Alfresco dining made easy at charming St. Julian's hotel

Reclaim summer's carefree spirit by soaking up the sun, sipping on cocktails and treating yourself to a delicious lunch and/or dinner at Cavalieri Art Hotel

Summer is well and truly upon us (much to my dismay) and there is no place I’d rather be than two feet away from a body of water.

Cavalieri Art Hotel answered my prayers and invited me, together with my guest to spend the weekend doing nothing but lounging by the pool, sipping a couple of cocktails near said pool and most importantly, feasting!

Upon arrival, we entered the hotel, made our way down to the private lido, dropped all of our belongings and dove straight into the refreshing pool, which is overlooking the picturesque bay of Balluta.
After spending a couple of hours alternating between the pool and the sea, the hunger pangs began to strike, and we excitedly rose from our sunbeds.

Sun-kissed and starving, we appreciated that little to no effort was required to move directly from deckchair to table at Pommarola, who had just recently launched their brand new menu.

With a cherry brandy sangria in hand, watching the waves hit the bay below, executive chef Paul Hili surprised us with fresh pasta and a detectable salad. The pasta dish featured freshly made Linguini, prawns and calamari, a prawn bisque and cherry tomatoes. Little did he know that he had me at ‘prawn bisque’, which was smoother than silk and one of the tastiest things I’ve tried in months.

The fresh, crunchy salad was just as delicious, with its sprinklings of quinoa, cucumbers, mixed lettuce, cherry tomatoes and pumpkin seeds, all of which was dressed to the nines with an Italian dressing.

Satisfied, grinning and full to the brim, we made our way back to our deckchairs and spent the rest of the afternoon in utter summer bliss.

The following day was just as delightful. By lunchtime (if not a bit before), we eagerly made our way to Baco Noir, this time opting to dine on the large scenic terrace a couple of floors above the lido.

Few things beat feasting on flavoursome food whilst gazing out over at Balluta Bay. Not to mention the cherry rose Martini we had in hand this time. As we considered quitting our jobs and moving into the hotel on a permanent basis, Paul, alongside his team of incredibly talented chefs, including Massimo Farrugia and Junior Sous Chef Denzel Saliba Hales, brought over our dishes.

Massimo Farrugia, Executive Chef Paul Hili, Junior Sous Chef Denzel Saliba Hales
Massimo Farrugia, Executive Chef Paul Hili, Junior Sous Chef Denzel Saliba Hales

On the menu today? Sea bass and Sedanini pasta.

Stay with me on this one. The sea bass was a work of art, with its toffee carrots puree, citrus and prawn beignet, mash potato, baby broccoli and broad beans.

Baco Noir’s version of sea bass is elevated to a level you have never even dreamt of being on and I dare you to prove me wrong.

I thought it couldn’t possibly get any better until I met… the pasta dish. Fresh Sedanini pasta, pulled rabbit and fresh cream, brought together by the goat’s cheese crumble.

We made every attempt to extend our weekend just that little bit more by remaining firmly in our seats sipping on their refreshing cocktails (did we mention that they’re half price between 6-8pm?)

However, just like that, our dream-like weekend was brought to an abrupt end and a sobering one at that, as I write this from my office and not by the pool.

In case you required any more motivation to pay Baco Noir or Pommarola a visit, dining at either restaurant entitles you to reduced parking tickets.

Have you booked yet? Believe you me, you’re not going to want to spend your afternoons anywhere other than Cavalieri Art Hotel this summer.

Cavalieri Art Hotel

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Water's Edge, Spinola road, St. Julian's

2318 0000