Worth getting out of bed for
You could easily lavish a treatment a day in the Wellness Centre Spa, which offers a health-boosting range of treatments including shiatsu and ayurvedic massages, reflexology, phyto baths, mud treatments and facials. Once you’ve been pampered and pummelled, explore the Mediterranean trail, a picturesque path within the hotel’s three acres of forests and fields. The path includes eight meditation points, natural granite caves and flourishing plants, so you can prolong the relaxed vibe induced by the spa. Drive 30km to the San Trano church, built around a granite grotto surrounded by Mediterranean bush and admire the spectacular views of the Luogosanto countryside. Look out for the church’s monolith altar and a rare black granite rock, known as ‘Petra Farru’. Nearby is the castle of Baldu, entirely built of granite and located in a forest. Beach bunnies can’t complain here, with a bounty of coves and coasts to choose from. There’s the glamorous La Celvia, a 20-minute drive from the hotel. A sprinkling of shack-style bars adds a Caribbean atmosphere to this hip haunt, beloved of celebrities, politicians and off-duty bankers. A more family friendly choice is La Marinella beach, 4km from Porto Rotondo. This tranquil stretch of white sand faces the islands of Soffi and Mortorio and there are plenty of romantic little coves to discover, beyond the main beach. Spiaggia Del Principe, named after Prince Āgā Khān’s preference for this nook of the island, is indeed a retreat fit for royalty. It has two stunning sections of powder-soft sand, separated by a promontory of blush-pink rock, and shimmering azure water. When/if you get bored of the beach, browse and barter at the San Pantaleo market, on Thursday mornings. Stock up on Sardinian olives, sausage and sundried tomatoes, then admire the art on display in the church.
For fresh seafood, dazzling views of the Costa Smerelda and equally eye-pleasing clientele, dine at Tanit, harbourside in Poltu Quatu (+39 0789 95500). If you’re after fresh, rustic pizza in a relaxed setting, dine at Vecchio Mulino on Strada Statale, near Arzachena (+39 0789 81943). For a Michelin-starred affair, sample reinterpreted Sardinian specialities at Ristorante Gallura, a deservedly popular restaurant at 145 Corso Umberto, in Olbia (+39 0789 24648). Ristorante Madai (+39 (0)789 91056) is an elegant, stylish place to eat, and has a breezy courtyard, but be warned: portions are fashionably small, prices fashionably high.
People-watch over a glass of prosecco in Caffè Nina, a small bar on Piazza della Chiesa (+39 33 8368 7288; www.caffenina.it) in the centre of San Pantaleo.