The yellow Mediterranean sun is slowly melting in the blue sky. It showers water and earth with its transparent rays, immersing water, earth and sky into endless subtle shades of various colors and halftones. The sea falls asleep, lulled by the quiet rustle of its own waves and the play of the sun. You hear how the sea breathes measuredly, drowning with every breath in the endless bliss of its magical being. The sea knows that everything will pass and that only it, the sea, will remain here forever. As living evidence of never-ending pure happiness.
These were my first impressions of my stay on the island of Sardinia, on the legendary Costa Smeralda, this “Italian St. Tropez”, as it is sometimes called by lucky travelers who have been able to get here and spend a week or two here. Stars and millionaires mostly. Many of them chose, like me, to stay at the Pitrizza Hotel. It does not give wide advertising, but the best rooms here must be booked a year in advance.
Hotel Pitrizza flaunts on the shores of a small pleasant bay. The water here is a deep green hue, reminiscent of an expensive emerald in color. Between the sea and the greenery of the hills surrounding the hotel, a strip of sandy beaches hung.
One-story houses (51 cottages), apparently, are made in the style of the ancient dwellings of the Sardis – the tribe that gave the island its name. They are made of rough uncut stone. But just in this outward deceptive roughness, the wisdom of the creators showed itself: the stone perfectly retains coolness in the hot Mediterranean summer. Gray olives and myrtle trees grow in front of the houses, in the shade of which I really liked to sit on a bench carved from a single tree trunk and enjoy peace and quiet. Listen to how the wind rustles in the crowns and the waves argue with the coastal stones.
The Pitrizza’s rooms are decorated in a very eclectic, yet tasteful way. Most of them are made in blue and white. White walls, bedspreads and rugs, blue tiled tiles in the bathroom. I stayed in the Junior Suite, which is just up the hill. With a terrace overlooking the sea. With wonderful rocking chairs and a table where in the morning they served me great coffee, brewed according to one god-known unique recipe, and, of course, the freshest croissants. (This is how my morning went. As for the evening, I asked to bring me a bottle of wine, well, for example, Piedmontese Bruno Giacosa Barbaresco Asili 2000, and spent a couple of hours in wonderful communication with a local young fortuneteller, who turned out to be very wise and pleasant to talk to a woman who invariably reminded me of the beauties from the gothic stories of Alexei Konstantinovich Tolstoy.)
Well, of course, I spent most of my days on the beach. Pitrizza beach is one of the best in Sardinia. No boats, no surfers. You just sink into a sun lounger, sipping a cocktail, winking at the gentle sun and gentle breeze.
When it got too hot, I would go to the hotel spa, which offers many classic thalasso treatments: baths filled with healing ocean mud, seaweed wraps, shiatsu massages.
The restaurant of the Pitrizza hotel deserves special praise. The traditions of Sardinian gastronomy – a lot of vegetables, fresh cheese and meat, salads – are revered unquestioningly in the Pitrizza restaurant. Ripe juicy tomatoes, basil, sheep’s pecorino sardo cheese – all this is a must try. This salad will be served with obligatory pane carasau – the thinnest crispbread, which the Sardis called “music paper”. Well, for the main dish, take either pasta with sheep cheese, spinach and nutmeg (culingionis), or calamari ripieni – squid stuffed with rosemary, parsley, egg and anchovies. Fish, of course, is also generously represented on the menu. In the evenings, candles are lit here, calm melodies on the piano sound, as if tired from the hot Sardinian sun. Visitors are asked not to come to the restaurant with children after 20:30 pm.
As an option, consider the hotel Cala di Volpe. This is if you suddenly want a more fun atmosphere. 125 rooms, and among the guests there are usually more young people.
The hotel is very original. Everything here is stylized as an old fishing village. There are even small boat docks in front of some Cala di Volpe rooms.
The rooms here are also made in a simple rustic style: whitewashed walls, rough wooden floors, bright Sardinian textiles. A small drawback of this hotel (and only if you compare it with Pitrizza) is one thing: the buildings are closely adjacent to each other, so it’s quite difficult to feel in Cala di Volpe in complete privacy.
But on the other hand, Cala di Volpe has a significant plus: an excellent restaurant, thanks to which the hotel entered the prestigious list of Conde Nast Traveler as one of those hotels where lovers of gastronomic cuisine should stay. The Italian menu at Cala di Volpe’s restaurant is influenced by French culinary traditions.
Well, since we are talking about restaurants in Sardinia, I cannot ignore two more places. The first of these is La Gallura. First, a Michelin star rating. Secondly, there is no menu, you order according to the words of the waiter. In the first half of summer, many regular visitors prefer platter of fresh seafood on ice, a dish with sea urchins, langoustines. June-July is the best time for tasting them – in these two months, langoustines reach their maximum size and have a particularly delicate, velvety taste. And the incomparable linguine with crab. Thin homemade noodles are served in a tomato sauce with chopped pieces of tender crab meat. The chef will personally serve you your order, and believe me, it will be a pleasant surprise for you. See why.
And another place to go in Sardinia is la Gritta, also a Michelin starred restaurant. Especially if you like the exotic. The place specializes in seafood cuisine. Don’t miss the homemade cake with boiled crayfish and cheese foam and frog legs with saffron and seasonal herbs. Or homemade pasta with cuttlefish and basil cream or lobster cooked in Catalan style.
I really liked to dine here on the open terrace with an unforgettable view: the pale green foliage of the trees enjoys the warm rays of the sun. Music is playing in the distance, some kind of unpretentious lounge. The horizon is shrouded in a purple haze of the subsiding heat, the leaves of the olives look like old silver, and the gold of already ripe fruits sparkles in the dark velvet of the lemon trees. And everywhere the colors and aromas of the most beautiful flowers are spilled.
The sun doesn’t just love Sardinia. It adores her.