Hotel Marmolada: Review Of Corvara’s Best Hotel
Hotel Marmolada: Review Of Corvara’s Best Hotel
Last Updated on January 7, 2023
Where do I begin? The Hotel Marmolada, summed up, feels like staying with a family friend, if your friend was a millionaire and had a beautiful cabin in the mountains with one of the nicest pools and spa in the Dolomites.
On our 7 day roadtrip through the Dolomites, we planned for our splurge stay in the middle of the week when we’d be in Corvara. What we wanted was quite straightforward and simple: something central with a nice pool and spa. With all the long hikes and climbing, we wanted to give our body a chance to recover. The decision to stay with the Hotel Marmolada was one of our best and was a true highlight of the trip.
This hotel is family owned and run by Iwan Costamoling, a staple of the Alta Badia and Corvara region. During our stay, I met multiple members of the family about the hotel, including his mother who was always so friendly every time we bumped into her.
The Spa and Pool
I’ll skip ahead and tell you about the spa and pool, which first caught our attention during our search for a hotel in Corvara.
From the lounge on the ground floor, you can look down into the wellness area. Th massive pool stretches from one end and out of view to the other end of the room. The ceiling is a mossy field installation with draping lights. To the right of it is a support column with full sized figures in various climbing positions.
It was definitely a little strange at first, but it such a nice accent to hotel aesthetics and pays homage to the climbing culture in the Dolomites.
The pool itself runs almost the entire length of this lower floor and it is surrounded by plenty of comfortable chairs and sofas. There’s a shower right next to the entrance of the pool so you can rinse before and after you get in.
The modern space is capped at one end with a long fireplace and some beautiful chairs that I would have loved to have in my own home.
We actually spent a fair amount of time here each day after our hikes alternating between the coolness of pool and the warming outdoor jacuzzi.
The Wellness Center
In the afternoon, the spa area opened, so we moved from the pool to the another relaxation area that included a Finnish Sauna, Bio-Sauna, Steam Room, and Caldarium (an ancient Roman style sauna).
The space was warm and inviting and I spent more time napping than reading in those comfy lounge chairs. I was tempted to use the gym, but after all the activities we had done over the last few days and the hikes ahead, I gave myself a pass.
For sauna lovers, there were a few options. The traditional Finnish sauna is the hottest room and the temperature is usually between 80-100 degree Celsius. If that heat is too high, the Bio-Sauna offers a more mild environment with the temperature between 50-70 degree Celsius.
A Roman Style Caldarium
The Caldarium was our favorite. The curved seating is made for the curvature of your back and seat and the whole thing is heated. The room was not as hot as either of the sauna, so it was great to relax in here for a more extended period of time.
But that was just the first part of the wellness area. Go down a flight of stairs and there was a whole other relaxation area with plenty of lounge chairs. This was another beautifully designed space with yet another fireplace.
Each chair had it’s own reading light overhead and a blanket ready to lull you to sleep. The treatment rooms are also down here where a variety of differences massages and spa services were offered.
There were also a few water beds here for a completely different type of relaxation. Remember when water beds were all the rage in the 80’s and 90’s. Well, these are way better.
Dining At The Hotel Marmolada
While planning for our Dolomites trip, I noticed that most hotels offered from form of full or half board that included breakfast, dinner or both. I usually don’t make it a habit to dine where I stay, but in the Dolomites, it’s something that I strongly recommend for two reasons.
The first is that after a long day, it’s nice to not have to “head out” for dinner. Especially after a session at the spa, the last thing I wanted to do was to get back in the car to drive out somewhere to eat.
The second is that it’s usually more economical to take the board option than to pay for the 3 dinner courses separately. At the Hotel Marmolada, it’s absolute no-brainer.
The stay already includes an amazing breakfast and for about 20 euros, you can add dinner for two. By comparison, you can expect to pay about 60 euros per person for something comparable at an outside restaurant and there’s a good chance it won’t be as good as what you’d get at the Hotel Marmolada.
The first meal of the day starts with a massive buffet spread with fresh fruits, bread, pastries, yogurts, cereals, oatmeal, charcuteries, cheese, smoked salmon, etc. Everything you’d expect to find, you’ll find. And with such variety and abundance. It was easily the best breakfast we had during our entire stay in the Dolomites.
