Malta as a destination has perhaps slipped under the tourist radar in the last few decades. Their beach hotels have fallen out of fashion for the sun-seekers on mediterranean package trips, whilst the city has not reached the popularity of cities like Barcelona for those on cultural – or otherwise – short break holidays.
All is set to change, in fact a visitor to the city will quickly see that the resurgence in Malta as a destination has already begun. Valletta has been announced as European Capital of Culture for 2018 and a tidal wave of renovation and regeneration has hit the city. Crumbling ramparts and museums are everywhere being restored, old buildings refurbished in to hip hotels whilst cool cafes and clubs are springing up everywhere.
Where better then to enjoy the buzz of the city and the amazing historical sights of the Island (more historic monuments per square mile than anywhere on the planet we are told) than a beautifully restored palace?
The Palazzo Prince d’Orange is located within the walls of this Unesco world heritage city and in the heart of the, largely pedestrian, old town.
Dating back to the 17th Century this baroque palazzo is a unique gem. It has recently been lovingly restored to a very high standard – without compromising it’s romantic, historic ambience – and now comprises just five huge suites.
We squeezed ourselves in to the 190 square metre (!) Wilhelmina Duplex Penthouse that occupies most of the top two floors of the building. A private lift to either level ensures total privacy.
It can actually sleep up to six on two levels and has two ensuite bedrooms, a TV room, lounge, kitchen, breakfast room and a big terrace that enjoys stunning south-facing views over the harbour and across to the equally historic Three Cities area.
The apartments boast plenty of traditional features along with a blend of new and old furnishings. The styling won’t suit every taste, but there is no complaining when it is housed in such an amazing building.
It is located in the heart of one of the city’s most exclusive areas, yet only a stone’s throw away from all major sites, shops and restaurants. The quite remarkable St Johns Cathedral – an absolute must see – is for example just a five minute walk along a cobbled street.
If you need any more reasons to visit Valletta here are a few: it is just three hours from Heathrow, driving is on the left, the cuisine is a delicious and unique blend of Sicilian, Spanish, French, English and Maghreb, whilst prices are much lower than in most Mediterranean destinations. How about more sunny days than anywhere else in the Med and a summer that lasts from April to October? Why wait?!
For more information visit Palazzo Prince d’Orange
Images by CELLOPHANELAND* and Palazzo Prine d’Orange.
CELLOPHANELAND* were guests of Palazzo Prince d’Orange.