The i-escape blog / Nadine Mellor

By Nadine Mellor, Kids Collection Editor

Despite lockdowns, despite home schooling, despite everything, we still managed to unearth some beautiful B&Bs, chic coastal hotels and heavenly villas this year for our Kids Collection. Here are 12 of the best.

From Aragon to the Isle of Wight, they’re all hidden away in beautiful yet under-the-radar locations: gorgeous scenery, bags of fresh air, plus a pool, beach or lake for swimming. All are brilliant for that long-overdue family holiday.

 

Puglia Boutique Villas, Puglia, Southern Italy

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A trio of snazzy showstopper villas (for 4-10) dotted across this under-rated region (two close to the Adriatic coast, the third is 35 mins’ drive from the sea), each set up for indoor-outdoor living and with sweeping views, plus there’s the option of concierge services.

Why families love it: Each villa has a twin or bunk room, gardens to tear about and a good-sized private swimming pool; beaches and family restaurants nearby.

 

Diles & Rinies, Tinos, Cyclades, Greece

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Enjoy the independence of a villa rental with hotel services at this private hillside estate of eight boutique villas (with 2, 3 or 4 bedrooms), a gourmet restaurant, astounding views and a big infinity pool.

Why families love it: southern Tinos has gorgeous sandy beaches, each villa has a twin room and some have private pools, there’s a kids menu and creative play sessions are available on request.

 

Foxham Boutique Barn, Wiltshire, UK

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In 200 acres of peaceful woodland, meadows and orchards, this contemporary barn conversion (which comes with piano, record player, games and DVDs for cosy evenings) is perfect for secluded sojourns and communing with nature.

Why families love it: The second bedroom is a twin, outdoor spaces to discover include a woodland camp and stone folly, plus a private lake with rowing boat for wild swimming.

 

You and the Sea, Lisbon Coast, Portugal

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In cool surfer town Ericeira, this minimalist boho apart-hotel has apartments ranging in size from 1-4 bedrooms, a sauna and a funky restaurant with an open kitchen.

Why families love it: There’s a playground, games room, kids menu, a swimming pool and the beach is right across the street.

The Pakleni Island Hideaway, Croatia           

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Set on a peninsula (with shingly beaches to both sides) on a car-free islet near Hvar is this new and secluded four-bedroom (all ensuite) eco-friendly villa.

Why families love it: The semi-wild garden is fun to explore and has a swinging chair, hammocks and beanbags, there’s a private jetty into gin-clear waters, and lots of watersports nearby.

 

Hotel Mas de la Costa, Aragon, Spain

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Deep in the countryside with 23 hectares of olive and almond groves, this 19th-century farmhouse has been lovingly restored as a delightful small hotel with a Mediterranean garden.

Why families love it: There’s a pleasingly large saltwater pool, plenty of nooks and crannies, board games, a TV room and library with comics, cycling trails, crystal caves and castles nearby.

 

7 The Sandy Feet Retreat, Lincolnshire, UK

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This striking architect-designed three-bedroom off-grid beach house is on an under-the-radar wild sandy beach within a coastal nature reserve – great for stargazing and birding.

Why families love it: There’s a fire pit for toasting marshmallows, a bunk room for kids, baby & toddler gear, a snug with Netflix and games plus watersports gear to borrow.

 

Chateau de la Ruche, Normandy, France

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A beautifully restored 18th-century chateau turned boutique B&B, this comes with three bedrooms, vast gardens and woodlands, and local and seasonal food.

Why families love it: The grounds are perfect for hide and seek, and have a playground with swings, trampoline and tree house; the lake comes with a rowing boat.

 

Villa Stari Mlin, Herceg Novi, Montenegro

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With sweeping views across the peerless Bay of Kotor, this hillside villa (once an ancient olive mill) has five ensuite double bedrooms, a lovely walled garden and al fresco eating spaces plus an outdoor kitchen.

Why families love it: Local activities include sailing, sea-kayaking, cycling and hiking, two rooms can be made up as twins, and a super infinity pool.

 

10 Alas Resort & Spa, Peloponnese, Greece

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On a sea-washed spit with a private sandy cove, this family-friendly hotel comes with a small spa and a good range of spacious bedrooms and suites.

Why families love it: The swimming pool is huge, the sea-facing restaurant has a kids menu, it’s all very affordable, and there are lots of beaches nearby.

 

11 Ventnor Beach Cottage, Isle of Wight, UK

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A cute little cottage with sun terrace in the heart of one of the island’s best towns, this 3-bedroomed nautical chic hideaway is great value, even in high summer.

Why families love it: the cottage is in a secured courtyard mews and is only 5 minutes from the beach; the Isle of Wight is fabulous for families with everything from amusement parks to wildlife walks to discover.

 

12 Koh Jum Beach Villas, Krabi Province, Thailand

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Southern Thailand’s best secret, the island of Koh Jum is a hidden gem with its calm turquoise seas and golden sandy beaches; these family-focused villas are the best place to stay on the island.

Why families love it: The various configurations of villas means there’s one exactly right for your size of family party, the sea is warm, beaches are safe, there are Thai cooking courses to try, bikes to borrow and a lovely swimming pool.

 

Click to see more of our family-friendly hotels and hideaways

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