Your guide to villa thrillers! From affordable hilltop hideaways to five-star island retreats – here’s our pick of the best houses to rent, all with availability this summer
- If your budget is less than £1,000 a week, check out Casa del Cavaliere in Tuscany, east of Cortona
- If you’ve got a little more cash to splash, Beach House Antonetta in Puglia, Italy, comes recommended
- Push the boat out with a stay at Villa Ezzahra on the outskirts of Marrakech, which comes fully staffed
Are you on the hunt for the perfect villa for your summer holiday but don’t know where to start?
Here we present a pick of the best rental properties to suit all budgets, from a simple spot in Sardinia to a majestic fully-staffed lodge in Morocco.
The villas are currently available to book, so scroll down and snap them up before they go…
Less than £1,000 a week
Rustic in Tuscany
Casa del Cavaliere in Tuscany boasts a 12-metre pool with panoramic views of the rolling hills above the Niccone Valley
Stay in Casa del Cavaliere, a lovely converted tobacco barn in Tuscany, about ten miles east of Cortona, and enjoy the peaceful setting.
Panoramic views of the rolling hills above the Niccone Valley are to be had from the sunloungers by the 12-metre pool, which is surrounded by well-kept gardens dotted with olive trees. Inside, expect timber beams, stone floors, a wood-burning stove and two cosy rooms.
Details: Seven nights from £833 to £1,881, sleeps four; nearest airport, Florence (BA, Vueling, CityJet), is 60 miles away (020 3603 7282, cvvillas.com).
Villa L’Arco, in the north of Sardinia, has a lovely garden with a swimming pool, a ‘hydromassage’ pool and a terrace
Deep in countryside in the north of Sardinia, yet close enough to beaches for day trips, Villa L’Arco has a tucked-away feel on a hillside. There’s a lovely garden with a swimming pool, a ‘hydromassage’ pool and a terrace for sundowners.
The villa’s interior is simple and homely in style. It has a kitchen with a large dining table, two bedrooms and a sofa-bed. The village of Bassacutena, two miles away, has a little café, bar and shops.
Details: Seven nights from £699 to £1,899, sleeps up to seven; nearest airport, Olbia (BA, Easyjet), is 28 miles away (01202 484858, justsardinia.co.uk).
Hilltop House on the Ionian island of Ithaca comes with a seven-metre pool and al fresco dining area shaded by grapevines
Hilltop House lives up to its name, a ten-minute stroll up a slope from the sleepy fishing village and marina of Kioni on the northeast of the Ionian island of Ithaca.
It comes with a seven-metre pool, al fresco dining area shaded by grapevines, three simply decorated bedrooms and a lounge with exposed beams, antiques and comfy sofas. Great walks along ancient pathways are to be had in the surrounding countryside.
Details: Seven nights from £950 to £2,280, sleeps five; the nearest airport is on Kefalonia (BA, Easyjet, Ryanair), then it’s 15 miles to Sami’s port for a one-mile ferry ride to Ithaca (01243 820928, ionian-villas.co.uk).
Set in the countryside but just a 15-minute walk from the main square of Campanet, a small town in northern Majorca, Finca S’Hort Misser is suited to families. The eight-metre pool, which is on an upper gated terrace, has steps into the shallow end.
There’s a barbecue, terrace with sunloungers and an orchard, where guests can pick figs and oranges. Bedrooms have exposed stone walls, wood floors and shuttered windows.
Details: Seven nights from £793 to £2,424, sleeps six; the nearest airport, Palma (BA, Easyjet, TUI, Thomas Cook, Jet2), is 29 miles away (01789 297705, freelance-holidays.co.uk).
Less than £2,000 a week
Beach House Antonetta in Puglia Italy is a minimalist villa facing the Adriatic Sea
Base yourself by a lovely sandy beach, just ten miles from the fine baroque town of Lecce, while enjoying the comforts of Beach House Antonetta.
This minimalist villa, brightened by Moroccan-style rugs and cushions, faces the Adriatic Sea in Torre Chianca in Puglia, Italy. There’s an outdoor dining area, a brilliant roof terrace and a garden with pines, palms and cacti. Bars and restaurants are within walking distance.
