Luxury-seekers in search of some serious R&R away from the holiday crowds need look no further. From Costa Rica to Belize, these villas have everything from private yoga platforms to waterfall-screened spas and are so off the beaten track that you needn’t see another soul for the duration of your stay
Villa Manzu, Costa Rica
Set within the grounds of the private Peninsula Papagayo in the northwest province of Guanacaste, Villa Manzu offers the ultimate in tropical luxury. A nature lover’s paradise, this private 30,000 square foot sanctuary has five acres of lush grounds which attract monkeys, tropical birds and butterflies, with hammocks and outdoor sitting areas so you can make the most of the setting and 180-degree sea views. Sleeping up to 16 guests, the villa itself is a work of art, designed by architect Abraham Valenzuela, with elegant interiors, top-of-the-range technology and huge glass windows and doorways to bring the outside in. Guests can relax in the infinity-edged swimming pool, on-site spa (tucked behind a waterfall), outdoor bar or at the villa’s private beach, or put their feet up in the home cinema. There’s even a private yoga platform at your disposal. Priced from £12,500 per night based on 14 sharing, including all meals, executive chef team, personal driver, full bar service and guided activities.
Cayo Espanto, Belize
Privacy doesn’t come in much more beautiful a package than this – an exclusive four-acre private island hideaway found three miles off the coast of Belize, surrounded by the sparkling waters of the Caribbean. Seven villas offer a luxurious landing for up to 18 guests, each different in style ranging from spacious over-water bungalows to elegant beach-front villas, complete with private docks and private plunge pools. Barefoot luxury at its finest, guests here needn’t lift a finger, with round-the-clock service, 24-hour butlers and all food and drink completely catered for. All you need do is sit back in your hammock, drink in the spectacular views out to sea and lap up the blissful feeling of your own private island escape. Priced from £1,100 per night based on two sharing a villa including all meals and beverages.
Villa Bellavista, Dubrovnik, Croatia
Despite its proximity to Dubrovnik, Villa Bellavista enjoys a peaceful cliff-side location amid olive trees and extensive gardens; making it a serene spot for up to 12 guests to unwind near the Pearl of the Adriatic. Expertly blending comfort and luxury, the villas has six bright and spacious bedrooms, many of which have en-suites and private terraces. There’s also an on-site gym, spa area complete with sauna, steam room and massage beds, a beautiful heated pool and private beach access; plus panoramic views of the sparkling water and mega-yachts below. Priced from £6,600 per night based on 12 sharing on a B&B basis.
Ol Jogi- Laikipia Plateau, Kenya
Occupying a 58,000-acre private wildlife reserve amid Kenya’s Laikipia Plateau is Ol Jogi, the ultimate Kenyan bush retreat for up to 22 guests in search of a once-in-a-lifetime safari escape. Accommodation comes in the form of seven elaborately furnished, individually designed cottages with wood-burning fireplaces and lavish bathrooms, plus shared verandas overlooking the watering hole below. Guests have exclusive use of the entire reserve, free to explore the savannah for southern white rhinos, lions, cheetahs, giraffes and elephants on private games drives and bush walks. For those who can tear themselves away from the wildlife, there is a pool complete with cascading waterfall, private spa, tennis court, yoga room and fitness centre – but we’re sure the scenery will be enough to keep you occupied for hours on end. Priced from £1,200 per person per night including all meals, beverages and alcohol, spa treatment, private chef and activities including private game drives and guided wilderness walks.
Ambassador’s House, Galle, Sri Lanka
This vast 17th-century villa is hidden amid the historic UNESCO-certified town of Galle Fort, sleeping up to ten guests across five elegant bedrooms. Built in a traditional Dutch colonial style, towering ceilings, built-in archways and polished floors emanate a distinctly refined feel, housing a huge living room, beautiful veranda, grand dining room and classic four-poster beds. Outside, a sparkling pool offers the perfect spot to cool off and there’s a dual-level roof terrace with views across Galle Fort. Thanks to the tropical gardens surrounding the villa, this feels like your own secret Sri Lankan hideaway. Priced from £450 per night based on 10 sharing on a B&B basis.