Posts Tagged ‘luxury villa’

Miami: Your autumn pick-me-up

Tuesday, October 8th, 2013

It should come as no surprise that travelers often cite fall as the best time of year to experience Miami. Although much of the country begins to cool down in the month of October, the average high temperature in Miami sits around 85 degrees (approx. 30 Celsius). With tourist season long past, there’s also more freedom to enjoy the true Miami lifestyle (think ample beach space). If you’re still planning your fall Miami getaway, Villazzo still has some of its signature VillaHotels available.


1. Book Villa Azza (above): A modern and tropical waterfront escape on Palm Island (starting at $5,700 per night)



Wednesday, May 1st, 2013

Luxus und Laessigkeit in St. Tropez


Tuesday, January 1st, 2013

The Hot Places to Eat and Drink During Your Miami Vacation

Sunday, August 21st, 2011
Everything From Jeff McInnis’ Soon-to-Open Resto to Haute Living’s Top 5 Coffee Spots in Miami
Jeff McInnis via Haute Living

Visitors flock to Miami for many reasons; sun and sand, art and culture, the vibrant nightlife. If you’re planning a Miami luxury villa rental vacation you have the option of eating in your own state-of-the-art kitchen or venturing out to find your meal in one of Miami’s celebrated restaurants. There are classics–Joe’s Stone Crabs, Nobu, Palme d’Or–and trendier locales, not to mention a variety of different cuisines.

Like in most big cities, in Miami new restaurants from big name chefs are cause for a ton of buzz and anticipation. One such chef is Jeff McInnis, who disappointed many Miami diners when he left his post at Gigi’s earlier this year. Miami’s Top Chef has now been tapped for the new Yardbird Southern Table and Bar, which according to its website, is set to open in Fall 2011 at 16th and Lenox on South Beach. If the restaurant stays on schedule (reports have it opening in September), you’ll be able to give it a try if you head to Miami for your luxury villa rental location in the off-season or in time for Art Basel.

Five Napkin Turkey Burger – Photo by
via The Miami New Times

Michelle Bernstein is another chef with a high profile on the Miami dining scene. Bernstein’s new offering, Crumb on Parchment, may be laidback but it is attracting well-heeled lunchers and foodies alike. The restaurant on 3930 NE Second Avenue has a café-style vibe, serves all day breakfast and scrumptious options like classic baked goods (delicious chocolate chip cookies) and elevated lunch food (tuna sandwiches served with kimci aioli and spicy pickles). While a luxury villa rental is the perfect place to throw a bash, Crumb is also a site to consider for a private party, especially one where food wrapped in parchment and utensils served up in pails only adds to the charm and ambiance.

Having a cup of coffee brewed in the state of the art kitchen of your luxury villa rental is a great way to the start the day or unwind at night, but where to go for your java fix when you’re out and about in Miami during the day? To answer that question has published their picks for the Top Five Coffee Shops in Miami: Café Demetrio, Nespresso, David’s Café, Pasion del Cielo and Versailles. Of the five we’re partial to Demetrio’s gorgeous location and gourmet brews.

And, lastly, if you’re looking for some more casual dining you’ll be happy to know that Miami has been overrun as of late with gourmet burger joints. Take Shake Shack, for instance, which just announced its opening another location in Coral Gables. The Miami New Times recently compared the newly opened Five Napkin Burger (located on Lincoln Road) to BGR the Burger Joint, which is on Miracle Mile. The results? According to the critic Lee Klein, BGR has the better “signature beef burger,” while Five Napkin wins when it comes to turkey burgers. And that’s the beauty of Miami–high or low, luxury or laidback, the city really delivers.

Villa Contenta, seen here, is just one of the gorgeous luxury villa rental options that Villazzo offers for the Miami area. Visit for information on the different villas available, their unique features, stunning locations and modern amenities.