Details: Seven nights from £1,200 to £1,630, sleeps four; the nearest airport, Brindisi (Ryanair), is 32 miles away (01223 460100, essentiallyitaly.co.uk)
Croatian seaside village
Villa Vicina on the island of Brac in Croatia has a big open plan kitchen and dining area leading to a terrace
How about staying in a 19th-century villa with a huge garden in the pretty seaside village of Milna on the island of Brac in Croatia? Villa Vicina has a big open plan kitchen and dining area leading to a terrace with a kidney-shaped pool.
It’s been refurbished recently, although old beams and exposed stone walls remain. Tavernas, cafés and grocery shops are a three-minute stroll away.
Details: Seven nights from £1,364 to £3,401, sleeps seven; the nearest airport, Split (BA, Jet2, Thomas Cook Airlines, Easyjet, Wizz Air), is 40 miles away, with a 50-minute ferry ride required (01789 443365, villaselect.com).
Greece for design lovers
The Architect’s House in Greece boasts glossy magazine-quality interiors. The big drawback is the lack of a pool
The Architect’s House is, appropriately, owned by a successful architect, based in Athens — and it shows. Its interior is glossy magazine-quality with tasteful décor in muted colours and the odd splash of modern art in the living area and four bedrooms.
The big drawback is the lack of a pool. However, the Aegean sea beaches of the east coast of Greece’s Pelion peninsula are a ten-minute drive away. There’s a stone barbecue in the pretty garden.
Details: Seven nights from £1,800 throughout the summer, sleeps eight; the nearest airport, Volos (Easyjet), is 43 miles away (0117 9467072, i-escape.com).
Infinity pool on Kefalonia
Villa Roberta, on the Greek island of Kefalonia, has splendid sea views and a ten-metre infinity pool
On the tip of the Liakas peninsula on the Greek island of Kefalonia, facing a distant Zante, Villa Roberta has splendid sea views and a footpath to a platform with sunshades right by the water. There’s also a ten-metre infinity pool, a barbecue terrace and a little garden with a lawn.
The rooms are tastefully decorated and comfortable. The tavernas of the village of Spartia are less than a ten-minute drive away, as are several sandy beaches.
Details: Seven nights from £1,213 to £3,313, sleeps six; the nearest airport, Kefalonia (BA, Easyjet, Ryanair), is seven miles away (01789 297705, freelance-holidays.co.uk).
Less than £5,000 a week
By the Aegean Sea
Jura is a villa on the Greek island of Alonnisos with great views across the water
On the Greek island of Alonnisos in the northern Sporades archipelago in the Aegean Sea, Jura is a villa with great views across the water. It’s just above the fishing village of Steni Vala, with a well-maintained garden featuring a ten-metre pool.
Village tavernas near a quiet beach are within easy walking distance. The four rooms are elegantly decorated.
Details: Seven nights from £4,657 to £8,333, sleeps eight; the nearest airport is on neighbouring Skiathos and included is a taxi to the ferry port and the 1h 35m crossing to Alonnisos (020 7377 8618, thethinkingtraveller.com).
Cool in Croatia
Istria Design Villa in Croatia has a minimalist style with oak wood floors and large windows to make the most of the scenery
The L-shaped infinity pool at the Istria Design Villa offers panoramic views across the rugged interior of the Istrian peninsula in Croatia near the northern hamlet of Zamask.
This hilltop vista can also be enjoyed from a shaded terrace with outdoor dining as well as from the super-modern open-plan kitchen and dining area. The interior has a minimalist style with oak wood floors and large windows to make the most of the scenery.
Details: Seven nights from £3,010 to £4,235, sleeps six; the nearest airport, Pula (BA, Easyjet, Jet2, Ryanair, TUI), is 30 miles away (0117 9467072, i-escape.com)
Corsica in style
Villa Isabelle on the west coast of Corsica has five slick bedrooms and each of them have their own terraces
Overlooking the sea on the west coast of Corsica, Villa Isabelle’s highlight is a long, thin pool with underwater jets next to a large deck with sunloungers and a table for outdoor dining. Steps lead down to a small sandy beach.
