NH Collection Grand Hotel Convento di Amalfi

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Discover the NH Collection Grand Hotel Convento di Amalfi, which was once a medieval monastery built at the behest of Pope Celestino III.

NH Collection Grand Hotel Convento di Amalfi was constructed when mighty kings and towering castles ruled Europe for centuries following the fall of the Western Roman Empire.

The foundation of the NH Collection Grand Hotel Convento di Amalfi dates back to 1212, when a medieval monastery once occupied the grounds. Cardinal Pietro Capuano—a nobleman from Amalfi—was elected by Pope Celestino III to develop such as site several years prior in 1193. Known as the Saint Pietro a Toczolo, Cardinal Capuano selected a cave in hill of Falconcello for the structure. The choice to settle the church in a cave was a tradition within Christian Asceticism, in which secluded pray allowed for unhindered religious contemplation. In 1214, two years after the foundation, the Cenobium was consigned to Cistercians monks coming from Fossanova. It became an abbey in 1223 and, after ten years, was directly dependent from the Cistercians’ mother house in France. In 1223, the Emperor Federico II of Palermo sent a special declaration to the Abbot of Amalfi, informing that he was underneath his protection. This privilege allowed the convent to live in prosperity, which lasted well into the first-half of the 15th century.

The monks eventually left the monastery in 1452. The University of Amalfi subsequently restored the complex, which was eventually occupied by a new order of monks known as the Cappuccini Friars nearly five decades later. They then started an ambitious renovation of the location, and employed the renowned architect Matteo Vitale for the project. The friars stayed in the convent for more of two centuries, reorganizing it according to their rules: individual cells serviced by a refectory, and a kitchen. They abolished anything that could cause static problems (half of the cloister), and reinforced the convent. The friars left in 1813 following the suppression of ecclesiastical wells in the wake of Napoleon’s occupation of the Italian Peninsula. The Archbishop of Amalfi intended to use the site as another refectory, but it sat dormant for some time. It was not until 1836 that King Ferdinando II of the Two Sicilies allowed for the Cappuccinis to briefly return. On May 1, 1840, the formal act between the Archbishop Bianco and the Provincial of the Cappuccini of Salerno was signed that allowed the move. The Cappuccini friars stayed in the convent until 1866, when another decree was issued that permanently closed the convent.

During November of 1866, the Town Hall Council of Amalfi decided to convert the convent into a Nautical Institute with the aim of reviving the historic maritime heritage of the area. The building later became the Hotel Cappuccini from 1882 to 2002, which serviced the tourism industry that was gradually growing throughout the area. Subsequent renovations were done to the building over the years, including the restoration of the historic cloister by the Province of Salerno’s Organization of Antiques and Monuments. Now known as the NH Collection Grand Hotel Convento di Amalfi, this fantastic holiday destination is among the most luxurious vacation retreats in southern Italy. Visitors today can not only view the stunning history of this former convent, but they can also experience the rich history of the UNESCO-recognized town of Amalfi.

  • History Mystery +
    Which historic hotel was originally a 13th century Cistercians monastery? Hint: This historic hotel is located in one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites If you guessed NH Collection Grand Hotel Convento di Amalfi (1212) in Amalfi, Italy, you guessed correctly! Located in a 13th century monastery, which once was home to Cistercians monks and Cappuccini friars, the Grand Hotel Convento di Amalfi is perched on a clifftop high above sea level with spectacular views of Amalfi and the Mediterranean Coast and only steps away from the historic city center and the harbor of Amalfi. The Grand Hotel Convento di Amalfi is one of the most important monuments on the Amalfi Coast. For centuries, the beauty of the place, the flight of steps, the natural cave, the cloister, and the lemon gardens have provided inspiration for artists, painters, photographers, and travelers from around the world. Included as one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites, Amalfi is a picturesque town along the southern coast of Italy, surrounded by dramatic cliffs and exquisite scenery. With the foundation dating back to 1212 by the Cardinal Pietro Capuano, the original site became an abbey in 1223, and was directly dependent on the Cistercians. The monks left in 1452, and the University of Amalfi restored the complex. In 1583, the Cappuccini friars obtained the convent, staying for more than two centuries. Converted into a hotel in 1882, the Grand Hotel Convento di Amalfi has been and still is one of the most significant monuments of the entire Amalfi Coast, providing a long history of exceptional hospitality to royalty, aristocracy, and celebrities.

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