Villazzo CEO Christian Jagodzinski: “VillaHotel Nathalie is the Most Impressive Villa I’ve seen in Saint-Tropez Since 2010”

Friday, March 11th, 2011
villazzo villahotel saint-tropez

Villazzo's Founder & CEO Christian Jagodzinski

When it comes to luxury travel, it takes a lot to impress me.

That, after all, is what inspired me to start Villazzo in the first place: I wanted to create a luxury villa rental company that offered exclusive world travelers the finest luxury villas in the world’s top vacation destinations, complete with five-star luxury hotel service. This is what my VillaHotel Concept is all about.

Through my travels, I’ve been able to ascertain what I believe to be the world’s top luxury resorts, and they are the destinations that Villazzo currently focuses on: Miami Beach, Aspen, Saint-Tropez, and Capri. To be sure, there are other destinations that could be added to our selection (and maybe will someday), but currently these specific destinations are the ones that have a sufficient crop of luxury villas that meet Villazzo’s strict standards.

The next step is always to find the most exquisite, private, luxury villas in these destinations that can then be transformed into VillaHotels.

In a place like Saint-Tropez, that’s harder than you think: there are hundreds of houses in and around Saint-Tropez whose owners would like to think are considered “luxury villas.” But in order to determine if a house is truly deserving of the VillaHotel treatment, my team and I have to personally search and inspect the entire villa market in every destination. Most of the villas we see fail to impress.

But I recently came upon a new luxury villa in Saint-Tropez that might be the finest I’ve ever come across in Saint-Tropez!

VillaHotel Nathalie


Miami Beach In October: Fashion, Wine, and the Prelude to Luxury Villa Rental Season

Saturday, September 4th, 2010
Fashion, wine, and the prelude to Luxury Villa Rental season make for a great Fall South Beach getaway.

As the summer season draws to a close, that doesn’t mean all ideas of vacation need flee until winter. In many locations, as seen in St. Tropez, autumn is the perfect time to visit. Usually you will find less of a crowd and, in the case of Miami Beach, some great events to help pass the time when you’re not whiling away the hours poolside at your luxury villa rental. In October alone, the city of Miami is hosting two great events that shouldn’t be missed if you’re vacationing there at the time. In fact, they’re pretty great reasons to plan a jaunt to Miami in October, even if you had no prior plans to visit. (more…)

Can You Really Trust Luxury Villa Rental Companies?

Wednesday, July 7th, 2010

Luxury villa rentals in St. Tropez, Marbella, Miami Beach, and beyond offer the privacy and exclusivity that you cannot get from even the most expensive 5-star hotel. But is the risk of picking a “luxury lemon” worth giving up on a reliable luxury hotel experience?

Wherever there is sand, sun, and sea in the world, you’re bound to find a crop of luxury villa rentals to choose from. Whether it’s St. Tropez, Marbella, Miami Beach, or Ibiza, you can always find a huge selection of amazing rental properties that span traditional to contemporary architecture and that will put you in the middle of the action and nightlife as well as the middle of nowhere. For those who have a already made a few trips to these exclusive vacation havens and have tried out a few different hotels, the prospect of having their own private luxury villa seems like the next logical step in experiencing the ultimate luxury vacation.

However, with luxury villa rentals, there is always an unknown quantity — or, more specifically, an “unknown quality.”

Luxury villa rental companies are notorious for showing only the best aspects of the luxury villas they list. Sure, they might show a bunch of photos of a villa’s pristine pool, charming terrace, and well-appointed master bathroom. But they fail to show how the plasma TV doesn’t work, or how the villa’s wall that faces the seaside is crumbling, or how the bathroom hasn’t been renovated for 25 years.

I recently read an article about “how to choose a luxury villa rental in Tuscany.” The writer told a hilarious yet tragic story about how once he had chosen a majestic Tuscan villa to stay in, thinking that it would be a single-family luxury vacation rental. When he arrived, he was dismayed to find out that the villa, “had been carved up into apartments with thin dividing walls.” He paints a miserable Tuscan vacation in that villa, saying, “One doesn’t go to Italy to be woken by renditions of Take Me Home, Country Road – at 6am, in German.”

