Archive for the ‘Travel’ Category

Where the rich and famous spend their time in Europe

Monday, July 8th, 2019

PLAYGROUNDS OF THE RICH AND FAMOUS IN EUROPE

Europe is a continent that has it all; cooling Mediterranean breezes, world-class ski resorts, luxury villa rentals, beautiful golden beaches, endless marinas for yachts and party islands renowned the world over.

Known for their five-star lifestyle, the rich and famous have exquisite taste when it comes to a well-deserved vacation. Inspired by their favourite European destinations, we’ve compiled a billionaire bucket-list that is simply unmissable!

Saint Tropez, France

From Kate Moss and Leonardo di Caprio, to Princess Charlene and Prince Albert of Monaco, you never know who you might bump in to in Saint Tropez.

This French coastal town is known for its decadent lifestyle, boutique shops and extravagant parties. If you don’t own a countryside mansion here, the next best thing is to rent a luxury villa in St Tropez, or do like Simon Cowell and board your private $73 million yacht!

Oozing with glamour and irresistible old-world charm, Villa Anastasia is the perfect hideaway, hidden in the charming hills of Ramatuelle (also home to the world-famous Pampelonne beach). Closer to the action Villa Leslie serves up the right amount of coastal charm and privacy, in this highly desirable eight-bedroom property dangling above Cannes.

The Alps, France

While America has Aspen, Europe has the Alps. Offering great conditions for ski and snow during the winter months, Courchevel is known to be a billionaire’s ski row, also dubbed ‘Saint Tropez on Snow’!

And it’s easy to see why. Catering to high rollers, there’s no less than eight Michelin star restaurants in the area and plenty of mountain bars for a touch of Apres Ski. It’s impressive ski resort ‘Les Trois Vallées’ is one of the best in the world, where you’re no-one without a Gucci onesie – take note!

Complete your stay in vacation home Villa Layla which recently underwent a €1,000,000 renovation. With breath-taking views over the Dent du Villard, there’s a lot to take in, literally!

Ibiza

Up the tempo and head to the magical island of Ibiza, to see how the other half live. Aside from its well-publicised clubbing scene, Ibiza rentals are some of the most impressive you will find in Europe. It’s one of the many reasons it attracts an elite crowd, including; Cristiano Ronaldo, Paris Hilton and David Guetta who all own luxury villas here.

Complete the playboy lifestyle and stay a Villa Rochelle which was named the most “luxurious and exclusive villa” on the white isle by Conde Nast Traveller. With its supersize clifftop pool, and eight en-suite bedrooms split across four floors, it’s another league of luxury.

Mallorca

The largest of the Balearic Islands, Mallorca is still small with just 870,000 people living here. Yet its appeal is wide reaching – popular with CEOs and celebrities alike who moor up to its marina and bathe in its sun-kissed beaches.

Enjoyed by food and wine lovers, as well as those who appreciate the great outdoors, there’s plenty to see and do here, or simply relax and do nothing at all. There’s lots of places to discover by foot, bike and of course – superyacht!

Hollywood royalty (Jennifer Aniston, Michael Douglas) and traditional royalty (King Juan Carlos) have all been known to visit, staying in some of the top vacation homes on the island.

If you can’t beat them, the only way is to join them! A stay at Villa Pedra is everything and more that luxury dwelling should be, set in a renovated estate in tranquil surroundings.

But like all things on this island, you’re never too far from the neighboring village, and is stunning beach, making this a great choice for a five-star getaway.

Global Luxury Villas offer luxury villas in a selection of leading destinations around the world.

LUXURY TRAVEL DESTINATIONS FOR WINE LOVERS

Friday, June 21st, 2019

Some destinations need to be tasted to be believed! France, Italy, Greece and Costa Rica, are just some countries high on the list of any self-respecting foodie and wine lover. Yet finding the right luxury villa to rent can in itself be a challenge.

With many of these vineyard retreats hidden in valleys, or nestled deep in the countryside, it can be a challenge to find an accessible destination to visit. That’s why we’ve compiled our list of top destinations for wine lovers, complete with luxury vacation homes within the neighboring vicinity.

Blissful Bordeaux

Arguably, France should be visited at least once if you’re serious about wine. There’s endless regions to choose from, but Bordeaux stands out as one of the most appealing, with plenty of high quality vacation rentals to enjoy.

