One of my very loyal reader, Colette, has yet again generously provided a review of a place she found via From the Poolside. She stayed in La Scibina, in Sicily, which was mentioned in my article on places where your kids can make friends.
I’m so glad when I get to hear from readers so do let me know if you too have stayed in one of the stylish places that I feature here.
La Scibina review by Colette
A visit to Sicily has been on my bucket list for years, so when From the Poolside recommended a small residence on the south coast in Marina di Ragusa, I started planning a family summer holiday.
Once an almond warehouse, La Scibina has been developed by the current owners into a modern residence set in a small, verdant garden. Here, you can pluck peaches from the trees while young children can play on the grassed playground.
The residence has just seven units varying in size and décor, and each is named rather than numbered. Our home for the week was the three-bedroomed Dote with kitchenette, family room/diner, large terrace and balcony.
Rooms are painted in white with splashes of green and yellow; furniture and decoration is rustic, and the simple bathrooms are a place to rinse off the day’s sun and sea bathing rather than while away the hours.
For a family of four, being able to retreat to the cool of the family room or sit on the shady terrace was a treat during the midday heat. And being able to rustle up breakfast or lunch without resorting to requests of the staff was ideal. You can order breakfast and lunch at the residence but we preferred a daily trip to the local bakeries and delis.
Activities for families
Much of our time was spent poolside, taking advantage of La Scibina’s large pool coupled with a small paddling pool for toddlers. With so few rooms, the pool area doesn’t feel crowded.
If you need a change of scene you can drive to the sandy beach in a matter of minutes; you can walk but the heat saw us opt for the car. Here the water is clean, clear and shelves gently from the sandy shoreline. It’s a lovely stretch of beach but gets very crowded in August.
Sicily has so much cultural heritage that you can easily take a short journey to go exploring (see tips). Fans of the detective series Inspector Montalbano can visit some of the filming locations, which are nearby. Or, you can settle down to the slow living that Sicilians do so well, which is exactly what we did.
|Rates||From 1150 euros per week in high season|
|Family tips||Two pools, including one for toddlers|
Cot and/or high chair on request and 10 Euros more per day
Visit Castello di Donnafugata. You can explore the castle, which marries Venetian Gothic and late Renaissance styles, and stroll in the gardens to admire the thousand-year old carob trees;
Ragusa Ibla, UNESCO World Heritage site, is a must-see. Explore the cathedral and then take the green tourist train for a guided tour of the old town.
You are spoilt for choice with restaurants in town. Our favourites are Trattoria da Carmelo; Anchoa; and Il Delfino. All have stunning sea views but you must book!
The children loved ice cream at Gelati di Vini, which is where my husband ordered ice cream in a brioche bun topped with whipped cream (a Sicilian thing, apparently!)
|Facilities||Swimming pool with bar service, for a refreshing swim or a light lunch,|
Reading room equipped with a small lending library
Breakfast if you are on the hotel formula.
Heated Swimming Pool, Solarium, Fitness Area,