden furniture, carved crosses and cosy nooks are the only visible decoration; but closer examination reveals concealed spotlights in the walls, underfloor heating beneath the time-worn stones and, in many rooms, an oversized egg-shaped Starck bathtub in the depths.
All rooms are air-conditioned and uniquely decorated. The bed linen is made from antique cloth. Albergo Sextantio Le Grotte Della Civita welcomes guests with fresh fruit and cool water, served in a candle-lit dining area. Wi-Fi is free throughout the property.
Be aware that it can be pretty hard to find the hotel, and you’ll have to park on the edge of town (though you can drop off luggage first). Expect to pay around 15-20 Euro per day for parking.
The hotel is set in the middle of the old quarter of Matera which is considered to be one of the longest continuously inhabited human settlement in the world. Around 7000 thousand years ago humans moved in the natural limestone caves that exist and over time a town grew up layer, by layer on top. The town retains a very old feel to it and it almost seems as though you've been transported back to the holy land. Indeed the old town of Matera, the Sassi, has often been used as a stand-in for Jerusalem in many films and TV shows.
The nearest airport to Matera is Bari Airport which is about 8km outside of the city of Bari. The quickest way to get from Bari to Matera is to drive, which will take just under an hour. If you don't have a car you can also catch a train from the center of Bari to Matera in about 1 hour and 30 mins. This train runs hourly and tickets can be bought from the station in Bari.
Address: Via Civita 28, 75100 Matera, ItalyView larger map