Blessed with the perfect conditions for flourishing vineyards and with extensive sprawling grounds, the temperate climate of Bordeaux is globally acclaimed for its wine making. Here over 90% of the produce is red wine, made with Merlot and Cabernet, attracting visitors from far afield, any time of year.

The charming coastal town of Arcachon makes the perfect stop-over point for visiting; combining both the local beach, and with links to the great French countryside for wine tasting.

For a truly French experience, a country estate is a prerequisite! With eight generously-sized bedrooms, Villa Tatianna offers a vast luxury vacation home in its chateau-style estate. It’s a wonderful base for exploring the region, without being limited to just one vineyard. Plus, its many facilities make it ideal for larger groups and families too.

Iconic Italy

The Amalfi Coast is home to sweeping views, world-class cuisine, and Villa Adele. Perched on Sorrento’s rugged hills, many come here for a romantic escape and appreciation of its outstanding local cuisine. With local Michelin star restaurants on your doorstep, you may never want to step outside the village. The luxury vacation home is also equipped with everything you could desire for a five-star stay. But if you do venture out, there’s a world of wineries awaiting your arrival; including the renowned Winery De Angelis, half an hour away by car.

For a traditional experience, the coastal village of Monte Argentario in Tuscany is home to Villa Larissa. Appealing to large groups, this seven-bedroom luxury villa rental has its own fully-equipped kitchen for dishing up locally sourced dishes. Hanging off the Italian coast, it looks and feels like an island in itself, however it’s perfectly located for trips to nearby wineries, within easy reach.

Glorious Greece

Mykonos is a lively place for those that love delicious food and drink, with beach life thrown in for good measure! Nonetheless, this small Greek island, does produce a small amount of vino, using native Greek grapes ‘assyrtico’ that offer a rich nutty flavor.

Staying at Villa Kendra you can have it all; glorious sunshine and a pool to dip in to, as well as a 10-minute drive to the ‘Ecologically Vineyard and Winery of Mykonos’.

Charming Costa Rica

While it might be better known for coffee, Costa Rica’s wine region is well worth a visit. Pair this with a stay at Villa Kamala for a truly memorable experience. Set in paradise, this luxury vacation home offers ten-bedrooms in its world-class eco-lodge. Committed to wellbeing, the pioneering design utilizes the natural terrain, to create a zen-like space. There’s plenty of local vineyards to discover, although you’ll need a car to visit them all. Neighbouring Finca Vidor, tends to be very popular with tourists, and much like Villa Kamala, should not be missed!

Global Luxury Villas offer luxury villas in a selection of leading destinations around the world.

Must Visit Destinations For Seafood Lovers

Thursday, May 23rd, 2019
Luxury Villa Rental for Seafood Lovers

If you like your swordfish with a side of calamari, if you know your ‘pacific’ from your ‘Kumamoto’ oyster, and if you can crack a lobster claw in less than 30 seconds, you may well be a ‘sea-foodie’!

Revered by foodies the world over, many even chose their luxury villa rental based on kitchen facilities and private dock, in order to cook and catch – such is their love of fresh seafood.

From Saint Barth to Saint Tropez and Ibiza rentals, there may be oceans between them, but there’s plenty of fish in the sea, so to speak. Here’s our top destinations for seafood lovers…

Villa Emily

Ibiza

Surrounded by perfectly turquoise waters, there’s no shortage of locally caught fish on this idyllic island.

By day, Nikki Beach in Santa Eulalia delivers mouth-watering lobster tacos and steamed Ibiza prawns, offset to a pumping soundtrack and fun crowd! It’s not alone, the legendary Blue Marlin on the beach prides itself on serving some of the best sushi in the land.

Meanwhile, for a more authentic experience, head to the Old Town after dark; with its interwoven cobbled streets and hidden cove of restaurants, there’s no better place for a local paella.

Ibiza luxury rentals should be booked in advance, and nearby Villa Emily is one of the best positioned to all the nightlife and excellent restaurants in the area.

Villa Contenta

Miami

Miami is a haven for foodies, everything can be found here; Asian fusion, Cuban, Spanish, Mediterranean and more.

Surrounded by a bay and the ocean, its seafood scene is hard to miss. Many who come here try the grouper sandwich at local stalwart Garcias. Meanwhile, sushi lovers should head to Japanese restaurant ‘Naoe’ which is Michelin-starred. Not to be missed, Area 31 downtown leads the way in responsibly sourced fish with a Spanish twist.

