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Sextantio le Grotte della Civita, Basilicata

This tiny, enigmatic region, tugged into Italy's southern instep, may not be as well known as on-the-up neighbour Puglia, but super-romantic hotels such as Sextantio le Grotte della Civita should ensure Basilicata's star is on the rise. Takings inspiration - and design tips - from the area's famous tufa-rock sassi (rock-cut dwellings), this atmospheric sanctuary in Matera seduces with 18 cave-set rooms. Simply styled, candle-lit and calming, they offer a prehistoric take on barefoot luxury. We love honey-hued Suite 13, with its own balcony, glowing alcoves and a fireplace beside the bath tub. Superior Cave Rooms 9 and 15 come with both bath and shower. Even the Tasting room restaurant is set in an ancient church hewn into the rock, with a terrace for gazing out over Murgia National Park.

Sextantio le Grotte della Civita, Basilicata
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