In the summer of 1886 an explosion of dynamite tore open the ancient walls of Ortigia and announced the renaissance of Syracuse.

The ancient stones found new life in new neighbourhoods, the first hotels are born, and wide and orderly streets are created for the Syracusans to expand Ortigia.

Here you will find yourself on what used to be the edge of ancient and medieval Ortigia, right where the wall stood which surrounded the island.

Sleep in what used to be the luxurious Cavour Palace Hotel, built in the late 1800s on the ancient walls. The hotel was requisitioned during the Second World War, first by the Germans for their headquarters, then by the Allies during their landing.


Autentica Ortigia was born from the love of history and culture. Autentica, because it belongs to everyone and no one. Ortigia has been Greek, Roman, Byzantine, Arab, Norman and Swabian, then Aragonese, Spanish and Bourbon. You will find traces of these stories while wandering through the narrow streets.

The Bottai neighbourhood, where the artisans built the barrels that were used to transport goods by ship.

The Duomo district, inhabited by the nobles with their majestic palaces and large courtyards for their carriages.

Then there is the ancient Mastrarua district with its magnificent mansions; Maniace, the castle built by Frederick II; and Maestranza, the site of the major east-west street of the Greek and Roman era.

Cannamela is the small eighteenth-century district where shops processed sugar cane. And finally Graziella, the fishermen’s quarter, that has retained all its charm intact.

First capital of Magna Graecia then destroyed and sacked by the Arabs who moved the center to Palermo, Ortigia became a fortified city when in 1516 Carlo V undressed the Greek theater and the Roman amphitheater and transported its stones to Ortigia to raise mighty walls and majestic ramparts. To then be reborn in 1900 with its history and its treasures.

We want to tell you this, this is the sign of two thousand years of history that we want to leave in your trolley when returning home.