Christmas Markets & New Year Party Pads on

Enjoy a magical Christmas break in a French chateau or a NYE party in a Scots castle

Christmas carols, mulled wine, mince pies and sherry, there’s no better way to celebrate the festive season than by visiting a traditional Christmas market. Some of the best options a short hop from the UK include Berlin, home to over 60 magical markets, the pretty Tyrolean town of Kitzbühel in Austria, or the ruined Abbey of Maillezais in the Vendée, France. And for a fittingly festive base, choose a unique, traditional home from HomeAway Holiday-Rentals.

Holiday rentals are particularly suited to Christmas holidays, as it is often the time when friends and family come together. Whether you need one bedroom or six, there will be a holiday home to suit and renting somewhere often works out much cheaper per head. What’s more, with a huge variety of large homes to rent, there couldn’t be a better setting for a New Year’s Eve party too. Fancy a Scots castle, a Tuscan villa or an Irish country house? It could be yours!

On there are currently over 18,000 homes worldwide that can sleep 10+ and are still available for the party of the year.

Below we have compiled a list of properties ideal for visiting three special Christmas markets, as well as a couple of large rentals for those who wish to celebrate the arrival of 2010 in style.

Prices quoted are per property per week for the Christmas week/New Year’s Eve and all still had good availability for the ’09 season at time of going to press.


Berlin, Germany
Modern city apartment in the heart of Berlin

STUDIO, SLEEPS 2 - For a romantic Christmas break, this modern apartment is the ideal retreat for a couple looking to explore all sixty magical Christmas markets which are organised each year in Berlin. Located on the seventh floor, the spacious window front of the apartment gives a direct view of the Alexander tower, while the new Schönhauserstrasse with its trendy shops can be reached in just a few minutes on foot.
£500 per week

Kitzbühel, Austria
Gartenhotel Rosenhof – a great selection of holiday houses and apartments - You'll have plenty of space and a unique atmosphere in this splendid private guesthouse which offers individual apartments or romantic detached chalets, plus 5,000 m² of garden, a heated pool, bicycle rental, table tennis, games and a toy room. The complex is located just 5 minutes from Kitzbühel, where a traditional Christmas market will be organised from 29th November 2009 until 23rd December 2009.
Prices ranging from £1,107 per week for a 2-bedroom apartment to £2,609 per week for a 3-bedroom penthouse

Abbey of Maillezais, France
Charming French chateau with private heated pool

8 BEDROOMS, SLEEPS 17 - The Abbey of Maillezais puts on a wonderful Christmas market each December with lots of wonderful French treats to buy as presents, festive illuminations, camel rides and vin chaud. Located nearby the abbey, this holiday chateau has 8 bedrooms and can accommodate up to 17 people, making it a marvellous venue for a family Christmas – the owners even put up extensive Christmas decorations and a large tree. Ideally suited to groups of friends or large families holidaying together, the property is entirely at the disposal of the guests.
£2,750 per week


Historic County Donegal house with a remarkable, stylish design

5 BEDROOMS, SLEEPS 10 - An exquisitely decorated house dating from the 1870s and situated in the heritage town of Ardara. Featuring top interior design, furniture from New York, Paris and London, roaring fires, superb comfortable beds and a fantastic style, this is an ideal setting for a group of family or friends.
£2,727 per week

Charming villa featuring Tuscan wood beamed ceiling, Tuscany

9 BEDROOMS, SLEEPS 25 - Fully equipped kitchens, elegant living room with comfortable designer furniture and stylish Tuscan cottage furniture, comfortably seats and precious furnishing, all make this property a unique location for special occasions.
£4,364 per week

The UK
Scots baronial 19th century castle, 200m from the beach, Argyll & Stirling

11 BEDROOMS, SLEEPS 27 - This listed castle is in a prime position on the edge of Loch Long which leads out to sea, and has great views across the water, with hills and mountains providing a beautiful backdrop. Just 200 metres from a stunning beach, the castle has recently been redecorated and restored to its former glory and is perfect for a family holiday or celebration - as a special event or wedding venue, or for corporate entertaining.
£6,000 per week