Perched on one of Malta’s highest hilltops, within the fortified city walls and nestled in the atmospheric streets of Mdina lies the Xara Palace, a renovated palazzo built in the 17th century as residence for a noble family and whose walls merge into those of the fortified city itself. In the midst of the “Silent City” this boutique hotel is true to its palatial roots, with antique luxurious décor and serving up food fit for a royal feast, with service to match.
No place is too far from the other on the small-but-perfectly-formed island of Malta and the Xara Palace is only a fifteen minute drive from Malta’s international airport and twenty minutes from the beautiful capital of Valletta. In the quiet, narrow streets of country’s old political centre, the Xara is a couple of minutes’ leisurely stroll from the walled city’s main attraction of St. Paul’s Cathedral, minutes from the tree-lined cosmopolitan boulevards of Rabat awaiting outside city walls and a short ten-minute drive or bus-hop to a beach of your choice.
The Xara Palace’s 17 rooms are singularly designed, adorned with select period pieces and antique furniture, and four of which have their own Jacuzzi on a private terrace – a definite way to amplify your enjoyment of the countryside views, we like to think. Furnishings and fabrics, imported from Paris, are in soft neutral tones to compliment the golden sandstone walls both inside and outside the hotel; the interior is made up of wide arced hallways floored with polished marble and dotted with gold-framed paintings. Palazzo chic at its very best.
Why we like it
We do appreciate when a hotel’s ambience reflects its location and the Xara Palace does just that with great ease. Emulating its ancient surroundings and culture, the Xara Palace’s original local paintings, baroque furniture and picturesque internal courtyards make it authentically and atmospherically Maltese. It also doesn’t hurt that the award-winning restaurant de Mondion is one of Malta’s best, known for its modern take on Mediterranean fare and served on a terrace looking out over the island – not a bad way to spend a starry night.