Last month whist booking a last minute trip I pulled up my go-to accommodation sourcing site, booking.com and scrolled through the list of possibilities for a three night stay in Zakynthos. Within moments of scrolling I came across Villa Aria and after clicking through the pictures I eagerly booked.
The professional images showcased online absolutely got my attention but it was the close proximity to the famous Navagio ‘Shipwreck’ Beach that really sealed the deal. I was heading to Greece especially to shoot at that very spot so Villa Aria looked like the perfect choice.
With a carry-on packed and my beach bestie Inge Mae in tow we headed to Zakynthos on a 3 hour flight from London Gatwick to excitedly and finally see the famous viewpoint, little did we know as this point that we would also fall head of heels in love with our accommodation.
Opening the rustic wooden door to our home for the next few days was a near slo-mo moment as what lied beyond was completely unexpected. The villa was breathtaking. Set high up on a hill over looking the Agean Sea the 6 person villa was a Grecian dream. With a traditional rustic decor and design, the contrast between the exposed brick cottage and contemporary furnishings was stunning. Perfectly planted blooming flowers lined the walkways and the outdoor space was perfectly utilised with fresh white seating areas and a built in barbecue.
The main villa had two bedrooms which, along with the annexe which sleeps an extra two people, has recently been renovated as well at the grounds and pool area so very corner looked fresh out of a home interiors glossy. We had hit the instagram jackpot! Clean colours, draping light fabrics, dashes of Grecian pinks and blues and the additional french influenced outdoor balcony’s had us swooning and grinning from ear!
The large pool is big enough for not only for the 6 people able to sleep in the villa but also neighbours and their neighbours neighbours, it’s massive! The are a number of stylish and comfortable options to lounge in and the view is one to rave about with the lush green hill leading down onto the sun-lit expanse of sea.
Inside the villa is a fully equipped kitchen, a large and rather quirkily exposed living space and two bedrooms with large bathrooms upstairs. Each room has it’s own stunning view and in-keeping with the rest of the property the decor is traditional yet contemporary. The showers are amazingly powerful and heat up in seconds which for me is always a real bonus when travelling. The bedrooms are completely separate and private making it perfect for couples to share with friends. There’s also extra bedding and choices of pillows for even the fussiest of sleepers.
The views really are incredible with the main bedroom stealing the show in the mornings as the sun rises to the east of the window allowing you to literally wake up with the sun. The early and powerful a glistening rays are unmissable making sure you maximise your days sent in Zakynthos.
The owner was on hand to greet us for check-in, he gives guests a full tour of the villa and facilities on arrival and if you are lucky enough he’ll also leave you some of his home grown olive oil, it’s delicious!
During our 3 night stay we cooked ourselves dinner every night and made fresh salads for lunch, we had few reasons to leave once fed, our mornings were spent exploring the island and afternoons spent lazing by the pool. As the outdoor environment seemed to go quite well with a glass of Rose, driving elsewhere in the evenings was simply not possible 😉
*If you are planning to self cater make sure you go to a supermarket near the airport as there’s much more choice there than the smaller shops near the villa.
We took full advantage of the large and gated driveway to store our hire car in the evenings and it was great to have a safe and large area to park. If you do choose to stay at Villa Aria then I highly recommend you hire a car from the airport as the taxi fare alone will be come to the same amount as a car for a few days. It’s roughly a 45 minute journey form the international airport and a really pretty (albeit incredible windy in a few places!) drive. As well as driving yourself to your accommodation you can use the car to visit some of the famous viewpoints and locations on the island, the famous Navagio Shipwreck Lookout point is a 15 minute drive away and the nearest marina is just 5 minutes south. We also drove to the east side of the island where we discovered Porto Limnionas Beach Club.
For a luxury yet affordable summer break I couldn’t recommend Villa Aria more, I have every intention of revisiting next year with a couple of my close friends and their partners. We had an amazing girlie getaway but that pool definitely needs to be treated to few parties!! Who’s joining?!