Historical villa with a British royal connection,
infinity pool and an enchanting view
Don Mimì is a historical villa in a breathtaking location – perched on the lip of the cliff that tumbles down from Taormina to the coast. The views – especially of Isola Bella at dawn are legendary – and apparently, much appreciated Edward VII, who was a secret and frequent visitor to the villa in the early 20th century during an affair with the owner, Miss Mabel Hill.
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Rebuilt in the 1940s by Tommaso Buzzi, an architect then much in vogue among the Italian aristocracy, it became the property of Don Mimì Guarnaschelli, owner of Taormina’s casino. During the 1950s and 60s, when Taormina was considered the ultimate in jet-set chic, visitors to the villa included Marlene Dietrich, Gregory Peck, Kirk Douglas and Louis Armstrong. Guarnaschelli was famous for his hospitality and took care to make sure that returning guests were always allocated the same room. Richard Burton apparently tried for years to buy the villa, but without success – the Guarnaschellis were unwilling to sell.
The several decades the villa was neglected, but a painstaking three-year restoration has returned the villa, with its sweeping panoramic terraces and graceful, interlinked reception rooms, to its former glory.
The villa has two floors. The ground floor, with access to the garden, has a series of interlinked reception rooms with huge windows looking over the gardens and down to the sea. Also on this floor are the breakfast room, dining room, kitchen and guest bathroom. Stairs lead to the upper floor with six double bedrooms and five bathrooms. Every room has fabulous views.
The villa is surrounded by lush, mature gardens and has a magnificent infinity pool with wonderful views across to Isola Bella. Little areas in the gardens are set up for outside eating, or for lying in the shade on a hot summer’s day.
Large dining room
Small dining room
6 double bedrooms
5 bathrooms – two with whirlpool bath
Several terraces with exterior furniture
Infinity pool with panoramic view
Spending a holiday in oasis of peace, surrounded by nature, yet right in the heart of Taormina
Being in walking distance of Taormina’s bars, nightclubs and Greek Theatre.
Groups of friend seeking a holiday that combines, culture, nature, the sea and nightlife.