A popular Miami villa rental to stay in close to these restaurants is Villa Siri. Or, for those that feel more adventurous, Villa Contenta boasts its own private dock, inviting you to spend the day flinging your hook into the great Atlantic Ocean. Its state-of-the-art kitchen is the perfect place for your private chef to rustle up your catch of the day!

Villa Maya

Saint-Barth

Surrounded by tranquil blue waters, this Caribbean gem is known for its creole cuisine and plenty of fresh fish. For those that love beach life with unrivaled luxury, Saint-Barths has it all.

Stay at St Barths luxury rental Villa Maya for good links to all the best restaurants, with the added benefit of its secluded hillside position. Dine under the stars at nearby Tamarin, one of the best restaurants on the island for seafood lovers, with a dedicated menu offering locally sourced Mahi Mahi, wild shrimp and tuna.

It can only be topped by nearby Eden Rock, known for its celebrity clientele and world-renowned chef Jean-Georges.

Villa Brigitte

St. Tropez

With an endless list of five-star eateries, Michelin-star restaurants and local cafes serving outstanding cuisine, St Tropez is a gastronomical delight.

This once sleepy fishing village, still serves up delightful dishes, such as fish soup – perfect with a glass of local rose. For something quick and easy, the port has no end of diners, crafting stunning dishes from local fishing boats. For something more refined, Le Girelier is known for its lobster, crab and oyster platters.

The French pride themselves on rustic home cooking, and the sleek open plan kitchen at Villa Brigitte alone makes it a top luxury villa for rent in St Tropez.

Finally, if you left your superyacht at home, why not hire a private charter for the afternoon and enjoy a touch of big-game fishing, with the locals!

Villazzo offers a wide selection of luxury house rentals for a five-star get-away. With outstanding customer service and an unrivaled portfolio of properties, you’re guaranteed an unforgettable stay.

GREAT LUXURY ESCAPES FOR THE KIDS WINTER BREAK IN EUROPE AND USA

Wednesday, November 21st, 2018

It’s that time of the year again when thoughts turn to holidays with the family. When it comes to high-end escapes, a luxury home rental is essential to complete your dream vacation. Providing a home away from home, there’s no better way to indulge the family than with a five-star residence.

Whether you’re looking to the warm shores of America, cozy cabins of France, or tranquil settings of Tuscany, you’re sure to find inspiration in our exclusive pick of luxury vacation rentals.

Compiled with the forthcoming winter break in mind, here’s four dreamy destinations for total pampering…

Hello Europe!

Europe really lends itself to the winter season, with plenty of culture to enjoy, as well as world-class ski resorts.

With it being low season, Tuscany in winter is a good time to come. Costs are lower and there’s fewer crowds, making it handy for visiting attractions like Florence Cathedral and the Leaning Tower of Pisa. Visit in February and you’ll be able to enjoy festival season, which the whole region gets involved in.

Villa Regina

Complete your stay with a luxury home rental such as Villa Regina. Nestled in the historic region of Arezzo, there’s great museums and wonderful architecture on your doorstep, and Florence is only an hour away by car.

While Tuscany also has its fair share of mountains for snow and ski (check out the Pistoia province), it’s the French Alps that ski aficionados flock to.

Villa Talia

Tucked away in the French ski resort of Val Thorens, Villa Talia is on the doorstep of some of the best ski runs. And when it’s time to cool down (or heat up), its private sauna, gymnasium and swimming pool are always a hit with younger ones. This hard-to-beat family-friendly luxury house rental spans 12,900 sq ft with eight cozy bedrooms for when it’s time to retire.

Get Away to USA

America has it all, and there’s no better time for families to visit than winter. At the end of November, the annual tradition of Thanksgiving makes it a wonderful time to come, plus there’s the Black Friday sales too!

Villa Ola

Winter is always warm in Miami, and the kids will love the many outdoor activities and water sports on offer. Hire a luxury villa in Miami beach, for the perfect base to explore the city. At Villa Ola you’re on the right side of Miami beach to access its many restaurants, bars and renowned night life, without being in the thick of it.

Villa Trina

For complete luxury and escapism with the family Villa Trina in the stunning Turks & Caicos islands is a firm favourite. Here you can completely relax and unwind in this huge mansion, right on the golden shores of Long Bay Beach. Complete with your own butler, outdoor movie theater, two pools and private tennis courts – it’s hard not to feel spoilt, but that’s what holidays are all about – right!?

