Andy Mossack reviews the Alpine splendour of Hotel Marmolada tucked away in Corvara in The Dolomites.
5 pm and Hotel Marmolada’s free teatime snack was up and running. Homemade apple strudel, with vanilla sauce as a tempting accompaniment. Whilst this may be a welcome offering during the winter ski season, I can confirm it was just as appealing on a warm September afternoon.
This classic alpine-style chalet may, at first glance look like a rustic mountain retreat, but take a left or right from the lobby and you quickly realise this is less rustic retreat and much more like mountain chic. There are some beautiful touches everywhere.
The floor-to-ceiling glass portal down into the indoor pool below, the long strings of gleaming baubles hanging from the ceiling and the wooden sculptures of mountain climbers shimming up a central support beam. Floor rugs abound in the main lounge comfy enough to sit and read while sipping a hot chocolate or something stronger. Take a walk to the other side of the lobby and you’ll find the Toccami Cocktail and Wine Lounge, amply stocked with a generous array of local and fine wines and more than a few cocktails to keep you warm and cosy on a cold winter’s night.
The initial alarm at being handed a key to room 101 was quickly dispelled on discovering this was a spacious suite that looked straight out at the mystical peaks of Alta Badia’s Dolomites. King bed in one room, settee and dining table in the other. Fluffy robes in the closet for the pool and spa and windows that look out to the ski resort of Alta Badia laced by the generous necklace of the Dolomite Sassongher peaks.
This is a hotel that has a family stamp written all over it. The Costamoling family have had plenty of hospitality experience running the hotel for generations. Iwan Costamoling is at the helm these days, but that doesn’t stop his mother from keeping a beady eye on what’s happening front-of-house. She even did a tour of the tables at dinner one night making sure everyone was enjoying their Tyrolean cuisine.
The spa was another surprise. A state-of-the-art wellness facility with a large indoor pool, outdoor jacuzzi and a very impressive combination of treatments. Finnish sauna, bio-sauna, steam room, an ancient Roman hot room called a Caldarium, a spacious rest and relaxation area with a selection of herbal teas to sip, and a full menu of massage therapies to soothe aching limbs after an exhausting day up on the slopes; skiing in winter or hiking in summer. Down here there’s also a fascinating fossil collection curated by another key family member, the late legendary local fossil hunter Hansi Costamoling.
It was clear to me though that the beating heart of Hotel Marmolada is the restaurant. Most guests are here on half board and it’s well worth the small supplement over the B&B rate to sample some excellent Tyrolean fare, from a menu that changes daily. Plenty of choices including a very generous antipasti buffet to savour. Not dissimilar to the breakfast buffet, which is taken in the same area. Plenty of cold cuts, salads, fish, cheeses, and vegetarian options on tap.
About Alta Badia
Alta Badia is a Ladin-speaking ski resort in the stunning Val Badia South Tyrol region of the Dolomites. I’ve always been a big fan of ski resorts in the summer because of the infrastructure so readily available to get straight up into the mountains to hike. And Alta Badia is a perfect example. Just a few minutes’ walk from the lobby of Hotel Marmolada, the gondola station whisked us up a few thousand metres and set us down on a high plateau for a circular walk around the Sellaronda peaks before walking back down to the village and the welcoming embrace of the hotel team and that legendary apple strudel.
Alta Badia images (C) Andy Mossack Hotel images (C) Hotel Marmolada.
Tell me more about Hotel Marmolada in Corvara.
Hotel Marmolada, Via Col Alt Str. 80, I-39033 Corvara (BZ) Italy.
T: 0039 0471 836139 F: 0039 0471 83655
Rooms from €140 per night. Free parking and use of wellness included.
For more information on the region please visit the Alta Badia Tourist Board
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