Paula Goldstein

This must be the Place, Palazzo Margherita

Paula Goldstein
This must be the Place, Palazzo Margherita

Palazzo Margarita is silly expensive.

But hey, I'm using it as a reason to manifest, guys! And if you #haveathingwithfloors, or films for that matter, then this place really should be on your bucket list. The realization of Francis Ford Coppola's personal Dolce Vita sits in Bernalda- a tiny enclave an hour or two from Lecce, the beautiful white-hot city of "milk," which is located at the Southern sole of Italy's boot.

This is a part of Italy which still feels largely unmodernized, both in its culture and style, and as you drive past the magical hobbit-y "Trulli houses" that fill the region, it's like you've been swept back into another era completely.

It's this nostalgic, romantic feeling coupled with the fact that summers in Bernalda are hot AF (a heat you find rarely in the rest of country), that together create the languidly decadent nature of Palazzo Margherita.

The hotel itself is understated in its extreme luxury. There are only a few rooms- each with its own style name and impeccable marble floors. 

There is not that much to do in Bernalda itself, but the hotel has bikes, and so a gentle jaunt and stop for an expresso at one of the little town cafes is probably the only real jaunt you'll want to make.

Inside the walls of the hotel's white flower-scented courtyard, you will find the small kitchen is open for guests to wander in and out of. It makes perfect locally sourced meals that you eat in a setting that's intimate enough to dine in while reading the paper in your PJ's (though only the chic kind - not your husbands old t-shirt and boxers, which is my normal sleep attire).

It also offers cooking lessons (which I loved the idea of, but was way too lazy to actually do, so no comment...).

Their tiny bar is named after the famous roman movie studio Cinecittà (straight out of the 50's), and it serves perfect pizza and astonishingly strong cocktails. 

Companion - Take a lover.

Drink - House Negroni (though you'll potentially not be able to walk after, unless you pre-load on pizza).

Safety - it's a very, very cosy compound created for the Hollywood elite- so I think you're good.

Mini Bathroom Products -  Are from Santa Maria Novella and are the type of cleanliness that's next to godliness.

Wifi - Yes, and it actually works somehow.

Pack - A Missoni Kaftan and big sunglasses, because when in Rome (or near enough).

Must - You must watch a Fellini movie - there are a selection available in the screening room, where the chandelier swiftly disappears into the ceiling for your viewing pleasure.

Awful - The cost of everything, and if you don't like who you are with, you are screwed... so choose wisely.