So, pack your bags, book time off work and gather the kids, for an unmissable break to one of our stunning winter destinations.

For the best value luxury vacation rentals, visit Global Luxury Villas. With a wide selection of high-end properties including concierge services, you’re guaranteed a memorable stay.

HOW TO EXPERIENCE THE PERFECT ASPEN CHRISTMAS THIS YEAR

Wednesday, November 14th, 2018
Villazzo Aspen

If you promise yourself every year that you’ll go away for the holidays, or if you dream of a white Christmas, then now’s the right time to start booking your Aspen villa rental.

With its famous white washed mountains, brilliant blue skies and world-famous snow and ski facilities, there’s no better destination for family fun than Aspen, Colorado.

The Rocky Mountains provide the perfect backdrop for this magical winter wonderland that welcome an influx of visitors around this time of year. To make your stay extra magical, here’s a few pointers for achieving a five-star get-away.

Villa Marylou

Quality Time

The perfect way to spend your Christmas in Aspen is with family and loved ones. Aspen luxury vacation rentals offer the perfect base for spending time together. Villa Marylou is one of the most sought-after spots, adjacent to the Red Mountain and minutes away from the slopes. This sprawling chalet offers seven en-suite bedrooms, and rejuvenating facilities including; a gym, steam room and indoor Jacuzzi. If you want to spend quality family time in undisturbed settings, look no further.

Villa Lynne

Eat, Drink, Be Merry!

If Christmas is synonymous with one thing, it’s indulging in great food and drink. Base yourself in the heart of Aspen to make the most of the area. This buzzling destination lives up to its winter reputation as a vibrant fun place. Stay at luxury house rental Villa Lynne to be within walking distance of all the top restaurants and venues, including Belly Up – the famous live music venue in the area.

Villa Justine

Peace and Quiet

One of the great reasons to come to Aspen is for the change of scenery. With scenic walks and desolate mountains to explore, there’s nothing more calming than its serene landscape. For the ultimate in escapism, stay at luxury Aspen rental Villa Justine housed in the remote hilltops for complete exclusivity. With wood-burning fireplaces, great dining facilities (indoors and out), and luxuriously designed bedrooms, it’s the perfect place for solitude and privacy.

Villa Malia

Ski for Yourself!

If there’s one thing a Christmas in Aspen demands, it’s a festive family ski! When it comes to Aspen luxury rentals, none are better positioned than Villa Malia for making the most of the local slopes. This six-bedroom alpine villa offers wistful views of the Red Mountain ski resort, as well as a host of great facilities, including your own basketball court and an indoor Jacuzzi.

Villa Molly

Cozy Fireplaces

One of the great joys of Aspen is coming home to a cozy fireplace and enjoying a hot mug of something warming. Leave the busy world behind you at Villa Molly in this secluded romantic Aspen luxury rental. This six-bedroom estate is set across three acres with every modern touch thought of. There’s plenty of space to entertain, both indoors and out (with its own hot tub) as well as boasting some of the most beautiful views across the Aspen mountains.

For an unforgettable Christmas, Villazzo offers a wide selection of luxury villas in Aspen to complete your stay. With outstanding customer service and an unrivaled portfolio of properties, you’re guaranteed a five-star break.

THE BEST FRENCH SKI RESORTS FOR LUXURY

Thursday, November 1st, 2018
French Alps

France is a great destination to visit any time of year, but particularly in winter. With beautiful white-washed picturesque villages, ski-season in full bloom and plenty of outdoor activities to explore, it’s time to pack your bags and get ready for a luxury home rental like no other.

Ideal for families, fun with friends and conduce for romance, it’s easy to see why more than 120 million people flock to the French Alps every year.

To help you decide which resort is best for you, our team of travel experts have hand-picked the best villa vacation rentals throughout top French ski resorts Courchevel and Val Thorens. All you have to do is get that ski pass and you’re off!

Villa Paige

For Fun with Friends

Ski by day, play by night – that’s how guests in the upbeat resort of Courchevel 1850 like to roll! Situated in the heart of town, Villa Paige is a modern four-bedroom property with everything on its doorstep. A top ski resort in reach (and ski school), as well as all the best bars, restaurants and high-end shops at your disposal make this destination great for friends and groups to enjoy. The villa also benefits from a daily maid, to help maintain the comfort of your stay.

