It might well be the year of the stay-at-home-summer, but as August commences and yet more grey skies are looming closer to home, the prospect of fleeing Blightly might be ever more appealing for those of you wanting to increase your chances of returning to work with a golden glow. With this in mind we’ve selected the best of our overseas properties to tempt you to head to warmer climes. Unfortunately we can’t guarantee wall to wall sunshine, but what we can ensure is a selection of stunning properties in breathtaking locations, whether you’re looking for a short or long haul getaway we’ve plenty to inspire.
CASA PHOENIX, Mojacar Playa, Almeria, Spain
Chill out in a 200 year-old Spanish finca, boasting modern luxuries in an eco-friendly embrace
What’s hot? The lush gardens, with a large swimming pool (complete with fancy underwater seating), citrus orchards, private terraces, a plunge pool, a market garden and panoramic views of the Sierra Cabrera. Inside, you’ll find chic bedroom suites, Arabic and Moorish style décor, six spacious sitting areas and a Dojo for martial arts and yoga.
What’s on the doorstep? The hills of the Sierra Cabrera are in view and it’s just a 15-minute drive to the drop-dead gorgeous beaches of Mojacar, Garrucha and Vera.
Basics: Sleeps up to 18 (self-catered with a private chef available on request)
Cost: From £6,250 per week; £5,495 for a 3-night stay based on 18 guests. Up to 10 guests can take the main house only for £4500 weekly
THALASSA, Agios Nikolaos, Crete
Close your eyes and think of paradise: a waterfront villa overlooking the turquoise hues of the Gulf of Mirabello.
What’s hot? A private sun terrace with luxury recliners around your own seawater swimming pool. A shady patio with day beds to ensure you slip into the Mediterranean lifestyle. Gardens planted with bougainvillea, jasmine, roses, olive and lemon groves, at the end of which steps lead down to a rocky swimming cove. Sliding glass doors opening into a stylish, modern interior – think spacious bedrooms, marble bathrooms and modern, open-plan kitchen and lounge areas. A maid visits daily and a butler brings meals on request.
What’s on the doorstep? Minutes away on foot is a five-star hotel with swanky restaurants and a plethora of water sports. You can also visit the museums, palaces and churches of local Cretan villages, cross the bay to the island reserve of Kri-Kri and bathe on the world-renowned beaches of Elafonissos and Falasserna.
Basics: 6 villas, each sleeping 5 adults + 1 child (breakfast included; other meals on request)
Cost: From €450 per day
POGGIO DIVINIO, Grosseto, Tuscany
Amidst the vineyards of Tuscany’s Maremma wine region, this restored farmhouse is a place where La Dolce Vita is served alongside pure panache.
What’s hot? Gazing out from the hilltop over 140 acres of rolling vines, olive groves and woodland, guests can sample the finest vintages, cool off in the pool and enjoy a relaxed pace of life under the Tuscan sun. Wood and stone features set the tone of the rustic interior, where sumptuous mod cons have been subtly incorporated.
What’s on the doorstep? It’s a 25-minute drive to the coast, or guests can head into the hills on foot or on a two-wheeled adventure.
Basics: Sleeps up to 10 (self catering or fully catered with a private chef)
Cost: From €6000 - €8000 per week (breakfast and chef included; heating and air-conditioning not included)
COGNAC CHATEAU, Cognac, France
An elegant chateau situated in one of the sunniest regions in France
What’s hot? Tune into the peaceful ambience and chill out – be it in the outdoor pool, in a shady spot in the gardens or snuggled into a soft robe in the sanctuary of a luxurious bedroom. Amidst a soothing backdrop of cool, white walls, limestone tiles and original fireplaces, enjoy the additional treats of massages on tap or a glass of local Pineau as the sun goes down. You can even choose to leave the cooking in the hands of your hosts, who will conjure up a four-course banquet served under vintage candelabras or an alfresco feast to be enjoyed under the lime tree.
What’s on the doorstep? The sunny and serene land of Poitou-Charentes, with its sandy beaches, pine forests, romantic marshlands, Romanesque churches and cognac vineyards.
