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Reviewed 4 November 2016

On the way to a friend's wedding in Basilicata we could not miss out a visit to the town of Matera, a real gem, still unknown to the large public. As always the trip was preceded by a careful search of accommodation, since the wrong hotel can easily spoil the stay, and lead to not so good memories. One thing was clear, we wanted to stay at a hotel in the Sassi (literally "the stones"); I Sassi are to a large extent what makes Matera unique, they are essentially modern day caves where poor people used to live in. The porous nature of the stones made them easy to dig and create rooms into. Clearly it was far from ideal: humidity, no light, stables next to rooms... in short as fascinating as they are, living in them was not at all glamorous, and were eventually evacuated in the early 50's.
Luckily this incredible heritage was not left to decay, instead the Sassi were savaged, and some made into so called "hotel diffusi", which again is probably something unique to Matera. A "Hotel Diffuso" is basically a collection of nearby Sassi each one independent of each other since they originally were individual homes, that have been made into a single hotel. So the search began: the more I looked the more I realised it was a truly unique town, lending itself to the opportunity of having a different kind of stay. Sextantio topped most lists, in terms of stars, positive reviews, price and being an original Sasso. I checked the offers, and decided that it was definitely worth a splurge, and so I booked the suite, I think it was 90 Sqm, basically the largest room available since it was priced just a little more than the other options, with a no cancellation policy. I went for it, and to us it was worth every penny, if anything because one cannot experience anything like it anywhere else. You can stay at any ritz carton, hyatt or aman hotel, have the best suite, all the luxury possible, butlers, bells and whistles but there's nothing like entering this room. Tucked down a short flight of stairs, is a large wooden door opened with a massive, and very old key, beyond it a fantasy realm. A kind of corridor leads to a larger open area, with the large bed at the end, a desk on the right and a bathtub placed on the floor on the left, all around lots of space, filled with candle light. I's quiet, super quiet. Passed the desk on the right is another passage to the bathroom. You got it, the bathtub is in the main room, not in the bathroom, but it works and it's functional. The basin is massive, and used to be the manger, where animals were fed. Then in a corner, and allowing some privacy is the water closet. You can have a shower in the bathtub, though take care of the splashes. The space, the stone floors, the fact that as much as possible everything was kept intact, that the modern touches like AC are discreetly inserted in a this architectural context, that "luxury" is redefined and declined in a less is more tense, make this place worth paying for.
Spending the night was great, and getting up in the morning too, since breakfast is again a special affair. Simple home made cakes, breads, jams, some savoury choices too, cappuccino, juices are all served on a buffet basis. True, we did have to wait fro some guests to finish before we could have our breakfast; simply put there's not enough seats for all to be accommodated at once. But you can still get a coffee while waiting, take a look around, enjoy the dining room that used to be a chapel.. and simply wait your turn. And to me that's fine, I'm not going to spoil my stay.
The Hotel offers parking facilities, that need to be booked in advance, and we did. Once we reached the access to the hotel, basically a stair that climbs up the hill, our car was parked by the hotel's staff, and brought back to us when we left.
An absolutely memorable stay, a true gem of a hotel, some may say overpriced for being a revamped poorest of the poor accommodation, without flat screens, minibars, butlers, restaurants and pools, but to us it was bliss. And the staff, simply adorable and professional.
If you're planning a visit to Matera, have some money to spend, not necessarily to stay in the suite, my advise is, go for it. It will be memorable.

Room Tip: Some rooms have balconies. We had a whole garden. The Suite is certainly a very good choice if pricey.
  • Stayed: August 2016, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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2  Thank Sergio_de_Rinaldini
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 October 2016 via mobile

We had the absolute pleasure of staying in a suite at the Sextantio Le Grotte della Civita. After a long and eventful roadtrip through Puglia we did not know what to expect of the city of Matera. We were solely looking forward to our stay at this hotel. We arrived late in the evening and were starving. We had called the reception in advance and they were kind enough to make a reservation at a restaurant in the area that would stay open a bit late for us. After we ate, we went straight to our room where we relaxed and took in the awe of the amazing space we were in. Most other hotels along our route were nice but we endeavored to spend as much time out and about as possible. That was not the case with this place. We relaxed and enjoyed every minute in the room. When we left, we toured around Matera and were shocked to discover such an incredible place in time and history. Matera is a gem - a must visit - and the Sextantio Le Grotte della Civita is a hidden diamond.

Stayed: October 2016, travelled as a couple
1  Thank Shananasty
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 October 2016 via mobile

A hotel extraordinaire: the stay there was way more just a hotel stay. Rooms are super comfortable and stylish, staff could not do more to make us feel welcome. Breakfast with plenty of local products a homemade pastries is a highlight.

Stayed: October 2016, travelled as a couple
Thank Janis_kalninsh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 October 2016 via mobile

What a wonderful stay! The front desk staff were extremely welcoming and provided a wealth of information. We were upgraded to a superior room which was out of this world. Separate bath area, separate shower area and a heating system that leaves you comfortable no matter what time of day. The location in the sassiest is an easy walk up to the cathedral and access to all of Matera. The breakfast was fantastic and it really made us regret only choosing to stay one night. It is definitely on my to return to list and highly recommend this a stay for a visit to Matera!

Stayed: October 2016, travelled with friends
1  Thank N P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 October 2016

Book room 13 WOW! Superb service. Great comfort ! Ambiance exceptional with candle lit rooms luxurious bed and bedding, soaps , bathtub! The perfect location to experience Matera. Highly recommended so very unique !

  • Stayed: October 2016, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Service
1  Thank suzysteelman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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