Villa Rayna

Chic Chalet for Large Groups

Further away in a quieter spot of Courchevel 1850, lies Villa Rayna. Situated in the ultimate skier’s playground, there couldn’t be a more exclusive destination for a five-star ski experience. This Luxury villa rental can sleep up to 15 guests and is decorated to the highest standard with finishing touches to dazzle. This includes its own private lift, personal chef, personal driver and underground spa and fitness lounge complete with steam room and Turkish sauna. It’s pièce de résistance however is its indoor swimming pool, ideal for post-ski recovery.

Villa Layla

Uninterrupted Beauty

Slightly off the beaten track in Bellecôte, above the bustle of Courchevel 1850, the Nogentil region is one of great natural beauty. Here you can enjoy the majestic surroundings with total escape, but still only 50m from the ski slopes. Luxury villa rentals in the area don’t come better than Villa Layla – a distinguished property that can sleep large groups of up to 14 guests. Recently undergoing a million-euro renovation, it boasts modern touches while retaining its rustic wood-cabin charm. After a hard day on the slopes, sit back and enjoy time out in the private hone theater, game room, indoor swimming pool or spa, or just snuggle up in front of its fireplace and make the most of the stunning surroundings.

Villa Talia

Jet-set Ski-set

The enchanting Alpine resort of Val Thorens is one of the highest in Europe. As such, it’s a prime spot for great powder throughout the winter season (November through May), attracting serious winter sports enthusiasts. But it’s equally as accommodating to newbies, with a terrain to suit every level. And since the resort is purpose-built, it has no shortage of all the essentials, including a three Michelin star restaurant, making this a magical place to stay.

A luxury home rental is the only way to visit and Villa Talia is one of best properties for larger groups. Its five suites accommodate up to 15 guests, treated to charming views across the resort. There’s a bespoke activity room for kids with plenty of entertainment, along with two cinemas, a whirlpool tub, sauna and gym for bigger kids! Plus, there’s a private chef, beautician and masseur on hand to cater to your every whim.

For the best value luxury vacation rentals, visit Global Luxury Villas. With a wide selection of high-end properties including concierge services, you’re guaranteed a memorable stay.

MOUNTAIN VERSUS BEACH – WHICH ONE’S FOR YOU?

Wednesday, October 24th, 2018
Mountain vs Beach

From the fresh alpine air to warm sunshine shores, from the highest peaks to hidden beaches. It can be hard to choose between mountain or beach, winter or warmth, ski or swim.

Which is why our travel experts have compiled a list of the most desirable luxury vacation rentals around the world. Inspired by golden shores, rugged clifftops and mountainous ranges, there’s a destination for everyone in this contrasting list of unbeatable properties.

Magnificent Mountains

If you’re looking to change your scenery completely with outdoor adventure and total escapism, there’s no better refuge than the mountains. Calm and crisp, high and mighty, there’s something inviting about the highest peaks that beckons traveler’s year after year. Whether it’s for adventure travel, getting back to nature or just getting away, there’s many reasons why a mountain break could be the right choice.

Villa Justine
With high hilltop views, romantic wood burning fireplaces and complete isolation, head to Villa Justine in Aspen. This six-bedroom home offers complete privacy in the lap of luxury with all modern comforts, including; a wet bar, built-in barbecue grill and fire pit to wow guests. This world-famous American destination has some of the best ski runs in the world.

Villa Rayna
Conversely, if you’re looking for mountain fun in the thick of it, Villa Rayna in the popular French ski resort of Courchevel is a great spot. Up to 15 guests can stay in this magnificent chalet, perfectly placed for all the ski action, as well as local entertainment and dining options nearby. But with your own private chef, swimming pool, sauna and steam room, you’ll probably never want to leave your luxury vacation home.

Blissful Beaches

If you’re more in tune with the gentle sounds of crashing waves and sand between your toes, then a beach holiday may be more suited to you. There’s certainly no end of choice when it comes to white sands and turquoise waters – the challenge is finding somewhere unspoiled and undiscovered.

Villa Trina
If total pampering and pristine beaches is your thing, then say hello to the Turks & Caicos islands! With impossibly blue waters and endless stretches of golden sand, it offers the ultimate beach break. In Long Bay, the breath-taking mansion of Villa Trina is a stand-out property spanning 10,000sq feet. It features seven impeccably designed bedrooms, an outdoor movie theater with fire pit, hot tub, no less than two private pools, a tennis court and of a course a butler!

