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Best of the Best 2013: Resorts: Monastero Santa Rosa

Samantha Brooks

In the 17th century, the Amalfi Coast’s most notable families often sent their eldest daughters to Monastero Santa Rosa in lieu of marrying them off and distributing their wealth. Dramatically perched atop a cliff just north of the fishing village of Conca dei Marini, the sanctuary was hardly monastic, with its intricately landscaped gardens and detailed architectural moldings and vaulted ceilings. Last year, following more than a decade of renovations, Monastero Santa Rosa (+39.089.83.21.199, www.monastero​santarosa.com) reemerged as an unquestionably lavish resort. The 20-room property’s restoration, led by the local architect Francesco De Martino, maintained the structure’s original integrity while adding contemporary amenities that include an infinity pool, a Mediterranean restaurant, a bar, a library, and guest rooms with deep-soaking tubs, rain showers, and striking ocean views. Most indulgent, however, is Monastero Santa Rosa’s modern spa, which features a Vichy treatment room, a glass-tiled pool, and a vaulted tepidarium carved from the space once used by the nuns to make wine. ($500–$3,250)