Affordable Travel Guide to Villas

An Atmosphere of Fantasy, Fully Grounded

Villas

Villas are, for most of us, founded on the images we find in books like A Year in Provence, by Peter Mayle, or films like Under the Tuscan Sun. In fact, most (but not all) villa-style accommodations are in southern Europe, specifically France and Italy. But other parts of the globe have come to realize the romance and popularity of a villa, purpose-building them for vacationers, especially in settings reminiscent of the classic locales in Europe.

Villas tend to be erected in a specific design vernacular, but they are as varied and colorful as the flowerbeds that surround them. Guests can either rent an entire villa and occupy it themselves, with family or friends, or they can stay at a villa and rent a room (some with privates baths) from the resident family. Other villas, still, play host to some of the offerings we have in our Creative Travel section, such as culinary travel, visual arts classes, writing retreats and music lessons.

Modern villas, no matter how ancient the actual structures may be, are a seamless combination of old rustic and contemporary luxury. The more updated the services, the higher the cost to rent or stay, generally speaking. The price is also affected by the location; a Tuscan villa within a half an hour of Firenza (Florence) will be listed at a higher rate than one in the countryside a good distance from Genoa or Livorno, which lie on the coast. Villas in idyllic locations in the south of France, close to popular, busy resort destinations like St. Tropez, Cannes or Monaco, will be priced accordingly.

The essence of a villa-style accommodation is the indoor/outdoor transition. It

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