Villa Denise
Perhaps you’re looking for a tranquilly and beach life, with all the amenities of modern living nearby? Then the private residence of Villa Denise in Miami Beach offers a stunning luxury vacation home to unwind in. Expect total tranquilly and escape in this elegant property on the elite Sunset Island. Its heated pool and luscious gardens provide the perfect backdrop to a restful stay.

Villa Estelle
But if you can’t decide where to go, why not have it all?! High in the hilltops of St Barth, Villa Estelle perches on a mountain cliff, minutes from the famous Eden Rock and overlooking the beautiful ‘Baie de St Jean’. A luxurious retreat with six bedrooms for guests, complete with private pool and sweeping views, it delivers all the magic of the mountains with a ‘beach within reach’ for the complete package!

Whether you’re seeking magnificent mountains or beautiful beaches, Global Luxury Villas offers unrivaled luxury in some of the most desirable locations in the world.

HOW TO ACHIEVE THE PERFECT CHILL IN ST BARTH

Saturday, October 20th, 2018
St Barth

A jewel in the ever-gleaming turquoise Caribbean shores, St Barth is a truly exceptional island that should be visited at least once in a lifetime. And staying in a St Barth luxury villa is the only way to visit, for a truly memorable trip.

A popular destination all-year round, visitors come here for the tranquility, unspoiled natural beauty, world-class villas of St Barth and a warm Caribbean welcome. It’s the go-to destination for total relaxation and chill, with stylish boutique dwellings to match.

If in any doubt of its restorative qualities, or you need tempting any further, read on…

Beach Life

There are 14 pristine beaches on St Barth which are never crowded, even in peak season. These are places of sanctuary and chill, where impossibly white sands meet delightfully blue waters. When in search of total relaxation, any one of its five-star beaches lend themselves perfectly to a touch of calm and serenity.

Although Colombier Beach is the most popular, Saline beach is a favorite with locals, for its laid-back style. Here you can enjoy postcard-perfect views, brilliant white stretches of beach and a local rum punch, while enjoying the blissful weather.

Villa Estelle
For a beach within reach and stunning coastal views from every angle, Villa Estelle is made for serenity and seclusion. This six bedroom St Barth vacation rental enjoys a privileged rooftop position, with a delightfully secluded pool looking out to the sea.

Watch the World Go By

This is an island where you can sit back and watch the world go by. For total chill, the Pink Parrot Beach Bar at St. Jean Beach provides a fabulous backdrop to unwind with a good book in one hand, glass of something bubbly in the other!

Villa Liliana
But for complete decadence, Villa Liliana is the place to kick back with a cocktail from your private bar, best enjoyed on your very own luxurious sun deck. Here you can enjoy front facing beach views, sailing boats and crashing waves. If that wasn’t enough, its blissful pool invites you in for cocktails at sunset, or indeed any time of day. At Villa Liliana, it’s hard to do anything but relax!

Sail Away

There’s nothing more calming and restorative than the gentle lapping of waves. Luckily, you’re in the right place for every kind of water sport, or transport vessel imaginable! Head over to Gustavia Harbour for boat hire and catamaran tours of the island, it’s what St Barth life is all about!

Villa Violet
Position yourself in the ideal place for exploring the island by water. Not too far away, Villa Violet is situated in the west of the island, close to the famous harbor. This delightful St Barth luxury villa has room for up to 10 guests, including a semi-heated infinity pool hanging off the cliff edge. There can be no better spot on the island to watch the world sail by, while reconnecting with nature. It’s what luxury relaxing holidays are all about.

So, there you have it, three good reasons to head to St Barth for the ultimate chilled and chic holiday.

For an unforgettable vacation, Villazzo offers a wide selection of St Barth’s luxury villas to complete your stay. With outstanding customer service and an unrivaled portfolio of properties, you’re guaranteed a five-star break.

THE INTERVIEW SERIES:
CHRISTIAN JAGODZINSKI – CEO, VILLAZZO

Wednesday, October 10th, 2018
Christian

In our latest interview series, we’re delighted to provide a rare glimpse into the world of Christian Jagodzinski, founder of Villazzo and widely celebrated tech entrepreneur.

An innovator ahead of his time, Jagodzinski made a name for himself in his early twenties launching ‘Telebook’ – Germany’s first fully automated online retailer. The business was snapped up by Amazon and became Amazon Germany. After working as a Director for Amazon for a while, realizing a need to fulfil his entrepreneurial spirit, Christian took an extended sabbatical to travel the world. It was during this time he discovered an untapped niche in the market; premium luxury villas with all the trappings of five-star hotels, for the ultimate vacation. Bringing his passion for luxury travel together with his technical prowess, Villazzo was born.

