The Adriatic Sea is home to some of the clearest waters in the world and is often visited by holidaymakers in Venice. Yet, one luxurious gem is often overlooked by the ordinary tourist. Enter the coastal region of Puglia, also known as Apulia. Italy’s heel is a private getaway for those who seek to avoid the assemblage of beach-going tourists in Tuscany and Campania.
Here, olive-green waters glisten in the sun as they lap gently onto sandy white beaches, dotted with visitors on beach chairs. Most travellers also come to Puglia for a taste of Primitivo, a full-bodied, fruity wine, that is made right here in the region.
If you find yourself travelling down south of Italy, be sure to check into one of these properties. From waterfront establishments to resorts jazzed with a bit of history, scroll down to find Puglia’s most luxurious resorts at your fingertips.
Borgo Eganiza has become one of Puglia’s most celebrated resorts, and rightfully so. The fairytale villa resort is set amongst shore-side olive groves that boast a sense of regality around every corner. High ceilings, cloisters and imposing stairways are just a few features of what makes Borgo Eganiza so impressive. The afternoon Puglian sun is a sight to behold here, especially when it hits the limestone buildings and forms incredible shadows against the property’s canvas of creams and neutral. Make a visit the hotel’s spa, where you will be greeted with barefooted therapists that lather you in olive oil. The Game of Thrones backdrop disappears when you step out of the hotel, and onto the property’s private beach club.
Borgo Egnazia, Strada Comunale Egnazia, 72015 Savelletri, Fasano BR, Italy
Masseria San Domenico straddles a fine line between a modern resort and a classic old-timer. This five-star resort was only established in 1996, and was previously used by the Knights of Malta as a watch-tower. Although the Masseria has a history dating back to the 15h century, the finishings are more than contemporary in nature. Each of the 40 modern rooms and suites is embellished with colourful Puglian touches to contrast the traditional arches and cream coloured walls of the room. Guests of the idyllic retreat will have access to exclusive San Domenico A Mare beach, a powdery white beach overlooking a cove with sparkling turquoise waters.
Masseria San Domenico, SP90, 72015 Savelletri, Fasano BR, Italy
Views of the iconic Puglian seaside can be seen right on the front steps of La Peschiera. Every single frame of this waterfront hotel comes with a stunning scene of cerulean blue, with a gentle whisper of the sea breeze caressing your warm cheeks. La Peschiera has taken it one step further with its aqua experience: not only does it directly face the Adriatic Sea, but it also boasts seven outdoor pools complete with sun terraces. If you’re imagining sipping on bubbles against the backdrop of sparkling blue waters and drapey muslin fabrics, you’ve found the right place to be.
La Peschiera, Contrada Losciale, 63, 70043 Monopoli Bari, Italy
Canne Bianche is the classic Italian retreat: simple, relaxed and effortless. Each of the 53 white-walled rooms comes in the iconic creams and browns of a beach-side retreat, framed with stunning views. A quiet retreat, Canne Bianche is the physical embodiment of the slow life — just take in the sights and smells of the ocean and soak in the comfortable luxury it provides.
Canne Bianche, Via Appia 32 72016 Torre Canne BR, Puglia, Italy
Unlike the other resorts on this list, Vivosa Apulia Resort is located on the southernmost tip of Puglia and faces the Ionian Sea. The eco-resort plays host to 333 bedrooms surrounded by pine trees, along with a multitude of activities to keep the whole family entertained. Located just steps away from a private beach and six kilometres from the Litorale di Ugento Natural Park, holidaymakers at Vivosa Apulia Resort can enjoy the best of both worlds. Go on a horseback ride in the enchanted corners of Puglia, or go for a lengthy rubdown in one of their many spas. One thing’s for sure, you’ll never be bored in this resort.
Vivosa Apulia Resort, Loc. Fontanelle, 73059 Ugento LE, Italy