The Vogue guide to Capri: where to eat, sleep and sunbathe in Capri
The grand dame hotel in Capri is undoubtedly the Hotel Quisisana. If you’re looking for a place to see and be seen, look no further. Located in a bustling area of Capri’s old town, the Quisisana’s street-side patio houses a restaurant that never gets busy in high season. During the day, breakfast and lunch are served; as the day progresses, the aperitif becomes dinner, then there are more cocktails and a fairly lively atmosphere until late at night. Inside, the rooms offer views of the Faraglioni, or the heart of the city. Originally built as a sanatorium in 1845 by a British doctor, the Quisisana, which translates to “here one heals”, is sure to give you the respite you need.
Opened in 1949, La Fontelina started out as a modest beach shack restaurant, but it didn’t take long for the jet set to discover it in the 60s. starts near the hotel Punta Tragara. Don’t underestimate the trip and come with practical footwear. The destination will be worth it. Instead of sand, there are limestone slabs and the famous blue and white striped beach chairs to relax on. Today, a trip to La Fontelina, which always includes lunch, is a must in Capri. Like all beach clubs here, reservations are required.
On this same staircase up to La Fontelina you will find Da Luigi. Another equally picturesque beach club, Da Luigi is located near one of the three formations that make up the Faraglioni. The place bills itself as the de facto living room of Capri. Since its opening in the 1960s, it has been a place of relaxation and respite under the sun.
In Anacapri, Lido del Faro is a beach club located under the Punta Carena lighthouse. Fewer tourists flock here but the experience is no less remarkable. There’s a restaurant with perfect views and food, and when the waves get too choppy, which happens often, there’s a saltwater pool to swim in.
The fashionable set is known to flock to Il Riccio, the beach club with the Michelin star. It recently hosted a Dior pop-up but even without such programming, the space is not to be missed. Come here to relax on a daybed (access to the water is limited) and have lunch at the restaurant which offers stunning views of the water.
Where to eat
You’ve probably seen pictures of Da Paolino before without even knowing it. Located above Marina Grande and set in a garden filled with lemon trees, Da Paolino is a must-see. Dining here is dining under a citrus canopy (nets catch falling fruit). Order a Caprese, the island’s eponymous salad, and the lemon spaghetti. And no meal here is complete without a little limoncello.
For a more rustic meal, head to the family-run pizzeria Le Grottelle. As its name suggests, the restaurant is made up of nooks and crannies carved into the rock face. Meals are prepared on an outdoor grill and the dining terrace overlooks Campanella Point.
For dinner with a side of nightlife, head to Villa Verde. Located in the old town of Capri, the restaurant with white tablecloths is ideal for large groups and large parties. Seafood is their specialty but the whole menu will not disappoint.
Capri’s dining scene is famous and deliciously laid-back, but if you want something more distinguished, L’Olivo is the best bet. Run by chef Andrea Migliaccio, originally from the nearby town of Ischia, the restaurant has two Michelin stars. Located in the Jumeirah Capri Palace of Anacapri, the restaurant’s signature dish is the homemade lemon-scented tagliolini pasta with burrata, red prawns and sea asparagus.
What to see
When Swedish physician and author Axel Munthe died, he left behind a legacy of healing as well as a reputation for generosity – he treated destitute patients for free. He would also leave behind Villa San Michele, his home and garden in Anacapri which was hailed as one of the finest in Italy. Endowed with impressive horticultural knowledge, Munthe filled his gardens with rare and exotic flora. Today Villa San Michele is a destination for tourists curious to see the once inhabited Munthe idyll.
Rent a boat
Although you arrive by boat, a trip to Capri isn’t complete without a more private boat tour. From there, you can approach Casa Malaparte (the modern Italian masterpiece built in the late 1930s to designs by Adalberto Libera), which is otherwise closed to the public. Gianni’s Boat service is a local favorite, but note that the Blue Grotto is only accessible by smaller rowing boats.
Those afraid of heights might want to skip this recommendation, but otherwise a trip to Monte Solaro, Capri’s highest point, shouldn’t be missed. Take a chairlift – a small open-air vessel that can accommodate one person per lift – from Anacapri, around the corner from the Jumeirah Capri Palace, which will transport you to incredible views and a 19th-century fort and garden. A windy day can have you grabbing your pearls, but the ascent is also half the fun.
A short walk from the center of Capri’s old town will take you to a botanical garden that you can easily spend the afternoon enjoying. Composed of a series of terraces overlooking the sea, the gardens are full of local vegetation and geraniums, dahlias and broom flowers. Here, a 180 degree panoramic view of the island is also available; as is a view of the Faraglioni and a view of the serpentine path of Via Krupp.
A favorite after-hours spot, Taverna Anema e Core has long attracted those looking for a dance floor and a good time. By far Capri’s most famous club, Taverna Anema e Core opened in 1994 and has established itself as an island institution – quite an achievement for an island with Capri’s history.