Hotel & Spa Rosa Alpina - San Cassiano, Italy
South Tyrol Introduction
Review: Hotel Rosa Alpina - San Cassiano
Review: Romantik Hotel Turm - Völs am Schlern
Review: Hotel Castel - Dorf Tirol
Restaurant-Check: La Siriola ** - San Cassiano
The most amazing route through the Domolites
South Tyrol is an extremely pretty place. So pretty that the demand for hotels nearly doubled within the last years. It‘s not that it hasn‘t always been pretty but more likely it is one of the safest places to travel and thanks to its massive amount of privacy a place that is not just frequented by the posh New York crowd. Many hotels are now extending their buildings and add about 100 percent more rooms. To all the disadvantage comes that nearly most of the hotels in South Tyrol look identical. Here comes the Rosa Alpina. Being lead by the Pizzinini Family, this place is a total exception - in all terms. Speaking of design, the Hotel & Spa Rosa Alpina has always been on my bucket list due to the distinctive and matching interior design. It‘s one of those hotels you just want to see to be sure there are still very excellent properties that pay attention to style and the surroundings. Situated between the two famous ski resorts Cortina d‘Ampezzo and Corvara in Badia, San Cassiano might be less known to ski tourists than it is to Gourmets. With one three-Michelin-starred, one two-Michelin-starred and a one-Michelin starred restaurant, it is actually the smallest inhabited town in the world with six Michelin stars.
Obviously, Rosa Alpina is home to the three-Michelin-starred restaurant and it is also fair to say that it is the only member of the Leading Hotels of the World in town. During our scenic drive over multiple stunning passes (the most amazing was Karerpass tough), we arrived at the main entrance of the hotel at around 5 pm. Unfortunately, a group just headed towards check-in and we thought we had to wait for quite some time, however, the Front Desk Manager winked us over to do a separate check-in. This was very attentive and the young trainee did a good job in checking us in, however, we missed the idea of an easy welcoming drink eg refreshing Prosecco or at least refreshing towels. Anyways we handed over the IDs and were shown towards our suite. Located on the second floor, we were allocated a spacious and quite new Loft Suite named „the dreamer“. We both, Lukas and me, fell in love with the name as well as the suite itself.
Just right at the entree was a walk-in wardrobe with a safe, then followed some more wardrobe space on the left side, a minibar with some snacks (at an extra price), the writing desk with a television and Bose sound system just opposite the vast double bed that actually was king size. Moving along the open-plan living room with super comfy seating area, there was also an open fireplace along another seating option and a bathtub on the other side overlooking the Dolomites as well as a Hammam cabin between the bed- and bathroom. A huge window front opened onto the spacious balcony with a seating option for two. The bathroom was very spacious and bright with a huge walk-in shower, double vanities, a separated toilet and bidet along an array of guest toiletries such as toothbrushes and paste, shaving kit and two full sets of hotel-branded toiletries - which were not just generous in size (125ml per bottle) but also amazing of smell and quality. To sum it up the best hotel-branded toiletries I have tried and one of the coolest suites we have stayed in so far.
Since we already had commitments for the dinner, we weren‘t able to enjoy the famous three-Michelin-starred St. Hubertus restaurant. In case we would have had the time for a dinner in-house, I think I would have gone for the recently reinvented Grill Restaurant anyways as I loved the idea of having a cool diner somewhere in the Dolomites. Actually, the menu reminded me a lot of our dinners at the Italian outpost of Four Seasons Prague. In general, I had the feeling that the owners are two well-traveled hotel experts that put in all the currently demanded ideas and concepts. Just one example is the fact that time has passed for the poor quality toiletries or it‘s not the guest‘s duty to call the front desk and ask for toothbrushes when escaping for a weekend getaway. I mean seriously, you are unpacking the Ferarri or grabbing the Harley so why the hell would you have space for the utilities you shall get at a „Leading Hotel of the World“ anyway? Another new concept applied to Rosa Alpina is the dine-around idea with half board restaurants becoming less trendy.
Why would you fly to South Tyrol if you would have to dine at the same restaurant for one week? At Rosa Alpina, you can decide between the Grill Restaurant, the Fondue outpost or the three-Michelin-starred St Hubertus. Why else would you go to the Northernmost part of Italy beside the food and scenery? Of course, the wellness and spa areas. Nearly every South Tyrolean hotel has a sauna or a pool, but it‘s the Pizzinini family that offers one spa for adults only and one family spa. While the pool is bigger for families, the adults-only area impresses with a stunning design being recently opened. A chic indoor pool is located between the seamlessly perfect relaxation area and sauna area with a biological sauna, a Finnish sauna as well as a steam bath next to the cold tub and bar just opposite the waiting area that looked just as photogenic as a cover of the Architectural Digest. When an originally scheduled wellness time of one hour turns into two, it‘s a sign of how relaxed we felt at this spa. Actually, I learned that a perfectly styled spa makes such a big difference in the relaxation outcome.
Right in time for dinner, we asked if we could call a taxi for the reservation at La Siriola. I was totally impressed when the Front Desk Manager (she was extremely attentive) offered us to drive up the five minutes in Rosa Alpina‘s uber-luxurious Audi limousine. We went down and were immediately driven to the restaurant. There was no charge and it was one of the coolest hotel cars we have used. This point goes to Rosa Alpina for exceeding my expectations. When we came back to the suite after an amazing dinner, we were simply speechless as two hiking bags and caps were waiting for us as a farewell gift. Sometimes I have these exact expectations for a Leading Hotel - this time I was looking forward to a heavenly bed (along with a flawless service). Rosa Alpina came up to this expectation and finally I had one of the best nights of sleep for quite a time. We have kept the doors onto the terrace open and even though the main road is theoretically a bit below the hill, we didn't hear anything besides a few birds.
Having slept like a baby, Lukas and me were so ready to explore the breakfast buffet. When I saw the selection of Italian ham behind a bar to be cut freshly for each guest, my expectations were exceeded. Before even having a look into the vast selection of sweet dishes (that didn't just look stunning but tasted even better), I was flashed by the egg dish. Even though they didn't have Eggs Benedict, the scrambled eggs were flawless as the service by (what I think was) the Maitre. Needless to say that the Cappuccino tasted as good as on the Amalfi Coast. I have tried the local cheeses and also the salmon and I have to admit, the quality of the products was simply excellent. Honestly, one of the best breakfast buffets in Italy - just like at Hotel Santa Caterina Amalfi or Principe di Savoia. Again, Rosa Alpina showed it's not about the amount of products but it really depends on the quality of the offer.
After breakfast, I consulted the Front Desk Manager to ask for a late check-out. She immediately told me that there wouldn't be an issue and by the time we were checking out, she also handed us over another farewell gift consisting of a freshly baked Apple Strudel. In general, the front desk manager was very genuine from the very first beginning when she registered that we are not part of the group and arranged a separated check-in. Is Rosa Alpina worth the splurge? Well, you already pay 300 euros for two at any other wellness hotel in South Tyrol so why not going the extra mile and be more flexible for the dinner options? I loved our stay at this absolutely stunning alpine resort and will definitely return, also to meet personally with the owners who seem to be a very interesting couple.
Disclaimer. Luxury Executive was guest of Hotel & Spa Rosa Alpina for editorial purposes. However all above written expresses our own opinion and has not been influenced by that.