We have made an interview to Mr. Alex Mather, who's just returned from a beautiful holiday in Sardinia, at Faro di Capo Spartivento (photo). Upon return, he has been so kind to come back to us with his feedback, which we would love to share with you. All photos are by Mr. Mather. Enjoy!
Would you introduce yourself to our readers?
• Myself and my girlfriend are both young professionals living as expats in London, England. We’ve both travelled extensively to many and varied destinations around the world.
Why did you choose Sardinia for your holidays?
• We were in desperate need of some serious rest and relaxation (and in even more dire need of a tan) following a very stressful previous few weeks. We were searching for a destination where we’d be virtually guaranteed warmth, sunlight and soft, white sand. It took no time at all poking around the Internet, perusing various vacation possibilities, to become engrossed in the idea of reclining with a cold drink and a good book on the beautiful Sardinian beaches.
According to your personal experience, what’s your opinion about Sardinia?
• I could opine at headache-inducing length about our wonderful experience in Sardinia. It’s difficult to capture the beauty and uniqueness of the island in a picture, let alone by written word. I’ve found the easiest way to describe Sardinia to jealous friends and family members who haven’t been lucky enough to visit before is jaw-droppingly beautiful. We would look out at the Sea, to the jagged, rocky coast and back out to the water and marvel at the sight before our eyes.
What are your best memories of the holiday?
• We ate most of our meals in the beautiful sunshine during the days. Our food frequently became cold, however, as we couldn’t resist leaving our seats to gawk out at the beautiful Mediterranean or at the cliffs we had traversed the day before. Even those views, however, it must be said, were upstaged by the majestic sunsets we enjoyed. We were dining inside right around sunset, one night, when our trusty chef, Giovanni, approached us, excitedly waving and telling us we had to come out and see this particular sunset. Fifty-some-odd pictures later, across two digital cameras and two cell phones (really didn’t want to lose them), we now have an extensive collection of images of that amazing Sardinian sunset.
We also couldn’t help but feel, at times, as though Sardinia was our own private island (we should be so lucky). Whether adventuring up, down, across and most certainly all around the seaside cliffs, or digging our feet into the warm, smooth, white Sardinian sand, we were often left to take it all in without a soul in sight. The peacefulness and tranquillity of our spot in paradise was incredible.
Did you enjoy your stay at Faro di Capo Spartivento? Has it met your expectations?
• We have stayed at five-star hotels and resorts in major metropolises, exotic locales and everything in between. None, in hindsight, came anywhere close to matching the kindness, professionalism and courteousness extended to us by the Faro Capo Spartivento staff. Giovanni and Roberto, along with the rest of the hotel team will stay a part of our vacation memories for long to come. As I sent in a message to my family (toiling in a Canadian winter) shortly after arrival, the service at Faro Capo Spartivento makes the Ritz look like the Holiday Inn.
The quality of the staff is matched in beauty by the resort and its grounds. Perched atop a cliff on a jagged outcropping of ancient rock, nestled in between gorgeous white sand beaches and standing proudly in front of a rich, blue sea, Faro Capo Spartivento is really quite a remarkable place.
Not only did the hotel meet our expectations, it’s safe to say that it completely re-wrote what we have come to expect of our future vacation destinations.
Would you suggest a charming holiday to Sardinia to your friends?
• The individuals at Charming Sardinia deserve extensive and genuine praise for their efforts with our vacation. They were outwardly accommodating, polite and professional from start to finish, in a manner and to an extent that is very rare. They took care of every detail of our trip and were an undoubted pleasure to work with. We really do not have enough positive things to say about Charming Sardinia, Faro Capo Spartivento, its staff and, not least of all, beautiful Sardinia.
Hi Giulia, I would like to further update that Mr. Atzeri, the GM of the CharmingSardinia agency, has subsequently contacted me since my prior post and agreed to the additional 570 euro refund per the CharmingSardinia policy. While I still have not been made 'whole' with respect to a full refund, this 570 euro refund will indeed comply with the stated company policy of CharmingSardinia, thus restoring my full faith in this company. I felt it appropriate to post this update as I was encouraged by this action. Kind Regards, ANDY
Hi Giulia, After studying CharmingSardinia's policies further, they have not lived up to the 70% refund policy published on their own website. Since I was not notified of any other policy in advance of payment specific to this hotel, I am now focused on CharmingSardinia's adherence to their own published policy, which as such would provide me with 570 euro in additional refund. While I am disappointed in this hotel for not returning my correspondence, and feel that any organization with any compassion would provide me with a FULL refund, I am more disappointed with CharmingSardinia's lack of adherence to their own published policy, which should be their obligation to comply with. I urge you to please use your resources to encourage the prompt return of my funds. Kind Regards. ANDY
Sounds AMAZING! I was supposed to stay there two weeks ago for my honeymoon, but we were forced to cancel our entire honeymoon for a medical emergency for my wife which requires an invasive and complicated surgery. I would love to reschedule with them someday, but please be advised that they have very rigid policies with respect to returning prepaid room fees, and they would only provide me with a 50% return of my 2850 euro prepayment despite 25+ days notice of cancellation for my wife's medical crisis which forced us to cancel our trip to Italy. I realize they are a small hotel but they would not even return my correspondence when I contacted them directly about this matter and to see if they were able to rebook my 1/2 paid room so I could pursue the 100% refund I feel I deserve. I must say that Charming Sardinia's staff was very helpful in following up with this hotel to acquire that 50% refund, which they explained was atypical for Faro di Capo-Spartivento to provide, and I am grateful for Charming Sardinia's assistance and professionalism. If I am lucky enough to be able to reschedule a trip to Italy after my wife recovers from surgery, I will indeed contact Charming Sardinia or one of their partner companies for their expertise. Regardless, I think it is important to anyone booking a very costly stay with Faro di Capo-Spartivento or any hotel requiring full prepayment to know that you should carry travel insurance because even a dire emergency requiring hospitalization is not necessarily adequate grounds for full reimbursement. The last thing I expected was the medical situation which evolved with my wife less than 10 days after our wedding day. I learned a costly lesson and will always purchase travel insurance when traveling internationally in new hotels moving forward. I explained and documented my situation to all other hotels and airlines that I had booked for our honeymoon and all of them reimbursed us 100%, and several 'bent' their refund policies in order to do so. My intent is not in anyway to tarnish the reputation of this prestigious venue, but to inform others considering booking that this hotel is very rigid in its policies and one should be aware of this when booking.
Thank you Andy for sharing this and for your wise advice. As you said it is always recommended, when booking an important holiday, to have a private insurance anywhere in the world. Best wishes for a speedy recovery!