The first season of HBO’s The White Lotus was so cool and neurotic that I was hoping for Season 2. So was I ever surprised when I learned there would not only be a second season but that it would be set in Sicily!
Sicily is a gorgeous backdrop, and The White Lotus does an excellent job of bringing the mystery of the Mediterranean’s largest island into focus. Here are some of the locations from the hit HBO show.
San Domenico Palace Hotel, Taormina
The exact filming location is in and around the San Domenico Palace, recently acquired and restored by the Four Seasons Group.
The legendary Taormina hotel, which overlooks ancient ruins and Mt. Etna, stands in for the fictional White Lotus Resort Sicily and it features in every episode.
In and Around Taormina
- Planeta Sciaranuova Winery
- Castello degli Schiavi, Fiumefreddo
- La Cambusa, Giardini Naxos
- Pancrazi Jewelers
Harper (Aubrey Plaza) and Daphne (Meghann Fahy) take a girls’ trip to Noto, a beautiful town approximately 90 miles south of Taormina. There they stay in a magnificent villa that Meghann “saw in Architectural Digest.”
The Noto villa where they stay is actually in Palermo. Built in the 16th century, Villa Tasca is situated on a 20-acre estate on the road between Palermo and Monreale and is a popular wedding/reception venue.
An aside: Harper and Daphne took a private car to Noto. But you can take the train from Taormina to Noto, a slow, coastal ride of about 3 hours and 20 minutes.
To make things confusing—maybe that’s the point—the luxurious villa where Tanya and Portia stay for two nights during their excursion to Palermo is actually in Noto.
Villa Elena, which was indeed profiled in Architectural Digest, is owned by celebrated interior designer Jacques Garcia. The former monastery turned exquisite villa is the subject of the 2022 coffee table book Jacques Garcia: A Sicilian Dream: Villa Elena.
This post first published on 14 September 2022
Updated on 9 March 2023