the thinking traveller akrothea

Whether it’s for a romantic escape, a break with your best friends or a family get together, renting a villa is the ultimate holiday experience. It provides the ideal setup for spending hours on end dining al fresco or lounging poolside above the Mediterranean, all in complete privacy. This list showcases our favourite villas in Greece and Italy, ranging from luxury homes you can share with several families to spots that are perfect for two.

Letting Loose with Friends

Hidden on Corfu’s fashionable north-east coast, Katavolos House is dotted with turquoise-shuttered French windows, big enough for ten and is perfect for a party. The huge outdoor table has breathtaking sea views and is just the spot for long dinners with all of your closest friends. As the evening progresses, move towards the property’s canopy-covered area that is great for late-night chitchats and drinks. The expansive pool is the center of daytime activities, or should we say, sipping rosé and sunbathing. For day trips or nights out, Corfu Town is just a short drive away.

Romantic Getaway

The charming Althea villa at Dolphin Point on the Ionian island of Lefkada is the ultimate romantic destination. With outdoor dining alcoves ideal for candlelit meals à deux and an infinity pool overlooking the sea, this is the perfect spot for lovers in search of a secluded retreat. The best part? Private sea access worthy of a Dolce & Gabbana ad!

Countryside Retreat

One of the most private destinations one could choose, Chirchiaro is a Sicilian villa which stands out amid the rolling hills of the southern Italian countryside. This doesn’t have to mean missing out on going to the beach, though: the villa is a short drive from the island’s stunning coastline. Along with making day trips to the sea, whether you want to relax with a good book by the pool, bike past the surrounding fields and ancient towns, or indulge in locally grown food, you will come home completely refreshed and revitalised. What not to miss: grape harvest season. Towards the end of summer and beginning of autumn, it is harvest time on the villa’s property, so testing out its fruit is a must if you can make it during that time of year.

Pure Luxury

At the peak of luxury, Don Arcangelo all’Olmo sleeps 24 and has sprawling gardens with views of both the sea and Mount Etna. The house itself has enough bedrooms, complete with high vaulted ceilings and directly accessible balconies, to easily accommodate several families at once, so it’s the ideal destination for a group trip. The grounds include a stunning swimming pool surrounded by lemon groves and olive trees as well as a leafy covered terrace for enjoying outdoor meals. And there’s no need to leave your poolside chaise longue: the villa comes fully equipped with cooking and cleaning staff.

Family Holiday

Akrothea is a gorgeous Greek villa on chic Meganissi, ideal for a family getaway. With an infinity pool that stretches out above a picturesque bay, private beach access, and easily accessible sailing nearby, there will never be a shortage of activities to please every age group. Whether you’re spending the morning snorkelling or the evening enjoying a meal on the terrace overlooking nearby islands, this villa’s amenities will provide perfect family bonding time.

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