Masseria Torre Maizza
- Style Spacious and gracious
- Setting Coast-hugging Pugliese countryside
Surrounded by a grove of ancient olive trees, the 16th-century Masseria Torre Maizza – sister hotel of nearby Smith favourite Masseria Torre Coccaro – has been brought bang up to date with a cool, contemporary décor. High, barrel-vaulted rooms have been accessorised with chrome lights and mushroom-coloured, loose-weave linens, while its spa, pool, golf course and cookery school all provide welcome flashes of modernity.
Need to know
- Rooms 28, including eight suites.
- Rates Double rooms from $224.31 (€164), excluding tax at 10 per cent. Please note the hotel charges an additional local city tax of €3.00 per person per night on check-out.
- More details Rates usually include breakfast.
- Facilities Two heated pools, spa, gym, library, DVD library, golf course, horse-riding centre, bike hire, private beach, free WiFi, laundry service. In rooms: flatscreen TV, CD/DVD player, air-conditioning, minibar, safe, locally made organic toiletries.
- Poolside The pool area is notable for its two huge decks – this isn’t the sort of place where you’re going to miss out on a sunbed. The sea views from either are stunning.
- Check–out Midday, though this is flexible on request; earliest check-in, 2pm.
Children Kids are welcome at the hotel – though, during August, only over-10s are allowed to stay. At other times of year, though, baby cots (€25 a day), extra beds (from €80 a day), babysitting (€18 an hour) and a children’s menu are all available.
- Eco‐friendly They take green issues very seriously at Masseria Torre Maizza. Everything possible is recycled – including the water used to keep the golf course green – and most of the food is grown on site.
- Also Seven-night minimum stay in August.
In the know
- Our favourite rooms All of the hotel’s pleasingly minimal rooms come with off-white walls, lined with old Italian advertising prints. In summer, we’d go for the spacious Superior rooms, which open out onto a beautiful sun terrace that comes with two comfy armchairs. At cooler times of year, though, we’d opt for the long Junior Suite, with its roaring open fire. We also love the Palm Suite, which comes with a Jacuzzi and private pool – ideal for midnight skinny-dipping opportunities.
- Packing tips Walking boots, jodhpurs and a set of golf clubs would all be welcome additions to your luggage, but we’d recommending eschewing them all in favour of a pile of good books.
- Also The Aveda Spa may be more medicinal than beautiful, but it still provides a super-relaxing experience. Its signature treatments involve dipping sachets of freshly picked herbs from the gardens into oil, and smothering them all over you. One of its therapists, Sergio Scutteri, has been voted one of Italy’s top five. The hotel also has a cookery school (€80 a person, including lunch), whereby guests can pick fresh olives and vegetables from the olive groves and use them to produce tasty Apulian dishes – and pizzas for the kids.
Food and drink at Masseria Torre Maizza
- Hotel restaurant With black-and-white checked tiles on the floor and vines snaking across the ceiling, Delle Palme is a romantic spot for a meal. Chef Vito Giannuzzi’s Asian-influenced Pugliese cuisine – sliced Adriatic red tuna with dill, fennel, pine nuts and raisins; red-prawn risotto with a wild mushroom sauce – makes creative use of local ingredients. Indeed, the restaurant proudly operates a ‘kilometre zero’ policy, in which regional producers provide all the ingredients.
- Dress code Groomed Italian chic. Think softly tailored separates and buttery leather accessories. Sunglasses obligatory.
- Top table Ask for the staff to set up a table for you in the orange groves just outside the restaurant; your appetite will certainly be piqued by the gently wafting scent of orange blossom.
- Last orders The restaurant stops serving at 10.30pm; the last cocktails are mixed in the bar at around 1am.
- Room service A full a la carte menu is available during restaurant hours (7.30am–10.30am, 12.30pm–2.30pm and 8pm–10.30pm), and snacks and cold dishes can be ordered at any time between 7am and 1am.
- Hotel bar The quiet and romantic Delle Bouganville Bar is situated in a long, thin room that’s separated into several cosy nooks. Curl up on a sofa in front of the open fireplace, bow heads over one of the intimate circular tables or sip Pink Russians created by Puglia’s best barman – it’s true, he’s won an award – by candlelight on the outdoor summer terrace.