|Abercrombie & Kent
||A&K have a villas division. It is still sometimes refered to as 'A&K Chapters' because in Oct 02 they bought the luxury villa specialist brand 'International Chapters' and with it an amazing portfolio of around 2,000 stunning luxury properties in exotic locations all over the world - many of them with maid service, nearly all with pools, and most with a serious price tag.
||020 7616 9990
||Villa rentals in mainland France, Corsica, Croatia and Portugal. Affair Travel is a well-established operator, with an ATOL licence, that has been around since November 1986 when as 'French Affair' (renamed in 2010) it specialised in villas just in Southern France. Booking can be done on line or by phone.
||020 8977 7079
||Villas, gîtes and cottages in Aquitaine, SW France.
||Specialists in villas in the Algarve (Portugal).
||01306 876 876
||Around 500 privately-owned holiday properties, mostly with pools. You book direct with the English-speaking owners. BV also offer the travel services needed to complete the package such as ferry booking, stoppover hotels and travel insurance. They also feature a selection of traditional Bed & Breakfast hotels (chambres d'hôtes).The website looks ok in IE...looks rubbish in Chrome though!
||Longstanding independent specialist in French farmhouses and villas, set up by Carol Bowhill over 30 years ago (June 04) and now aquired by the Hoseasons group.
|Brittany Ferries Holidays
||08705 360 360
||Brittany Ferries' The French Collection 2004 brochure features 400+ pages of villas, gîtes, chateaux, chalets, cottages & apartments, (as well as other holiday options such as hotels & campsites). Owners in France (see below) is also one of their brands.
||Self-catering holidays mostly in 'Green Spain' - Cantabria, Asturias, Picos de Europa, Galicia, and around Salamanca - and in Northern Portugal.
||0870 444 6600
||A portfolio of over 3000 privately-owned gites, villas, apartments, farmhouses, and other rental properties throughout France (their brochure is a fat one - over 500 pages!). Unlike a traditional operator/agency, you book your holiday home directly with the owners. But Chez Nous also offers other holiday components you might need such as ferry bookings, motorail, travel insurance, etc.
||0870 44 28 601
||Cosmos have a dedicated 'villas with pools' brochure featuring villas in the Algarve, Mainland Spain, Cyprus, Balearics, Canaries, Crete & Gozo.
|Cottages to Castles
||Villas, farmhouses and yes, castles, all over Italy and the Istrian coast of Croatia. Also a range of villas, beach houses, apartments and game lodges in South Africa.
||Small company specialising in villa rentals for North West Crete (Chania area). All villas are well equipped and the majority have a private pool. Their portfolio has grown organically from one villa (their own) in 2002 when they launched, to around 40 now (2011).
||020 8329 0195
||A spin-off from the famous 'Daltons Weekly' advertising publication. Obvious move for them when you think about it! An online holiday property agency with a diverse range of properties all over Europe, North America, Asia and Africa.
||020 7738 8772
||Small specialist company handling around 140 individually selected chateaux & villas with pools throughout France, for over 16 years.
||Started offering rental properties on the Greek island of Chios and has expanded to offer properties "for independently minded" holiday-makers in Greece, Cyprus, Spain, Portugal, Majorca and the Caribbean
||A small villa agency run by a brother & sister team offering hand-picked villas, apartments and hotels in Italy, with an emphasis on customer service before, during and after a holiday.
||020 7112 0019
||Launched in 2003 specialising in villas and apartments (and boutique hotels) in South Africa. Has now (July 08) expanded to offer the same in Barbados, St Lucia, Tobago, Thailand, Bali, Sri Lanka, and Morocco.
||A small number of villas & apartments in Greece, Spain, Italy and South Africa
|GIC The Villa Collection
||020 8232 9780
||Extensive collection of villas all over Greece and Cyprus. Formerly known as the 'Greek Islands Club', GIC is a Sunvil company and an AITO member.
||0844 232 2323
||A small specialist villa company (UK registered but operated from France), offering a good selection of villas with pools in France and Italy. All villas (some are lovely - Ed) and their owners are known personally to the company.
|Hip Holidays Ibiza
||01451 489 001
||Specialises in spectacular luxury villas on the island of Ibiza (Spain).
|Holiday Cottages Group
||08700 789 789
||A giant range of holiday homes in the UK, France, Ireland, Spain and Portugal. Their main online persona is Cottages4you (£), but their other brands include French Life, Chez Nous, Welcome Cottages, Individual Travellers, and Blakes....plus a whole 'dogs breakfast' of sub-brands!
|Holiday France Direct
||0870 9013 400
||Book privately owned villas, farm house, chateaux, hotels, houseboats, studios, apartments, and mobile homes, direct with their owners. Properties located throughout France and a handful in Spain. HFD changed its name from 'Owners in France' in 2007. Part of Brittany Ferries Holidays. Changed
||Online database of 10,000 holiday homes in Spain, France, Italy, Turkey, Cyprus, Portugal, Florida and 70 other countries worldwide to book from owners direct.
