“On Captain Corelli’s mystical island, 3 secluded hillside houses for 2-6, with stylish pools and exquisite sea views”
Each villa is beautifully styled, with fresh, original touches. Beds, we've heard, are super-comfortable, and sheets and towels are changed twice a week; daily cleaning is available on request. Ensuite bathrooms (1 per bedroom) have good showers. Each villa has an open-plan living area with sofas, a TV/DVD player and iPod dock, and a kitchen with an indoor dining table. Outside, sun terraces are strewn with cushioned chairs, sunloungers and shaded outdoor areas.
Cricket (sleeps 6)
This villa sleeps 6, with 2 guests in the annexe that overlooks the pool. Floors are big-tiled in black and white, ceilings are airy, shuttered windows are painted turquoise and all feels wonderfully uncluttered. Ensuite bathrooms have white painted beams and the same checked floors; there are ladders for snowy towels.
Gecko (sleeps 6)
From the living area, a door leads to the main bedroom - in fresh creams, whites and blues - and another to the twin. This in turn opens to a long narrow room which, if there are just 4 of you, makes a pleasant dressing room/ reading room, with French windows opening to the pool. If there are more of you, this room can also be a twin/double.
Scorpio (sleeps 2)
In kooky Scorpio, an open-plan space: a big romantic bed with a dark-wood backdrop, and towels in slate grey and brick red in the shower bathroom. A kitchen and little living area. Best of all, a stunning indoor-outdoor infinity pool that wraps around the villa; bathe as the sun sets.
Kitchens are immaculate, all you’d hope for. A welcome hamper is provided, and mini markets are a 5-minute drive away, up the hill in Maganos. You have barbecues, too, and each villa has an indoor and outdoor dining area.
If you’d rather not cook, your nearest little taverna is on white pebbly St Jerusalim Bay, a 15-minute saunter downhill (and a trek up, but you could take the car). No menu, just what’s best and freshest that morning. The fish is extraordinary, the braised pork belly is delicious, but everything will put a smile on your face, including the tomato, olive and feta bread, loved by the locals. It is open lunchtime and evenings and on the beach you can hire sunbeds, parasols and lilos. For more choice - lots of choice - there’s Fiskardo (8km) with harbourside restaurants, cool bars and shops. Nowhere’s cheap on Kefalonia, especially Fiskardo, but the island does produce Greece's best wine - a legacy of the Venetians.
Fancy a lunch of delectable sun-dried octopus and juicy dolmades, spicy sausages and mouth-watering moussaka, as you shade beneath olive trees? Then hire a boat from Fiskardo and zip over to the island of Ithaca (as in Greek myth) where a steep walk up from the harbour brings you to the exceptional Polyphemus in Stavros Town. The restaurant, run by a communist chef who has covered its walls with pictures of Che Guevara (why not!), is open from May to October.
Cricket and Gecko are good family rentals for 6 + a baby. Each has a safe garden and a private pool. There are good kitchens to self-cater, barbecues and washing machines. Restaurants and beaches are a short drive away. Baby cots can be provided.
Cricket has 1 double room and 2 twin rooms, plus space for a baby cot, though it has an open staircase so wouldn't suit toddlers and should probably be avoided with children under 10. One of its bathrooms has a whirlpool bath. Gecko also has 1 double and 2 twin rooms plus space for a baby cot; its bathrooms are shower only.
Remember baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking
Well-equipped kitchens for self-catering, with ovens, hobs and microwaves. Cricket has a food blender
Cricket has an open staircase. The pools are not fenced