The place to remain in Sicily impressed by the newest season of ‘White Lotus’

The place to seek out the true lodge and places from Season 2 of HBO’s ‘The White Lotus’

Jennifer Coolidge and Jon Gries in Season 2, Episode 2 of HBO’s
Jennifer Coolidge and Jon Gries in Season 2, Episode 2 of HBO’s “The White Lotus.” (Fabio Lovino/HBO)

Remark

Sicily is a Mediterranean paradise, the place magnificence, tradition and historical past converge — a magical land solid by the mercurial Mount Etna, one of many world’s most lively volcanoes. Etna’s dominating presence metaphorically divides the island into an idyllic east and a bustling west. It’s the volcano’s mythology and volatility that make Sicily the proper setting for the newest season of HBO’s “The White Lotus” because the ultrarich get scammed, conceal affairs, face existential dread — and, as we theorize for the finale — kill.

Homicide apart, if this season has impressed you to plan your personal Italian vacation, we’ve gathered the real-life ‘White Lotus’ places, from Sicily’s east to west — plus, all sights company missed whereas stabbing one another within the again.

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The ‘White Lotus’ lodge

Tanya, her assistant Portia and the remainder of the tormented White Lotus company disembark in Taormina, the coastal hilltown so near Mount Etna that the Greeks made it a backdrop for his or her Teatro Greco, an historic theater. The next centuries bequeathed Roman, medieval and Baroque structure to create a postcard-perfect vacation spot, together with the 4 Seasons’ San Domenico Palace, the real-life lodge that serves as The White Lotus.

Perched on the cliffs overlooking the Ionian Sea, San Domenico Palace was previously a 14th century convent. It’s as luxurious as you see within the small display screen — 111 rooms and suites, panoramic views, courtyards and gardens with old-world appeal.

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The lodge’s white-tablecloth restaurant is a nightly backdrop within the present — a lot in order that it makes you surprise why company aren’t out experiencing the remainder of Sicily’s eating scene. Even Cameron factors out one episode: “I don’t know why they hold giving us these menus. We all know it again to entrance by now.” However at the least it’s not the typical flavorless lodge restaurant; it’s the Michelin-starred Principe Cerami with Sicily-inspired dishes and a view. The crew will also be seen at Anciovi, San Domenico Palace’s pool terrace restaurant. La Cambusa, a beachside restaurant and bar in close by Giardini Naxos, is used as The White Lotus seaside membership.

Then there’s Bar and Chiostro, the piano bar within the present, which incorporates a cocktail referred to as the Gelosia e Mandolino — impressed by Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton’s well-known explosive battle on the lodge.

However the company are lacking out on close by gems by solely lodge eating: the Michelin-starred Otto Geleng on the Grand Lodge Timeo, beachside La Capinera and the quaint Tischi Toschi.

Seaside

With about 922 miles of shoreline, it’s no surprise that the seaside performs a supporting position within the present. A few of japanese Sicily’s most picturesque seashores are simply off Taormina, like Isola Bella, a tiny island linked to the mainland by a slim path. Among the seaside scenes, nevertheless, had been filmed within the sandier Cefalu, which is situated in northern Sicily. There are additionally small coastal cities to discover that dot Sicily’s shoreline, akin to Letojanni, Furci Siculo and Giarre.

‘The Godfather’

In Episode 3, Albie, Bert and Dominic make an tour to Fiumefreddo di Sicilia to the palatial Castello degli Schiavi villa — the famed “Godfather” house and hideout for Michael Corleone the place his first spouse, Apollonia, is killed. In the meantime, simply north of Taormina is the tiny village Savoca, the place the granita di limone — a frozen lemon deal with — at Bar Vitelli are divine, and the backdrop is a step again in time. That is the place Michael first laid eyes on Apollonia.

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The altitude, intense daylight and notable temperature differentials make Etna the place for winemaking. Take a tip from Harper, Ethan, Cameron and Daphne (minus the awkward stress) and go to Passopisciaro for a day of wine tasting at Planeta’s Feudo di Mezzo, an property on Etna’s northern slope.