There’s also a station where you can get eggs cooked to order and another where you can press your own fresh juices from a variety of different fruits and vegetables. Every morning I made a batch of fresh carrot, orange, apple and ginger juice and Yasmine consumed more fresh figs than I thought could fit in her stomach.
They even had gluten-free options for her and she couldn’t be happier. Lastly, I have to say that the service was impeccable.
If breakfast was any indication of the quality of dining at the hotel, dinner exceeded that. Guests have a designated table for their stay and our names and room were already on the table.
The buffet was once again set out for dinner with a large sampling of local charcuteries, cheeses, olives and salads along with some savory pastries that I had to avoid coming back for seconds because this was BEFORE our 3 course meal. I could have easily been satisfied with just the offerings from the buffet alone.
Every night the menu was different and extensive. There were at least 3 options to choose from each for the entree and main course. And there were always at least a couple of delicious dishes that were very local to Corvara and Alta Badia. We could hardly move after dinner each night.
The View From Our Room
The thing about driving in the Dolomites is that you will come across a new best view every few minutes. It was just that picturesque. After checking into our room, I opened the door to our balcony and I can only describe it as like opening a portal straight to the Dolomites.
From our room, I could see a few of the gondola and cable car lines and the mountain where hang gliders were just casually flying about like birds. It was a bit surreal.
Home Away From Home
We stayed in one of the renovated Ammonit rooms. The decor is a combination of the alpine interior seen throughout the hotel along with modern amenities and touches you’d see in luxury boutique hotels.
The design was minimal but very stylish and it had everything we needed for our stay. The bed was very comfortable and you get the double blankets, that you rarely get outside of Europe. No need to fight over the comforter.
The room also got a lot of light, which is something I really value when choosing rooms.
For those who want the best of what the Hotel Marmolada has to offer, you definitely need to check out the Nautilus Room.
Located on the top floor, you get a massive 55 sqm room that’s partitioned into a living room area and a bedroom area.
The partitioning wall double has a see through fireplace visible from both sides of the room. There’s a large tv, a full sectional sofa and a large dining table.
Not stopping at just having a mini bar and espresso machine, it even has it’s temperature controlled wine fridge and a selection of wines chosen from the massive hotel wine cellar.
But if there’s one part of the room that really stands out for me, it has to be the bathroom and its beautiful bath tub. So simple and elegant.
The Lounge And Wine Rooms
On the ground floor by the reception are several lounge areas where you can grab a seat and get a drink from the hotel’s extensive wine and cocktail menu.
The hardest part is choosing where to sit. Sit by the wine room and you can look down into the pool. Sit by the window and you can sink into the leather arm chairs around a fireplace.
For a livelier atmosphere, especially after a day on the slopes, head into the Toccami Cocktail and Wine Lounge. Iwan, the house sommelier keeps an extensive and personal selection of wine from around the world.
These wine are stored in a gorgeous climate controlled glass room. There’s a separate one for reds and another for whites.
There’s also a private tasting room that’s available upon request and for special events.
The Hansi Costamoling Museum
This was a first for me. Staying in a hotel with its own fossil museum. You read that right. There’s a small museum dedicated Hansi Costamoling, one of the early climbers and hikers in the Dolomites.
On one of his hikes, Hansi found the remains of the “Ursus Ladinicus” also known as the “Ladin Bear”. This was an unknown species at the time. The fossilized remains are actually here at the Hotel Marmolada along with other fossils that he discovered in the valley.
This capped off an incredible stay at our favorite hotel during our trip to the Dolomites. During our visit, we did a Via Ferrata climb of Piccola Cir. Coming back after a day on the mountains to the hotel felt like coming home. Every day was filled and full and I highly recommend planning ahead so you can book a room here if you’re planning to stay in the Alta Badia region.
You can also book directly on the Hotel Marmolada website if you know your exact dates to see if there are special offers. Last I checked, there was an offer to get a 4th night free if you stay 3. For more help with planning a trip to the Dolomites, check out the post I wrote about how I planned my own trip. It’s a route and itinerary that I can happily recommend to everyone visiting the Dolomites.