Oh, the horror!

This writer’s article, as well as many others who write about the luxury villa rental market, go on to list all of the due diligence required to ensure that what you see is what you get when choosing a luxury villa rental. In order to ensure a high quality villa rental, writers suggest so much comprehensive research and scrutiny over a property that you would be completely exhausted by the end of the search! Some writers suggest finding a contact in the city that you want to stay in and paying them a small sum of money to independently check out the villa rental you are considering. Another writer suggests that you “pack a small tool kit and a cache of batteries in various sizes (for TV remote controllers, torches and the like; never presume a villa’s inventory will be complete).”

Who is going to pack a tool kit for a vacation in a luxury villa rental?

The only way you can truly assure yourself an amazing villa vacation experience that lives up to your expectations is to work with a luxury villa rental company that visits and hand-selects the villas that it offers. If you use this criteria to select luxury villa rental companies to work with, you’ll find that there are very few of them in the world today who can vouch for the properties that they list on their websites.

For example, Wimco Villas, which is one of the largest luxury villa rental companies in the industry, offers this vague explanation in the “About Us” section of their website: “Each [Wimco] staff member is required to visit several of our vacation destinations each year and familiarize themselves with the villas and hotels there so they can serve you better.” How many is “several,” exactly? Which villas listed on their site have been visited and inspected, and which ones have not?

Other luxury villa rental sites, such as Jetsetter, use a small logo on their property pages to show prospective clients which of their properties have been checked and visited by a staff member and which have not. This is a much more transparent way of finding luxury villa rentals that you can trust to live up to what is posted on a website. Of course, it also limits the number of “safe” luxury villa options to choose from.

However, smaller, ultra-exclusive villa rental companies, such as Villazzo, guarantee their entire list of luxury villa rentals. Companies like these hand-select the properties they offer, and usually maintain an office in all of the vacation destinations where they offer luxury villa rentals. This is by far the best way to find the luxury villa of your dreams, since you can be assured that the villa has had a thorough walk-through and is determined to be a property that lives up to the high standards of the company that lists them on their website.

So, the next time you go in search of a luxury villa rental online, remember to look for a company that offers the best guarantee of quality, and the largest selection of luxury villas that have been hand-selected and approved. Stick to this approach and you can be assured that you won’t have to bring a toolbox with you on your next vacation!

Crumbling Stucco, Broken Flat Screen TVs, & Stained Sheets: The Ugly Side of Luxury Villa Rentals

Wednesday, April 14th, 2010

The rise of the internet and the information age is directly responsible for the luxury villa rental market as it exists today. Without high-speed internet connections, impressive websites, and the ability to get information at the click of a mouse, luxury world travelers would never be able to search out and find the luxury villa rental of their dreams in their desired vacation destination. In the past, the villa rental process was cumbersome: usually, your first trip to a locale such as Miami Beach, St. Tropez, or Marbella involved staying in a hotel and investing a day out of your vacation schedule to be shuttled around town by a rental agent in hopes of finding a luxury villa to rent for your next vacation.

Now, however, luxury villa rental agencies provide a wealth of crisp photos, specifications, and details for their entire roster of luxury villas, allowing prospective renters to find the luxury villa of their dreams. Together with online booking features, luxury villa rental websites make it easier than ever to find a luxury villa in the destination of your choice.

Luxury Villa Rental Websites: What the Photos Don’t Show You

When you peruse the typical luxury villa rental website, you’re bound to be wooed by a litany of enchanting photos of a picturesque villa set against the backdrop of a pristine, private beach, azure sea, and balmy, breezy skyline. You’ll see shots of fabulously decorated living, dining, and bedrooms, gourmet kitchens, sunny terraces, and vanishing-edge swimming pools. Together with the size and amenities of the villa, you’ll be convinced that, upon arrival, your luxury villa rental will look exactly as it is represented on the website.

Think again.

