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Palermo Italy Hotels - Finding History in Parlermo, Italy Hotels

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Palermo, Italy is the capital of the island of Sicily and one of the richest and most varied cultural locations in all of Europe, a richness reflected in the variety of Palermo, Italy hotels, as well as in Palermo’s architecture and culture generally.

The wealth of influences on Palermo came about because the city is blessed, or cursed, depending on one’s perspective, with one of the richest histories of any European city. That richness results from a history of capture and occupation by a variety of outsiders attracted by the city’s strategic location and its value as a maritime base of operations, beginning with the Phoenicians in 734 BC and continuing through the Carthaginians, the Greeks and the Romans. Those classical invaders were followed by the Germanic Vandals in 440 AD and, as if another ingredient was necessary, the Arabs, who were in turn displaced by the Normans, who lost out to a second Arab conquest that lasted for 300 years until Christian rule was reimposed.

Sicilians may have barely had time to catch their breath between successive rulers, but the resulting metropolis is exceptional in its amalgamation of competing architectural tastes and styles, often visible within a single castle, palace or cathedral.

In sum, Palermo is a remarkable city that has become an increasingly popular tourist destination, and Palermo, Italy hotels are plentiful from grand luxury establishments to modest Bed and Breakfasts, from the city center to the outskirts to the surrounding countryside. Which Palermo, Italy hotels offer the best opportunity to savor this remarkable cultural stew?

Hotels in the city center are the place to start for the old-world luxury of the grand hotel tradition.

The Excelsior Palace is among the best known Palermo, Italy hotels, situated near the harbor and the famous English Garden and located within Palermo’s commercial district. It is now a Hilton property known at the Excelsior Hilton Palermo, with most rooms in this 19th-century building having been recently renovated, and it has added a fitness center and business center to complement full-service restaurants. Rooms are simply and comfortably furnished and many offer small balconies. A bit of investigation may help travelers find a room that is not directly on the street, where life can get a bit noisy.

Another glamorous option from the old school, the Grand Hotel et Des Palmes offers 176 rooms on four floors, close to all the main attractions. The hotel started life as a residence in 1856, became a hotel in 1874 and has retained much of the charm of a bygone era, including a rooftop restaurant. The hotel may not be completely up to contemporary standards in terms of amenities, but its art nouveau grace is sufficient compensation.

Not every Palermo, Italy hotel need by on the grand scale to be worthwhile.

The Orientale is housed in an 18th Century palazzo and retains many of the antique details in its public spaces. Rooms, in comparison, are somewhat spartan, but this is balanced by the layout of the hotel around an interior courtyard that adds a great deal of charm while subtracting a great deal of potentially troublesome street noise.

The Hotel Joli, in the center of town, offers rooms that look out over the Piazza or the park. Among hotels in Palermo, the Joli is a solid midrange option, although it pays to know that the variety of room sizes in the hotel is much greater than most, ranging from the closet-like to the expansive. Balconies, however, are plentiful.

Two further option for Palermo, Italy hotels are not, strictly speaking, in Palermo, but they’re within manageable distance in Cefalu and deliver a different experience.

The Alaba tra i Pini offers simple rooms situated in a pine forest in the hills overlooking the sea, with superb views and a chance to escape from the bustle of Palermo itself. The Casa Cicerone is similar in its simplicity, but sits on the shore, offering both rooms and small apartments. Cefalu itself is a charming port town that bears some exploring, and either of these Palermo, Italy hotels would make a good base of operations for local and regional sightseeing.

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