“Etna is an inimitable terroir distinctive to the world,” Vito Planeta, head of Planeta’s cultural initiatives, mentioned in an e mail. “Exceptional temperature ranges, mineral-rich volcanic soils, a mountain viticulture with nice character and a focus of magnificence, nature and panorama.”

For thrill-seekers and volcano-hunters, head to Nicolosi, a small city on the southern slope. Go Etna organizes guided volcano excursions in off-roading automobiles and trekking excursions the place you’ll step right into a panorama of fumaroles and craters.

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Whereas the Sicilian coast is attractive, inland is price exploring, particularly the Val di Noto in southeastern Sicily. Of the eight cities, prime of the checklist are Noto, Modica and Ragusa, a triumvirate of Sicilian Baroque. Every metropolis seems like a fairy story, with ornate cathedrals and palaces of yellow sandstone.

On Daphne and Harper’s journey to Noto, they take within the structure, however miss out on foodie landmark Caffe Sicilia, the place chef Corrado Assenza creates Sicily’s absolute best Sicilian cassate (a conventional cake) and cannoli. Simply outdoors of Noto is Villa Elena, inside designer Jacques Garcia’s house, which is used as Quentin’s villa in Palermo.

Pop over to Modica, a metropolis constructed right into a gorge, with labyrinthine streets and stairwells that join its alta (excessive) and bassa (low) neighborhoods. Modica is the epicenter of Sicily’s chocolate; Cioccolato di Modica is an IGP “protected geographical indication” product whose historical past stems again to centuries-old Spanish methods. For a style, head to Antica Dolceria Bonajuto, the place they’ve spent greater than 100 years making chocolate bars and confections.

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Like Modica, Ragusa is a divided city: Ragusa Superiore (higher) and Ragusa Ibla (decrease). The traditional Ibla has a magical maze of church buildings, palaces and slim streets, and it boasts Michelin-starred Duomo and Locanda Don Serafino. However most significantly is Cantunera, the nook store the place chef Sandro Tempo serves his award-winning fried rice balls, often called arancini, which he says are finest loved “in bites.”

Etna, although situated extra japanese, is the good divide for Sicily. “Japanese Sicily has a character that displays the power of Etna — tenacity and dedication,” says Agata Polizzi, an artwork historian and Palermo native. “Palermitani are maybe extra easygoing. Bear in mind we didn’t develop up underneath an lively volcano however as a substitute, for hundreds of years Palermo was the capital of the Kingdom of Two Sicilies and has at all times been the middle of tradition.”

Palermo is bustling, lovely and a totally completely different vibe from the coastal and hill cities. Positioned within the northwest of Sicily, the port metropolis has opened its doorways to everybody since its basis, which formed Sicilian historical past, structure and tradition from the traditional Phoenicians to modern artists.

The outdated metropolis heart is Sicilian decadence with remnants of palaces and centuries-old road markets whereas its outskirts settle down with promenades and seashores. We solely get a short glimpse of town when Portia and Jack dine-and-dash on arancini. However there’s way more to discover.

Vecchio Centro is the historic heart the place you’ll discover iconic crossroads Quattro Canti, Palermo Cathedral, Norman Palace (additionally referred to as Royal Palace), the historic Vucciria and Ballaro markets, in addition to Piazza Marina, town’s historic sq. and port. Northwest neighborhood Zisa, named for the medieval Moorish palace La Zisa, has develop into an arts hub with Cantieri Culturali alla Zisa — previously factories and warehouses — and ZACentrale, a recent arts heart. Politeama is the modern metropolis heart and residential to the Teatro Massimo opera home — the place Tanya takes in “Madama Butterfly.”

Simply southwest of town is Monreale and UNESCO World Heritage web site Cattedrale di Monreale, which is embellished with Byzantine-style mosaics. On the best way to Monreale is Villa Tasca, which is used because the Noto villa the place Daphne and Harper spent the night time. And for a little bit seaside time, head northwest to Mondello or east to Cefalù.

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