Yes, we all do it. Time runs away with us, and before you know it you haven’t seen some of your closest relatives in years. Life is definitely one big excuse for most of us, but perhaps this year it’s time to change that. Get everyone together, but rather than putting all the pressure on one family member to host the entire clan, turn the reunion into a retreat. We’ve compiled a list of some of the most spectacular holiday homes around, so that the only thing you’ll need to concern yourself with is finding a date when all of your nearest and dearest are free.
Wake up to a view of the rugged Taurus Mountains. Admire clear Kalkan Bay waters spilling out into the glorious Med. At Villa Kalkan, there’s a wrap-around balcony perfect for evening cocktails with a view. You’ll also find a swanky pool terrace for lounging on the sunbeds. This five bedroom villa is great for families who crave the sun. Everything about this Turkish build is swoon-worthy. The open-plan living area’s wall-to-wall glass doors unfold onto a large outdoor platform, revealing spellbinding panoramic views of the coast. So, sashay down to the first floor in your finest swimwear, soak in the fizzing Jacuzzi and float in the heavenly infinity pool. Later, cook dinner on the sparkling kitchen island or dine al fresco after making use of the barbecue. Finally, settle into the huge L-shaped sofa for a comfy night of stargazing.
Sandwiched between the wild moors of Dartmoor and the Salcombe Coast, enveloped by a soft patchwork of turtle-green fields, is Ludbrook Manor. This Grade II listed building has features dating back to 1050 AD, and really is everything that holiday dreams are made of. On approach, you’ll see acres of South Hams countryside, some of which is landscaped into a water garden with oriental influences. In addition, there’s a floodlit tennis court, outdoor hot tub and chicken coop. With capacity for up to 24 guests, each suite has an impeccable, distinctive design.
From remarkable, oak four-posters, to luxurious, freestanding baths; a purple, velvet chaise longue to a room built on top of a glass-covered well (The Well Room), it’s easy to live like royalty here. Roaring marble fireplaces keep you warm, and the extensively stocked kitchen makes it easy to self-cater. The manor is so well-built for guests, that it’s easy not to leave the estate during your stay. In addition to the aforementioned amenities, there is also a table tennis table, grand piano, giant chessboard, swimming pool, music systems and some fairly large televisions.
For an inspiring retreat, stay in a forest-engulfed fairytale castle. With rapunzel-esque turrets, it’s easy to let down you hair in this gorgeous part of southern France. Those who appreciate the raw wonder of nature will enjoy swimming in the local river or wandering the wilds, but this property is not short of extravagant luxury either. There are countless astonishing features across this 1575 estate; whether you want to relax in a clawfoot bathtub, ascend regal, twisting staircases or admire the dainty, floral wallpaper. Suits of armour line the halls and cavernous stone ceilings echo of the castle’s past.
Come snowfall or sunshine, this chateau looks completely divine. In winter, eat in the candle-lit, formal dining room using crockery from the distressed welsh dresser, and in summer cook outside in the poolside kitchen. Chateau Chamborigaud even has its own vineyards, and there are plenty of picturesque villages around.
This mansion does what it says on the tin and so much more. This hillside property does indeed boast views of Loch Striven, on the rural Scottish coast. It also happens to be surrounded by acres of secluded forest. Those families who like an active break will be spoilt for choice, with onsite shooting and fishing, tennis, mountain biking and golf all possible. There are a whole host of natural attractions too, from deep glens to mighty waterfalls. On top of this, there is a billiard room with a bar, and a small, eccentric public house within the grounds.