With the summer holidays looming large, families everywhere are getting excited about spending quality time together. But though the great outdoors beckon, you don’t have to stray from your holiday home to grab some fresh air and space. We’ve rounded up some fantastic properties all around Europe that offer serious alfresco space in which to flake out, have fun, and enjoy long leisurely meals—the stuff of which unforgettable getaways are made.
Feel awesome in Andalusia
It doesn’t come much more luxurious than this six-bedroom villa, where up to 14 of you can socialise on the covered living and dining terrace beside the sparkling swimming pool or on the barbecue terrace. The gardens and pools are accessed directly from the patio doors of the chic open-plan lounge with its plush white sofas and cool marble floors, and if you bag the master bedroom, you’ll also get your very own sea-view terrace. A beach with a choice of restaurants is a mere 50-metre stroll away, while the Old Town of Marbella is about 30 minutes away by car and two golf courses are within easy reach.
Coastal bliss in Corsica
Unfurl on a lounger or easy chair on the sea-view terrace of this stylish but homely 10-person villa. From the sprawling lawns, step down to your own waterfront terrace on a secluded strip of Mediterranean beach. Snorkelling gear is at hand if you want to take the plunge, and there’s a canoe for exploring plus a pétanque court. An outdoor pool and hot tub invite you to unwind, as does a sauna. All four bedrooms look over the water. By night, you hear nothing but the waves lapping at the shore. On the island’s eastern coast, the villa is a 10-minute drive from Sari-Solenzara with its beach, marina, shops, and restaurants.
Alfresco attitude on the Algarve
The indoor pool at this chic 10-person property will barely get a look in when you clock the outdoor pool and hot tub, fringed by palm trees and lined by inviting loungers. There are gardens blooming with avocados, oranges, lemons, figs, and grapes to which you’re free to help yourself. There’s also a covered alfresco lounge, a dining terrace, and a barbecue, and younger guests make a beeline for the lawned playground with its stilted den. All this and heavenly views of Silves, a few minutes’ drive away, with its market, restaurants, and cafes. Carvoeiro beach is about 10 minutes away by car too.
Cast away from civilisation in Croatia
Rolling lawns, a pergola lounge, a shimmering outdoor pool, kids’ play equipment, and table tennis make this smart four-bedroom villa in the Istria region a wonderful retreat where up to 10 of you can kick back for a week or two. You can dine outdoors too, in a pavilion with a brick-built barbecue. The setting is blissfully peaceful, yet you’re just a couple of minutes’ drive from the amenities of the town of Žminj, less than 20 minutes by car from Bale-Valle Beach and around half an hour from Pula Airport.
Carefree days in Corfu
Watch yachts scud across the Med from an infinity pool with underwater lighting or from a glass-sided terrace that feels as if it’s suspended over the sea. These are just two of the VIP touches that await you at this three-bedroom stone villa for up to six to seven. The garden with its shady bowers also seems to hang in the sky; within it you’ll find a traditional stone-built barbecue, an alfresco dining area, and a pergola lounge. Snare the master bedroom and you’ll enjoy you own sea-view balcony too, plus a Jacuzzi tub in which to luxuriate. You’re less than a kilometre from Agni beach and bay with its waterfront taverns and motorboat hire.