With a private beach, scenic infinity pool, golf course, and nine tennis courts, Hotel Hermitage is one of the larger resorts on Elba Island and offers a solid value. Built in the 60s and located on Biodola Bay, about a 10-minute drive from Portoferraio port, the hotel has 130 rooms, suites, and family rooms distributed among a series of buildings hidden among pines and Mediterranean scrub. Four restaurants -- including one for kids -- offers a nice variety, but rooms are a bit drab and can be noisy.
The hotel is directly on its private beach, part of the Biodola Bay. A pathway surrounded by palms and Mediterranean plants leads to the hotel’s main building and the reception area, running along the tennis courts and a green park with a terrace overlooking the pools and beach. Rooms are scattered in a series of buildings in the pine forest; walking to the farthest ones from the pools or from the beach can take five to 10 minutes along paths fringed by colorful flowers. The hotel has two sea water pools: Hermitage Pool is best suited for laps, while Fuoco di Bosco Pool is an infinity pool overlooking the sea; it has a popular hot tub, restaurant, and bar.
La Biodola is one of Elba’s most famous beaches as it spans 500 yards of golden sand. The hotel’s private beach takes the western part of the bay; the public area next to it can get very crowded during the summer, but this is not an issue for the hotel’s guests. Immediately outside the hotel there’s not much to do but Portoferraio, Elba’s main port, is ten minutes by car from here. Other popular shopping and nightlife destinations, such as Capoliveri or Portoazzurro, are about 30 minutes away.
Rooms are located in several buildings and, as such, are at varying distances from the sea. Most of the them have outdoor spaces or terraces with sea views. Room sizes also vary, and certain double rooms can look bigger than some higher-category junior suites. Furniture is pretty bland, and white is the dominant color. Many floors, especially in bathrooms, are made of Vietri ceramic, with the typical geometric patterns made in the Southern Italian city. Bedding is made by Frette, as are bathrobes; some beds have bedspreads, while others have bed runners. Bathroom products are produced by Acqua Dell’Elba, a local perfumery that has emerged as a new Italian luxury brand; guests staying at least three nights will receive a selection of Acqua Dell’Elba products as a gift.
Some rooms are reportedly noisy, and some guests have complained about the appearance of the not-so-elegant PVC external doors and plastic drying racks on the terraces. Parking is available right outside many rooms.
The hotel’s beach, with its golden sand, is one of the strongest points of the hotel: one beach umbrella, two sun beds, and beach towels are included in each room. In the park, on a scenic terrace directly on the beach, there’s a chapel for weddings and ceremonies can be arranged. There are also a small spa and a couple pools.
Hermitage Hotel has nine tennis courts and a nine-hole scenic golf course on the hill behind, with a view on the bay. Both tennis and golf teachers are available. By the beach, there’s a diving center with a scuba school as well as boat, jet ski, and windsurf rentals. A two-mile-long hikinh path starts from the beach and passes along the cliff (even through a WWII bunker) before reaching the park.
The hotel has four restaurants. Hermitage restaurant is the most formal one and is used for fine dinners: its big hall is considered not too intimate by some guests. Fuoco di Bosco Restaurant in an outdoor terrace is the pool restaurant - with fish, grill, pizza or vegetarian menus - for lunch or Saturday evenings during summer. It’s also a pool bar for snacks or sea sunset cocktails. La Ghiotta is the beach restaurant and bar: it can be occasionally used also for weddings or events. The last restaurant, Peter Pan, is the kids restaurant, with a special menu and staff for the little ones. Room and board or half board rates are available. Breakfast is served on a panoramic terrace directly on the sea, with a good selection of cakes, yogurts, fruit, cheese, cold cuts and a chef preparing eggs and omelets on the spot. Some guests complain for expensive extras such as fresh-squeezed juice at breakfast or bar drinks.
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