The five slick bedrooms are decorated with modern art and have their own terraces onto the garden. The lively town of Porticcio is about ten miles away. Babysitting and a private chef are available.
Details: Seven nights from £3,401 to £11,660, sleeps 10; the nearest airport, Ajaccio (Air Corsica, Easyjet), is six miles away (01202 703500, justcorsica.co.uk).
Chill in the Cyclades
Xinara House on the Cycladic island of Tinos in Greece has five bedrooms and the beach is a short drive away
On the Cycladic island of Tinos in Greece, Xinara House is a traditional whitewashed house dating from the 17th century — once home to a bishop — that has been converted into a hipster hideaway.
The interior is decorated with Andy Warhol and Gilbert & George prints and has a ‘chill room’ with a cinema screen. The five bedrooms are super-comfortable. There’s no pool, but a beach is a short drive away.
Details: Seven nights from £3,084 to £6,919, sleeps 13; the nearest airport is Mykonos (Easyjet), from where it is a 1h 15m transfer, including a 20-minute ferry, to Tinos (xinarahouse.com).
Splash the cash
Finca Aguila on Menorca sleeps 22 guests plus six children and costs from £11,440 for seven nights
With a 25-metre pool, tennis court, yoga studio, gym, library and bar, Finca Aguila on Menorca is quite something.
It’s located on a 60-acre estate on a hilltop between the town of Alaior and Es Migjorn in the heart of the island and comes with a dozen bedrooms plus the services of a chef in July and August (included in the price). Rooms are comfortable and tastefully decorated with contemporary art and photography.
Details: Seven nights from £11,440 to £27,000, sleeps 22 plus six children; the nearest airport, Mahon (BA, Easyjet, Jet2), is about 15 miles away (01749 812721, scottwilliams.co.uk).
Live like an aristocrat
Villa Le Scale on the Italian island of Capri sleeps 14 and costs from £25,500 for seven nights
Fancy staying in the former home of a 17th-century Italian aristocrat? Villa Le Scale in the little town of Anacapri on the Italian island of Capri is just that, complete with seven bedrooms with chandeliers, antiques, fine art (the owner is a renowned art and antique dealer), plus a courtyard with a pool and hot tub.
The gardens are gorgeous, with little terraces surrounded by pomegranate and palm trees.
Details: Seven nights from £25,500 to £48,350, sleeps 14; the nearest airport, Naples (BA, Easyjet), is about 90 minutes away via a hydrofoil (020 3432 7784, firefly-collection.com).
Villa Ezzahra on the outskirts of Marrakech includes a padel tennis court, ping pong, billiards and big swimming pool
Villa Ezzahra on the outskirts of Marrakech comes fully staffed and has its own spa and hammam (treatments included). All ages will love it.
There’s a padel tennis court, ping pong, billiards, big pool, sumptuous Berber tent for drinks before home-cooked dinners and gardens filled with orange trees, roses, palms and banks of bougainvillaea. You won’t want to leave but if you do there’s transport ready to whisk you into the medina or for hikes in the foothills of the Atlas Mountains about one hour’s drive away.
Details: Seven nights from £33,800, including all meals and soft drinks, sleeps 14; nearest airport Marrakech (BA, Easyjet, Air Maroc) is seven miles away (020 3797 3518, ezzahra-morocco.com).
Les Terrasses on the Cote d’Azur sleeps ten and costs from £10,889 for seven nights
On a hillside facing the Bay of Villefranche on the Cote d’Azur, Les Terrasses is hidden away in woodland and built into a rockface. Take the glass lift from the large dining area and lounge (with its wood-burning fire) to the rooftop infinity pool.
Alternatively, opt for the other pool and the hot tub, tucked away on one of the many terraces. The five sumptuous bedrooms are in muted colours and have floor-to-ceiling windows.
Details: Seven nights from £10,889 to £17,938, sleeps ten; the nearest airport, Nice (BA, Easyjet, Ryanair), is ten miles away (01242 547705, akvillas.com).
- Price ranges cover a seven-night stay from June to September.
Source: Read Full Article