The fact is, the vast majority of luxury villa rental agencies spend the majority of their efforts gathering up vast lists of villa rentals from all over the world. Typically, their approach is “quantity over quality,” opting to give prospective luxury villa renters a vast list of rental options rather than quality that customers can count on. Quite often, arriving at a luxury villa rental result is great disappointment.

The photos on the website may have shown a sunny terrace with a beautiful swimming pool. Upon arrival, however, you’ll see what the camera failed to show: the stucco on the back side of the villa is crumbling off of the house, and the swimming pool is badly in need of a cleaning.

Inside, photos of the living rooms and bedrooms had boasted flat screen TVs and deluxe entertainment centers. When you arrive, however, the master bedroom TV is broken, or even worse — the satellite is misaligned, and the only channels you can get in are from the Albanian state-run television service.

Luxury villa rental linens, however, tend to be the biggest letdown. Photos on luxury villa websites tend to show what look like clean, well-decorated bedrooms and bathrooms. The reality, however, is that the sheets, towels, and linens haven’t been replaced in years, and have seen a lot of work. Dingy, stained sheets, threadbare towels in the bathroom, and worn out linens and housewares are quite typical in even the most promising luxury villa rentals.

What’s more, don’t expect the typical online luxury villa rental company to have the power – or the inclination – to do anything about these completely unacceptable conditions once you arrived. The fact remains that luxury villa rental agencies simply list properties; they rarely visit and inspect them first-hand. Furthermore, they rarely have any office or base of operations in the vacation destinations where they offer luxury villa rentals. So, aside from making a nasty phone call, these agencies will do little else to fix the problems that you encounter with your luxury villa rental.

Finding Online Luxury Villa Rental Agencies You Can Trust:

Given this reality, how can you ever trust online luxury villa rental agencies? There are two characteristics to look for that can assure you that you’re working with a company that is giving you a fair representation of the luxury villas it offers for rent. First off, look for an agency that hand-selects its luxury villas. You’ll be hard-pressed to find luxury villa rental agencies that claim this, and few others who can back up the claim. Chances are, however, that if the agency has a gigantic selection of villas from all over the world, they haven’t personally seen 99% of them. Only agencies that feature very limited, exclusive luxury villa rentals in a handful of the most exclusive vacation destinations can truly be trusted.

Second, see if the agency offers any kind of money-back guarantee on te quality of their luxury villa rentals. If the agency has seen and inspected the villa first-hand, then they won’t be afraid to vouch for its quality. We wary of any agency that isn’t willing to put its money where its mouth is for its luxury villa rental offerings.

Additionally, luxury villa rental agencies that offer in-house concierge or hotel-style services along with their villa rentals are more trustworthy, given the fact that they must have some kind of branch office in the locations where they rent properties. One must be careful, however, since many so-called “concierge services” are often outsourced to a local company that would have no expertise in selecting and approving high quality luxury villas for rental purposes.

In short, as a prospective renter, you need to trust the expertise of the agency you use. Does the agency boast of its experience in luxury world travel? Is it run by people who seem to know what luxury travel is all about? In the online luxury villa rental industry, agencies are only as good as the people who run them, and whether they have taken the time and expense to back up their listings with a quality guarantee. Otherwise, you’re risking a rude awakening when you arrive at your luxury villa rental for the first time.

quality guarantee. Otherwise, you’re risking a rude awakening when you arrive at your luxury villa rental for the first time.


Sunday, April 1st, 2007

With floor-to-ceiling windows in its bedrooms, lounges and dining areas, your VIP clients will have a hard time peeling their eyes away from spectacular views of the Mediterranean from VillaHotel La Forge in St. Tropez. Set among manicured gardens and sweeping lawns, guests of the five-bedroom villa, available through Villazzo (, can relax by the infinity poolor sip cocktails in the main lounge by the full-size tree sculpture, which has a fireplace at the base of its trunk. Though your clients will have access to chefs, waiters and butlers, they can also order room service or take advantage of the “Spa at Home” option and choose from a full range of massages, facials and nail services. (more…)