Basics: Sleeps up to 8 (self-catered with a chef available)
Cost: From £2,650 (€3,030) per week. For a larger group, the gite, sleeping 4, is available at an additional cost.
THE WHITE HOUSE, Essaouira, Morocco
Bag the best of Morocco in this traditional riad at the heart of a bustling medina, yet just minutes on foot from Essaouira’s vast sandy beach.
What’s hot? With its ancient sandstone columns, narrow rooms, white walls and thuya wood ceiling, your accommodation oozes with the features of a classic riad, but one that has been decked out in cool, retro-chic style. There’s a library to chill out in and a fire to snuggle up by, whilst out on the terrace you can swing on the basket chair, dine alfresco and soak up the sights and sounds of the souk.
What’s on the doorstep? Ride a camel along the beach in true Moorish style, try windsurfing or kitesurfing, dine in one of the fabulous restaurants tucked away in the medina, or simply wander barefoot along the shore.
Basics: Sleeps up to 8 (self-catering with evening meals available)
Cost: From £1,200 per week (based on 4 guests), or from £2,400 (based on 8 guests)
SON MERCADAL, Mallorca, Spain
An authentic Spanish finca offering a tranquil ambience far from the beach crowds
What’s hot? Sink into the relaxing Mediterranean lifestyle and tuck into local Majorcan cuisine made with ingredients fresh from the estate. Rustic farmhouse charm is decked out in a fusion of antique style and modern creature comforts, whilst outside awaits lush gardens, horses and a sun terrace beside an azure swimming pool.
What’s on the doorstep? Saddle up and explore beyond the woodland of your 7-hectare estate by horseback or by bike, or head to the beaches and the natural park of Isola di Cabrera.
Basics: Sleeps 2-17 (B&B basis)
Cost: From €105 per room (double occupancy), €85 (single occupancy), €30 (children)
LE MACASSAR, Corbie, France
Sink into the elegant Continental ambience of a private art deco mansion that offers all the luxuries of a boutique hotel.
What’s hot? Bag the 1920’s art deco suite with its original ash and maple furniture, separate living room with a carved stone fireplace and huge black marble bathroom with a whirlpool. Each of the five bedrooms guarantees a sanctuary of relaxation and pampering, whilst outdoors you can lap up the last of the summer with breakfast al fresco or a glass of fine French wine on the terrace.
What’s on the doorstep? This is a place to immerse yourself in the sights and culture of Northern France: visit Nôtre Dame Cathedral and beautiful churches, and sample fine wines and regional cuisine.
Basics: Sleeps up to 10 (B&B basis)
Cost: From €160 per room
THE HOLLYWOOD BEACH HOUSE, Tangier, Morocco
This glam art deco beach house is perfect for kicking back to enjoy a sun-filled summer break
What’s hot? From the beautifully manicured Mediterranean-style garden that nudges the golden beach front to an evening swim in your private pool followed by falling asleep to the sound of the waves, you’ll return refreshed from a stay at this sumptuous pad.
What’s on the doorstep? If you tire of the beach head to the frenzy of the medinas where a day of haggling will have you craving the cool interiors of your beach pad. If shopping isn’t your scene, enjoy adrenalin fuelled quad biking or simply take it all in atop a camel.
Basics: Sleeps up to 8, with catering available by arrangement
Cost: From £3750 weekly
BOOMERANG BEACH HOUSE, Queensland, Australia
Overhanging the ocean, this stunning eco-design sea view villa is the perfect ultra-modern, super-indulgent pad on Australia’s sunshine coast
What’s hot? There’s a private beach, 30-metre swimming pool and tennis court that the property shares with just three other villas. From the open plan minimalist interiors to decking that literally overhangs the ocean, for al fresco dining with a wow factor.
What’s on the doorstep? You won’t want to leave your contemporary haven, instead indulge in onsite massages and spa treatments. Take a boat trip to Lady Musgrave Island, a coral lagoon where you can snorkel, swim with sea turtles or go diving (just an hour away by catamaran)
Basics: Sleeping 14 guests on a self-catered basis
Cost: £3500 weekly
For more information please contact Sarah Milligan
Tel: +44(0)1637 881183