La Posta Vecchia Is Italy’s Hidden Gem Hotel on the Tyrrhenian Sea

The beauty of La Posta Vecchia is that it’s not just a hotel. It’s a lifestyle, and one so quintessentially mind-boggling Italian its become an instant (and already legendary) hit with the European glitterati. Its appeal is all thanks to Marie-Louise Scio, the ultra-flashy Italian hotel magnate and businesswoman who once used to call this former Renaissance villa home. Her baby, the Pellicano Hotels brand—including Hotel Il Pellicano in Tuscany and The Mezzatorre in Ischia—has successfully achieved what few other Italian hoteliers have in their lifetime: designer sex appeal. Issimo, the group’s fashion-forward lifestyle brand, has spawned everything from exclusive collaborations (Monopoly included) to one-off designer-led collections. Pair this with three exceptional hotels, and what do you have? An empire of loyal devotees desperate to be part of what I affectionally call the “Pelli Pelli club.” 

But don’t just take my word for it. As Marie-Louise puts it to Hotels Above Par, “La Posta Vecchia is a Renaissance masterpiece and provides a remarkable opportunity to step back in time and witness the legacy of ancient civilizations, a testament to the rich history that lies beneath the surface of this extraordinary hotel…  it has a naughty vibe reminiscent of the extravagant parties once thrown by Roman Emperors in the same space.”

Perhaps the grandest of all the properties in Scio’s growing portfolio, La Posta Vecchia and its neighbouring castle once used to belong to millionaire and industrialist Jean Paul Getty. Relics of his tenure are still very much part of the La Posta Vecchia experience. When Getty renovated the place back in the 1960s, he stumbled on several ruins and artifacts from the ancient Roman city of Alsium, a metropolis that dates all the way back to the second century. The best part? Everything from the digs, including colourful mosaics, African and Greek marbles, and an array of plates, and amphorae, are now housed in a private museum in the cellar that guests can visit at their leisure when they stay. 

The perks of staying here get even better. As soon as you whizz through the gates into the estate, the vibe is rarefied and exclusive. The hotel, hidden away in the port seaside town of Ladispoli 45 minutes outside of Rome, is where the Romans and the Italian elite (and a handful of other Europeans and Americans) have been partying for decades. Celebrities also adore it. La Dolce Vita-era stars from Sophia Loren to Jackie Kennedy loved it, alongside more recent luminaries like fashion designer Harris Reed. 

Post a recent makeover that saw the Renaissance façade get a fresh lick of dusty pink paint, the villa still maintains and oozes its long history and distinguished character. The best way to describe it is a total mood. Light bounces off the walls in a dance of semi-luminous halos come sunset (especially in the gorgeous indoor pool), and easy-breezy curtains flutter aimlessly onto the hotel’s terrace overlooking the glittering Tyrrhenian Sea. Having a fashion-conscious owner also means that the attention to detail is unparalleled. Quite literally, every stateroom is filled with an astounding collection of art from the Renaissance onwards, curated by art historian Federico Zeri. Think ceiling-hung tapestries, mahogany tables piled high with coffee table books, ornate globes, and slouchy couches, all accentuated by the fine smell of sweet, sweet antiquity. In a nutshell, La Posta Vecchia is a vision of Italianate pagan Rome in all its titillatingly fabulous glory. And we love it. 

The 20 suites are equally fantastical. All come with their unique perks and character. Virtually all of them are filled with antiques and art, along with antiquarian books and period totems in the form of exquisitely carved furniture. Chandeliers, precious marble, original fireplaces, four-poster beds, and lush, elaborate textiles are also part of the deal here. Suite to know? The Castello Suite. You’ll feel like a monarch, especially with the view of the Castello in the background. 

Part of the 2023 relaunch also saw an entirely new gastronomic chapter for La Posta Vecchia. Chef Antonio Magliulo curates a menu inspired by ancient Roman and Lazio cuisine. The highlights include Roman-style dumplings, local and grilled asparagus, and fish plucked straight from the ocean. It’s all served on the terrace atop Ginori plates—exceptional views of the coast included. Breakfast is served here, too. Expect the usual suspects from fresh cheeses to eggs made any style and some rather incredible cappuccinos. 

Summed up, La Posta Vecchia is all about embracing the perks of the good life: lazing on the sundecks, exceptional food, and the beautiful simplicity of switching off with nothing about the sound of the sea and the hum of the sun in the background.

Top Takeaways

Location: Ladispoli, Italy. Trains to and from Rome leave roughly every hour. 

Rating: Five-star

The vibe: Grand villa living that looks back to the glory days of Italy’s La Dolce Vita jet set crowd for inspiration. 

Food + drink: Old Roman classics. Give up your inhibitions and just let the waiters do the ordering for you.  

Amenities: Indoor pool, beach club, spa, boutique, bar and restaurant. 

Our favourite thing about the hotel: Despite its size, you can truly feel as though the villa is your own. La Posta Vecchia encourages you to switch off and enjoy the simpler things in life. It’s not about being seen here; it’s about getting lost. 

What’s nearby? Rome. Need we say more? 

Rooms: 20

Pricing: Rates start at $542 per night.

Closest Airport: Fiumicino Airport or Rome Ciampino Airport

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