Malta Hotel: Domus Zamittello
This morning I had the luck to wake up to the smell of freshly baked croissants, waifting its way up to our 3rd floor room at the lovely Domus Zamittello. The fairly new hotel Domus Zamittello is in a historic building (like most of the old town of Valletta) at the top of Republic Street, which is the pedestrian-only main thoroughfare through the old city. Taxis are only allowed in the old town until 9:30am. If arriving after that, have your taxi drop you at the fountain which is only a block away.
Larkin Mallia, the charming manager, explained that the Domus Zamittello has only been open a year and a half after a 5 year renovation to transform the former residence into an upscale boutique hotel. The limestone building was damaged during WWII when a bomb destroyed the opera house next door. Remains of the opera house are still used for open air events. Larkin was the perfect host and not only made guests feel welcome, but took a personal interest in ensuring that our Malta experience was optimal.
The entrance to Domus Zamittello is tucked between some upscale shops directly across the street from the green Wembly store, a good landmark to find the place. There is a small reception desk in the vestibule with a friendly and efficient hostess that can arrange reservations, tours or help with any questions. The building opens up to an open air courtyard, much like a Moorish building, with comfortable seating and a glassed in roof. According to the manager, this area once housed the family’s livestock, while the small restaurant located in back was the stables and the elevator bank was once the entrance to the courtyard. All of that has changed with the extensive remodeling, creating a beautiful hotel with rooms opening in to the inner courtyard.
Our room had a very comfortable king sized bed with crisp white linens embroidered with the Domus Zamittello emblem. The bathroom was a vision of white Calacatta marble with an oversized rain shower and bidet. Ample luxe toiletries were provided along with complementary water and 3 small almond cookies on a porcelain tray. Three windows overlooked the courtyard below, draped in platinum colored damask. The room was quiet and serene, a perfect place to retreat from the hectic pace of the city.
The included breakfast was served on the second floor in an elegant room with Venitian chandeliers. A selection of fresh fruits, cheeses, cold meats, muesli, rolls, croissants and pastries were offered along with scrambled eggs and mushrooms in a chafing dish. Fresh squeezed orange juice and hot coffee were served by the staff. A very nice breakfast in a beautiful room.
The hotel also has a vast balcony on the 3rd floor to watch the street activity below while relaxing in comfortable chairs and tables. The Corinthian tops of the stone pillars of the opera house ruins next door provide a classic touch to the patio.
The location of the Domus Zamittello was perfectly situated to experience the vibrant activity in the historic old town. Attractions such as the National Museum Of Archaeology, Saint John’s Co-Cathedral with its Caravaggio painting, and the Grandmaster’s Palace with its armory displays are only steps away. The location is absolutely perfect for a visit to Malta.
In summary, the Domus Zamittello was a fabulous hotel…luxurious, quiet, and well placed. I strongly recommend.