Q: You grew up in Germany and now live in Miami where Villazzo is based. This isn’t your typical Silicon Valley start-up, tell us a bit about how you came to reside in Florida?

I’ve always loved Florida, especially Miami Beach. The climate is perfect, it’s a cosmopolitan city with an international vibe and ‘happening’ buzz. It feels like a small resort town with a big city in its backyard! We used to have a small office here already in the late 1990s, long before it became the big international destination it is today. All our workers loved it and still do.

Wherever you stay on South Beach, or any of its islands, you’re only ever minutes away from the water, the hottest restaurants, the beach and shops, as well as just 15 minutes from a major international airport hub. Tell me any other place in the world that has the same great set up?

Q: Sixteen years’ on since it launched and Villazzo is still going strong. How do you keep up with an ever-changing online and travel landscape?

We remain true to our core values that we launched with in 2002. These are to provide a five-star hotel service and management for select top-of-the-line vacation villas.
The business was borne out of my personal frustrations renting high end villas. The service lacked any professionalism, it was just people ‘brokering a deal’ forgetting the crucial human touch required to create a memorable vacation.

Unfortunately, this hasn’t improved with the abundance of online villa booking sites, driven by price while compromising customer service. I fear that we have come to see the same cut-throat price competition in the villa market as we have in the airline industry, where customers are willing to give up luggage rather than pay $25 extra – it’s a short-sighted approach.

You only have to look at the excellent service First-Class customers are given, to understand their loyalty to an airline. Despite fierce competition, premium flyers remain loyal to the provider they receive the best service from. That’s really our approach at Villazzo too. We deliver a First-Class experience to our customers (when booking online or with other agents), and the price difference is well worth it.

Q: Tell me a bit about your day-to-day involvement in Villazzo and what your ‘job’ involves?

At the start, I was very hands-on managing all the day-to-day operations, greeting clients and hand-picking the villas myself. I realized that in order to focus my efforts and expand the business, I needed to grow them team. Last year I was delighted to appoint Hanna Talaie as General Manager, who oversees everything now. I still care passionately about the business and work hard to uphold our high standards, so remain involved at a strategic level in my new role as Chairman.

Q: And what is the most challenging part of your job?

Two things come to mind.

First of all, the technical side (website, app, client service systems) has become increasingly important in recent years. While I have a tech background, it remains a challenge to find good developers that can continue to pioneer.

We invest a lot in new properties, this includes educating home owners on ‘the Villazzo approach’ to client and property management. It’s a skill we’ve honed over the past 16 years, which ultimately leads to a better experience for home owners and guests alike.

Q: Villazzo lists Beyonce and Jay-Z, Madonna and Cristiano Ronaldo among its clients, is it just for the super wealthy?

Villazzo-serviced villas do attract an elite customer, with the $5,000+ a night price tag they come with. Acknowledging this, we recently launched our sister company Global Luxury Villas where prices are much lower, and you have a ‘concierge’ service’ instead of a ‘VillaHotel’ service. This is sufficient for a range of clients, and still much better value than a pure online booking site.

Q: What makes Villazzo stand-out from a five-star hotel, or another luxury villa rental company?

We are completely unique. There is no other villa company in the world that offers the level of care and detail that we do. From our carefully curated list of villas and ‘VillaHotel Transformation’ process, to our dedicated service training. We have a reputation for offering the best properties with unrivalled customer service.

While there are many outstanding hotels in the world, none of them can offer the sanctuary, space and privacy or our large estates at Villazzo.

Q: What’s the most unusual request you’ve had to fulfill from a client!?

This is one of the great parts of the job, where you can really make a difference to someone’s stay.

We’ve emptied and refilled a 140ft pool (it took six days!) to ensure it was untouched. We furnished a complete villa with brand new mattresses costing $4,000 each, and once we even bought a Rolls Royce Phantom at short notice for a client, which we later shipped to his home in Europe!

The most decadent request though, goes to one delightful guest who invited us to redecorate their villa for a quarter of a million dollars – the same value as the villa itself. That was a fun weekend for sure!

Christian in Mykonos

Q: If you had to pick a destination in the world for unrivalled luxury, where would you choose?