||Holiday-Rentals is now part of the giant US HomeAway group, with 210,000 properties worldwide.
||0844 847 1234
|| Villas with pools in Spain, France, Portugal, Italy, Malta, Turkey and Cyprus.
||020 8544 6401
||Spin-off from the Iglu ski website. Villas in Italy, France, Greece, Turkey, Portugal & Spain
||0845 675 2601
||Luxury villas and farmhouses, mostly with private pools in rural locations, in Italy, Spain, Turkey, Portugal and Madeira.
||Tailor-made holidays, including golf holidays, in privately owned villas and apartments at the western end of the Algarve.
||020 8877 6370
||Longstanding (since 1965) provider of self-catering holiday accommodation throughout Europe with over 32,000 holiday properties in 30 countries. Interhome is a member of ABTA and operates a strict inspection code on all properties.
|Italian Rentals 4U
||Hand-picked Italian villas and apartments particularly Sicily.
|James Villa Holidays
||Villa specialist with numerous properties in Tenerife, Portugal, Spain, Cyprus, Corfu, Malta, Italy and Florida.
|Just Luxury Villas
||Online agency specialising in luxury villas and holiday homes to rent worldwide. Part of The Villa Group.
||Villa rental agency with 200 luxury villas in the south of France and 30 chalets in the French Alps.
||Privately owned villas, cottages and apartments for short-term holiday rental in Goa, India.
|Little Domain, The
||Sister site to the Big Domain (see above) but specialising in rental cottages and hideaways for two, in the UK and abroad.
|Mallorca Farmhouse Holidays
||0118 947 3001
||Small family-managed company offering luxurious, 4 and 5 star private villas and farmhouses on Mallorca originally, and now in the Caribbean too. The name has been simplified to 'Mallorca Farmhouses', to match with the new brand name, 'Caribbean Villas' for their portfolio on Barbados & St. Lucia.
||A portfolio of around 500 private villas with pools in the Algarve, Corfu, Costa Blanca, Costa del Sol, Crete, Cyprus, Dordogne, Florida, Gozo, Gran Canaria, Ibiza, La Manga Club, Lanzarote, Lisbon, Majorca, Malta, Menorca, South of France, St Lucia and Tuscany. Scuba diving options in Gozo & Crete were added in the 2003 programme, and new villas in the Languedoc region of France. For 2004, Meon added Corsica and Kefalonia to their list of destinations. Meon had been an independent operator since 1964, but in 1999 became a part of the First Choice group who also own Sovereign Villas. Many of Meon's upmarket villas have now been incorporated into Sovereign's portfolio of properties. The strategy is that Meon will will become 'direct-sell', while Sovereign Villas will be sold through travel agencies.
|Mirador Villa Holidays
||Mirador Villa Holidays has a hand-selected portfolio of private villas, apartments and small hotels in Greece, Italy, Spain, Morocco, Bali and the Caribbean - particularly USVI & BVI (including one that stands out, on Anegada, but then anything would stand out on Anegada! Ed).
|One Off Places
|| A (mostly) rental property website, launched Sept 09 to rave reviews for specialising in apartments, villas, cabins, tents, wagons, houseboats, windmills, treehouses, etc, with something unique about them - their design, their history, their location, their decoration, whatever... (I may be picky but the only downside for me is that they still hide their address, which is usually not a good sign.)
||020 7801 9801
||OS have branched out from their original business (privately-owned, up-market holiday rental homes in the Caribbean) to offering houses, villas, and hotel resorts in France, Italy, Portugal, Spain, Morocco, and Mauritius.
|Palmer & Parker
||Villa specialists in France, Marbella, Majorca, the Algarve and the Caribbean (Barbados, St. Lucia, Jamaica).
||Very much at the top end of the scale. If you need an English country house, an Italian castle, a town house in LA, or anything up to an estate on the beach in Mexico that sleeps 70, these are the guys for you!
|Private Properties Abroad
||A large range of magnificent country houses, villas, chateaux, and converted farmhouses in France, Italy and Spain (Balearic Islands)
||Launched in Jan 2010 and now offers over 27,000 holiday homes (villas, chalets, cottages and apartments) worldwide from agents and private individuals.
||01442 870 055
||Quality villas is a family-run business set up by Margaret Rees in 1986, specialising in luxury villas, farmhouses and chateaux with private pools, in coastal and rural France and Italy.
|Self Catering Hols.com
||Online villa agency with privately-owned properties in over 20 countries worldwide including South Africa, Turkey, Cyprus, Canada, Scotland, Croatia, Spain & Barbados.
||029 2064 7505
||A selection of special villas to rent in Spain, France, Austria, Vietnam, Morocco & the Netherlands. Previously called La Perla Living Rentals. (They seem to have dropped Italy & Antigua from their portfolio - Ed)
||Over 300 cottages in some of the most scenic locations in Ireland with ferry & car hire packages.
