The Junior Suite dedicated to Maria Lai
Sardinian cultural icons at the Hotel Abi d’Oru
A collection of six Suites and Junior Suites dedicated to prominent figures from Sardinian history and culture, with a matching selection of guided excursions. A project to unite the coast and the interior regions of the island and allow our guests to discover essential aspects of the soul of Sardinia.
The Eleonora d’Arborea Suite
The Grazia Deledda Suite
The Antonio Gramsci Suite
The Eva Mameli Junior Suite
Each room is like a miniature museum
In each of the rooms, guests will find a piece of the legacy left by the Judge Eleanor of Arborea, the winner of the Nobel Prize for literature Grazia Deledda, Antonio Gramsci, designer Edina Altara, renowned artist Maria Lai, and Eva Mameli, mother of the author Italo Calvino and the first woman in Italy to teach botany at the university level.
In the Maria Lai Junior Suite for example, you can admire her iconic little goats reproduced on loom-woven cushions and tapestries made by the workshop that preserves the artist’s original drawings. In the Grazia Deledda Suite you can read the novels that earned this icon of Sardinian literature a Nobel Prize, while the Premium Suite dedicated to Edina Altara is decorated with ceramic tiles depicting traditional Sardinian costumes drawn by the famous illustrator, painter and ceramist of the 1900s, thanks to original sketches made available by her nephew Federico Spano.
The Edina Altara Premium Suite
In honour of each of these great characters, we have also created a guided tour to explore their history on the island. Departing from the hotel, we will spend one or several days in the villages of Ulassai, Ghilarza and Castelsardo, or the larger towns such as Cagliari, Sassari and Nuoro.
The tours will include visits to house-museums, prehistoric nuraghi structures and sacred wells, botanical gardens and domus deanas, also known as fairy houses or witches’ houses – the most iconic remnants of pre-Nuragic Sardinia.
Eleonora d’Arborea Tour – Castelsardo
Eleonora d’Arborea is one of the most important characters in Sardinian history. A ruling judge, heroine and patriot, a champion of women’s rights and her island, she governed her Judicate, or kingdom, in an exemplary way and set out the famous “Carta de Logu”, a very modern code of law for the Middle Ages. On her trail we visit Castelsardo, within whose walls she lived for six years and where her sons Mariano and Federico, future ruling judges, were born. After the visit to the castle, which also houses the Museum of Weaving – a traditional art from Castelsardo – we stop at the Elephant Rock and discover the Domus de Fate (fairy house) carved out within it. On the return journey, along one of the most scenic roads on the island, we will stop off at Capo Testa to see some of the most spectacular granite formations in the Mediterranean and, from the lighthouse, enjoy views of Corsica and the Gulf of Asinara.
Departure from Abi d’Oru at 8.30 a.m. and return at around 6 p.m.
Grazia Deledda Tour – Nuoro
Grazia Deledda, one of the greatest Italian writers of the 1900s and winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1926, was born and raised in Nuoro. She was very fond of the country church of Our Lady of Solitude, even naming her last book after it. A truly pleasant place, the location for religious gatherings and festivals, at the foot of Mount Ortobene. After visiting the church, we’ll begin the ascent of the mountain, whose summit provides a magnificent panorama over Nuoro and Barbagia, and boasts a majestic statue of Christ the Redeemer, the realisation of which Grazia Deledda herself was involved in. In the historic centre of Nuoro we visit the Museum within the writer’s residence, to get a better picture of her personal and idealistic legacy.
Departure from Abi d’Oru at 8.30 a.m. and return at around 5 p.m.
Maria Lai Tour – Ulassai
Maria Lai is one of the most celebrated Italian artists of the modern era. Her works are exhibited in several contemporary art museums, including the MOMA in New York. Born in 1919 in Ulassai, Ogliastra, she studied art in Rome and, after a long artistic journey, returned to the island where she found an extremely modern mode of expression through the traditional arts of the place, and its textiles in particular. The excursion takes us to Ulassai, where the “Art Station” houses over 150 works by Lai. A walk through the streets of the village, dotted with pieces that Maria Lai created in collaboration with other respected artists, or in concert with her fellow villagers, reveals works such as “Il lavatoio”, 1982, “La scarpata”, 1993, “Le capre cucite”,1992, and “La strada del Rito”, 1992.
Departure from Abi d’Oru at 8.30 a.m. and return at around 6 p.m.
Antonio Gramsci Tour – Ghilarza
Antonio Gramsci was a politician, philosopher, linguist and literary critic. Considered one of the most important thinkers of the 20th Century, he spent part of his life in Ghilarza, a town in the valley of the river Tirso, in the province of Oristano, where his house is located. Within the walls and rooms of this dwelling dating back to the early 1800s, we can retrace places of recollection and affection, which Gramsci’s sense of nostalgia often brought him back to. These are the environments described in famous passages from his Letters from Prison and Prison Notebooks. After a short tour through the streets of the centre, we will visit two celebrated archaeological sites in the Ghilarza area: the Nuraghe Losa and the sacred well of Santa Cristina.
Departure from Abi d’Oru at 8.30 a.m. and return at around 6.30 p.m.
Eva Mameli Tour – Cagliari
Mother of the famous writer Italo Calvino, Eva Mameli Calvino was the first woman in Italy to be appointed to a professorship in botany. Given her remarkable contribution to botanical and agronomic scientific research and to the development of floral biology, Eva is considered the most significant figure in natural conservation of the interwar period. In a journey from the north to the south coast of the island, we will discover the natural beauty and the incredible variety of landscapes that characterise Sardinia. We will arrive in Cagliari, where Eva graduated in science, taught botany at the university and directed the botanical gardens until 1929. We will explore these same botanical gardens, before touring the streets of the historic centre that provided the backdrop to the scholar’s life.
Departure from Abi d’Oru at 8.30 a.m. and return at around 8.30 p.m.
Edina Altara Tour – Sassari
Edina, a renowned Italian illustrator, decorator, painter and ceramist, was born in Sassari in 1898. She grew up in an all-female family, with her mother and three sisters. From a very young age she created paper toys, which would mature into refined collages, illustrations, paintings on canvas and ceramics. The designer Gio Ponti commissioned her, along with other artists, to work on the decorative furnishings of five ocean liners, including the Andrea Doria. We will discover her talent, which was bordering on unacceptable for a woman of her era, through a tour of the Pinacoteca Nazionale in the historic centre of Sassari, which houses a rich collection of her works. In Sassari we can also visit one of the most important archaeological museums in Sardinia, or continue on to Porto Torres and visit the prehistoric altar of Monte d’Accoddi.
Departure from Abi d’Oru at 8.30 a.m. and return at around 5.30 p.m.
Best rate guaranteed
VIP in-room welcome
Flexible cancellation options
Assistance at every stage of your trip
Customized payment options *
* Please note that all rooms must be prepaid, and that the hotel does not accept bank checks or postal orders as a method of payment.