Porto Cervo, Sardinia, Italy
Written by Missy Johnston
Porto Cervo, Italy is the main centre of the so-called Costa Smeralda, one of the most prestigious tourist areas on Sardinia’s north-western coast, and a large yachting port with sailing regattas, and docks for yachts visiting on a yacht charter cruise.
This is a village of multicolored buildings, recently built at the head of the natural port and at the base of the surrounding hills. The Porto Vecchio (Old Port) dates to the 60’s and is on the south-eastern side, while the new harbor is equipped with the most modern and complete support for yachting. Together they are the Marina di Porto Cervo, with over 700 slips. The whole town of Porto Cervo was created to reflect a modernist Italian Village, with a wide array of Tuscan colors used to paint the various stucco surfaces of the buildings. The main town was created when the rest of the Aga Khan’s Costa Smerlda was created and built. This is a village designed by architects, centered around La Piazzeta, and intended to blend into its surroundings.
Of course, Porto Cervo has a Yacht Club, the Costa Smeralda Yacht Club, started by the Aga Khan and group, as a non-profit sporting association for fellow sailing enthusiasts to promote related sailing activities. True to the mission statement, the Costa Smeralda Yacht Club sponsors many International sailing yacht regattas that take place in Porto Cervo such as the Perini Navi Cup and the Rolex Swan Cup. The Costa Smeralda Yacht Club now has another station in The Bitter End, Virgin Gorda, British Virgin Islands.
What to Enjoy in Porto Cervo, Sardinia, Italy
Shopping: The town is divided into two areas, the upper part and lower part separated by a stairway. The upper part has many interesting concept stores and art galleries. The lower part has shops are selling a wide array of high end Designer labels. The design of the town was then drawn to open into a nice piazza in front of the harbor.
Stella Maris Church: Designed by Michele Busiri Vici, this is a lovely, almost Gaudi-esque style church, housing the painting Mater Dolorosa attributed to El Greco, a 17th century organ, local juniper wood pews, and massive bronze doors with bas-reliefs representing the theme of the Annunciation.
Nightlife: Visit Ritual Club for an aperitif, and later night club fun. Created in 1968 intended as an artist’s enclave, Ritual is a stylized Castle ruin with interior concrete seating on many different levels. It is a magical combination of Designer Andres Fiore’s genius and Sardinian nature. Located amidst the rambling building holding ritual Club are olive and myrtle trees. The club hosts international DJ’s for all night dancing. Phi Beach is located on the water just outside of Porto Cervo. Accessible by ship’s tender, come to the beach bar for aperitifs at sundown, stay for dinner, and after dance all night in the sand. Also, just outside of Porto Cervo, The Billionaire Club was conceived in 1998 by Flavio Briatore as a chic place for the “jet set” to mingle. Inside the Club are two restaurants, The Crazy Fish, and Crazy Pizza, a Shisha Lounge for smoking high quality shisha, and a nightclub.
Restaurants: There are excellent restaurants in town for a night out and off the yacht featuring various international cuisines. As restaurant quality can change from summer to summer in a resort location, check to see which the best restaurants are when you are there.