One of the perks of the job is that Villazzo is made up of all my favorite destinations; Miami Beach, St. Tropez and Aspen.

It’s hard to choose a personal favorite, but Courchevel in France is my go-to destination for skiing, while Mykonos is quickly becoming one of our worst kept secrets! It’s really blowing up in popularity, making now a great time to visit.

Q: Do you have any insider tips for online rental bookings?

If you can be flexible with timings, you can expect less than half price rates travelling off-peak. The downside though, is that you might miss out on all the action and buzz that make these destinations so great.

Holidays are so important, and so brief, that they should be spent well. I can only advise renting luxury villas with Villazzo’s ‘VillaHotel’ service whenever possible, to guarantee an unforgettable vacation. It’s the main reason why I started Villazzo.

Q: And finally, what’s next for Villazzo?

As mentioned, we recently launched our sister brand ‘Global Luxury Villas’ by Villazzo, to offer concierge-serviced villa rentals around the world. While they don’t come with the full hotel setup and staffing as VillaHotels do, they are more affordable and in a greater variety of destinations too.

We have also opened a Villazzo Investment Fund, to acquire properties with great potential that can make money through VillaHotel rentals in the meantime.

WHY WINTER IS THE PERFECT SEASON TO VISIT MIAMI

Friday, October 5th, 2018
Miami Luxury Villa Rentals

While winter may be the season to wrap up warm for many of us, the lucky people of Miami get to bask in the glorious Florida sunshine and revel in the many events taking place. It’s one of the reasons why the ‘Sunshine State’ is so popular for luxury villa rentals this time of year.

If you’re wondering where to take a vacation this winter, look no further than Miami – a city that has great food, a thriving art scene, plenty of events and golden beaches for days!

Go for the Weather

The tropical climate of Miami makes it a year-round favorite with holidaymakers. Yet, winter is one of the most popular seasons to come, with typical temperatures around 24°/75 and rising. At a time when many parts of the world are wrapping up, Miami bucks the trend with its glorious sunshine.

Villa Valentina

Enjoy Happy Hour

Miami is known for its thriving nightlife and with its privileged island position, sets the perfect scene for cocktails at sunset. Whether you prefer to enjoy this from your own luxury vacation home, such as Villa Valentina surrounded by water on Jungle Island, or one of the many rooftop bars the city has to offer, you’re spoilt for choice!

Villa Siri

Special Get-Togethers

With thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s taking place in Winter, Miami is the perfect gathering for groups. All that’s required is a luxurious place to stay, such as Villa Siri, which includes six bedrooms and its own heated pool (game room, indoor bar, piano and steam room!). With so much on offer, you’ll never have to leave the island to celebrate with good company.

The Beach

Known for its golden stretches of sand and turquoise waters, Miami’s beach scene is one of its timeless tourist attractions. With so much space, there’s always plenty of room for visitors, some who come for the surf.

Villa Vanya
Of course, Miami is a city that revels in glamour and decadence, so for the true Miami experience, book a luxury home. Villa Vanya offers tranquil views of the bay from your very own pool. That’s how Miami rolls!

Awesome Events!

During the winter months, Miami perks up with some of the most renowned international festivals coming to the city.

Miami’s famed art deco scene comes alive during Art Basel (6-9 December) with 70,000 visitors descending on the city. This is a fun time to experience the city’s vibrant art scene, with paintings, sculptures, installations, photos and film, showcased throughout 250 galleries.

Villa Melissa
Meanwhile, attracting a jet-set crowd, the International Boat Show, livens up the city with the annual event returning 14-18 February. The only way to visit is by boat, which can be moored up at your own private dock at Villa Melissa. Set in the prime location of Jungle Island, this luxury vacation home is within easy reach of the Marina Stadium for guests attending the show.

South Beach Wine & Food Festival

If you’re a foodie, then stick around and join the 60,000 guests that come here for the South Beach Wine & Food Festival from 20th February. With 85 events throughout the five-day festival, it’s an unmissable opportunity to enjoy renowned chefs serving up creative fusions at the forefront of international cuisine.

And finally, winter in Miami means only one thing for fans of electric dance music, and that’s the Winter Music Conference. Attracting global superstars and international DJs, Miami is put on a world stage when it returns on 25-21 March. Get those glow sticks out!

Enjoy Miami as it’s meant – in true style, staying in a luxury villa rentals with Villazzo. With outstanding customer service and an unrivalled portfolio of properties, you’re guaranteed a five-star stay.