Created by Matt Baker, ‘Hotel Portofino’ is a period drama series that revolves around Bella Ainsworth and the mystery that unfolds in the titular British hotel she owns. Set in the 1920s, the matriarch Bella wants her lavish hotel to be a home away from home for mainly British travelers and certain demanding guests from other corners of the world. In the process, she doesn’t particularly see eye-to-eye with her husband and also finds herself on the receiving end of blackmails from a strong fascist politician in the area.
While the dramatic and mysterious narrative of the series makes for a nail-biting watch, the scenic backdrops of the luxurious oceanside hotel tend to make the audience wonder about the actual locations where the drama series is created. Besides that, the setting of the 1920s adds to the intrigue of the overall visual element. So, if you are curious about the production sites of ‘Hotel Portofino,’ you might be interested in what we have to share!
Hotel Portofino Filming Locations
‘Hotel Portofino’ is filmed in Italy and Croatia, specifically in Portofino, Primorje-Gorski Kotar County, and Istria County. Although most of the series is set in Portofino, Italy, many pivotal scenes are shot in Croatia, particularly in places where the production team finds similarities with Italian landscapes. The principal photography for the inaugural season commenced in the first half of 2021, with the crew marking 50% completion of filming in June of the same year. Production of season 2 began in June 2022. Now, let’s lose ourselves in the picturesque locations that serve as filming sites for the series!
Since the series is set in Portofino, it only makes sense that the production team utilizes the locales of the actual village in the Liguria region for some pivotal shots. Located in the Metropolitan City of Genoa on the Italian Riviera coastline, Portofino is a fishing village that is quite popular among tourists for its scenic harbor and history. Some popular sites within the village include Castello Brown, Statue of Christ of the Abyss, Church of St. Martin, Church of St. George, and Oratory of Santa Maria Assunta.
Primorje-Gorski Kotar County, Croatia
For filming purposes, the cast and crew members of ‘Hotel Portofino’ set up camp in Opatija, a coastal town and a municipality in Primorje-Gorski Kotar County. To be specific, a majority of the sea shots seen in season 1 were filmed by the Adriatic sea as it stands in for the Italian Riviera. Moreover, several other exterior shots are lensed in the town as its relaxed and picturesque terrain reminds one of many famous Italian tourist resorts.
The production team traveled to other spots in the county to tape extra shots for the inaugural season of the drama series. Several scenes were recorded on location in the city of Rijeka, the village of Lovran, and the municipality of Matulji. Over the years, Primorje-Gorski Kotar County has featured in several movies and TV series, including ‘Mayday,’ ‘Move On,’ ‘Diana,’ ‘Clark,’ and ‘Crossing Lines.’
Istria County, Croatia
Additional scenes of ‘Hotel Portofino’ are also captured across Istria County, the westernmost county of Croatia. For the first season, the production team recorded several on-location shots in the cities of Rovinj and Pula and the municipality of Bale. Thanks to the county’s picturesque and versatile terrain, it has served as a filming location for quite a few productions, such as ‘Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard,’ ‘C.L.E.A.N.,’ ‘Exorcism,’ and ‘Season of the Witch.’
Read More: Is Hotel Portofino Based on a True Story?