Sweeping views of the Tuscan countryside, lazy afternoons spent poolside, al fresco dining… what’s not to love about staying in an Italian villa? It gives you space to make yourself at home in the charming location of your choice, with little touches of luxury as an added bonus. Here are a few tips to keep in mind when you’re planning the perfect villa getaway.

Narrow down your location.

The first order of business is to figure out what region to stay in. Do you prefer an urban getaway or a quiet lakeside retreat? Tuscany is a particularly popular choice, famed for its verdant vineyards and rustic charm. Coastal villas also tend to be top choices, near seaside towns like Portofino. You can take our suggestions for must-visit places in Italy, or create your own dream vacation based on your own interests.

6 Tips for Booking the Perfect Italian Villa

Find out what’s included in the cost.

Once you’ve settled on a location the next step is to start comparing prices to find a villa that suits your budget. However, be sure to factor in hidden fees when comparing quotes. For example, some villas may charge you extra for features like air conditioning, daily housekeeping or wood for the fireplace. Local tourist taxes will also inflate the initial quote, as these must often be paid onsite and in cash.

6 Tips for Booking the Perfect Italian Villa

Look for extra services.

While you may pay extra for luxuries like air conditioning, there are other services and amenities that can distinguish one villa from another. Look for recreational facilities like a spa area with a hot tub, a swimming pool, or an onsite chef. Some villas might include features associated with hotels, like concierge services and rental bikes. These are the little things that can make your stay more memorable.

6 Tips for Booking the Perfect Italian Villa

Find out about privacy.

When most of us picture an Italian villa, a grand, stately building comes to mind. Yet the term can be used to apply to many different types of standalone buildings, and some rentals are actually apartments housed inside a larger villa. If you’re interested in a more secluded getaway, be sure that your villa stands alone and ask about the proximity of neighbours or onsite staff. You can click here to discover villas in Italy that span all shapes and sizes, ensuring the perfect getaway.

6 Tips for Booking the Perfect Italian Villa

Choose a villa with a contact or caretaker.

Even if you prefer to enjoy peace and privacy, make sure your villa comes with an emergency contact. While in most cases you won’t need to use it, it’s helpful to have a go-to person to help if there are any technical or plumbing issues during your stay.

6 Tips for Booking the Perfect Italian Villa

Read reviews before booking.

Finally, read reviews from other travellers when you use booking sites. They’ll give you a more accurate idea of what to expect, whether it’s spotty internet service or a dirty swimming pool area. On the flip side, you’ll also gain handy hints or learn about the hidden charms of villas that may not look as enticing on paper. Compare all of these reviews and features to find the best fit for your needs.

6 Tips for Booking the Perfect Italian Villaitaly