||0870 381 3000
||Private villas with pools in the Balearics, Canaries, Italy, Cyprus, Malta, Spain & Portugal.
||08703 661 634
||Sister brand to Meon Villas (see above).
|Spirit of Greece
||01372 749 579
||Greek villas and apartments in Paxos, Lefkas, Kefalonia, Lesvos and Halki. SoG is a villa only agency but has recently teamed up with Sky Value Ltd, an ATOL and ABTA protected flight specialist.
||0845 230 22 23
||Apartments, Cottages, Farmhouses & Villas in Tuscany & Umbria
||020 8568 4499
||Sunvil do so much these days it's easy to forget that their original core product is still villas in Greece and Cyprus.
||Small specialist holiday-rental company offering 150 character properties from fisherman’s cottages to luxurious villas in three regions of France: Brittany, Cote d'Azur and the Auvergne.
||020 8144 0482
||A large collection of luxury villas to rent across Thailand in Koh Samui, Phuket, Krabi and Koh Phangan. Established for over 10 years and family run. Each villa is inspected in person before being added to the site. ABTA bonded.
| Thomas Cook Style Collection
||0844 879 8442
|| Upmarket villas with pools on mainland Spain, The Balearics & the Canary Islands, the Algarve, Greece, Cyprus, Crete, Turkey, Gozo and Florida.
||0871 231 4691
|| TUI/Thomsons group built this brand back in 2004 from the portfolios and expertise of two independent villa specialists in particular: OSL & Something Special. The 25-year-old OSL had a portfolio of over 250 villas with private pools in the Algarve, Corfu, Costa Blanca, Costa del Sol, Cyprus, Lanzarote, Menorca, and Kefalonia. Something Special (I remember them back in the late eighties - Ed) had a portfolio of 1,000 villas particularly in Florida but also around the Mediterranean. So plenty of expertise and choice here, but now fully subsumed into the corporate giant.
||020 8343 2590
||Self-catering properties in the most popular regions of the Italian mainland, and Sardinia & Sicily....plus one property in France.
|To Escape To
||0871 711 5282
||Set up in 2003 by Ingram Casey and Tom Corcoran to offer long-haul villa holidays and personalised travel arrangements to Southern Africa, Kenya, Tanzania, Zanzibar, Mauritius, Seychelles, Mozambique and Botswana. Their website is notably easy to use and won a 'Best Tour Operator Website' award in June 06.
|Tots To France
||020 8123 4511
||Small online lettings agency specialising in toddler-friendly rental accommodation in France.
|Tots to Travel
||0870 458 5528
||Online agency specialising in villas for families with toddlers in France and Italy. They check out safety standards at each property and make sure they are fully kitted out with all the baby and child equipment families need, from cots and highchairs, to sterilisers, blenders, toys, potties and more. Also babysitting is available at most properties.
||07776 250 381
||A small number of apartments and villas in/around the Umbrian village of Panicale.
|Under The Thatch
||0844 5005 101
|| Hand-picked selection of special properties to rent in Europe (mostly UK), especially quirky & environmentally cool properties like a modern eco-croft in Scotland, woodland cabins, a cave house in Spain and several gypsy caravans.
||01242 240 340
||Several hundred holiday properties of all kinds, many with pools, in France.
|Villa Agency, The
||01392 424 400
||Villas with pools in Portugal
|Villa Book, The
||0845 500 2000.
||A portfolio of over 1,000 luxury villas and city apartments worldwide. (One to watch. Why? Because the man behind it, Edward Marquis, is the guy who created the 'top dog' in luxury villa rentals, International Chapters, which became part of Abercrombie & Kent. This is him setting out on his own again. Ed)
||A portfolio of around 60+ villas with private pools in France, Spain, and Italy.
|Villa Company, The
||0845 052 0660
||Thirty years experience providing holiday villas with private pools in Florida, Spain, Italy France (also self catering ski chalets in France) and Portugal's Algarve.
|Villa Holiday Centre, The
||Holiday villas in the Azores, the Algarve & Praia del Rey region (North of Lisbon) of Portugal, rural France, Malaysia and Bali. They have their own ATOL license (unusual for villa companies) and so can offer protected packages with flights.
||Large number of villas (450+), mostly with pools, in Portugal, Lanzerote, Cyprus, Kefalonia, Crete, Mallorca, and Menorca.
||Villas in the Algarve (Portugal) and Costa del Sol (Spain).
||U.S. web rental company with offices in the UK (and priced in sterling). They have a large number of villas in over 30 countries.
||Online villa agency launched in 2003 and now part of Teletext Holidays and Daily Mail & General Trust Plc, with over 13,000 holiday homes in 85 countries.
||0870 013 3979
||Specialise in rental of luxury villas with pools and apartments in Portugal, Andalucia, Mallorca, Menorca, Croatia, Barbados and Florida.
||Florida villa specialist. Lists hundreds of villas across Florida, including the Keys, to rent direct from the owners.
|Villas de Maitre
||Tailor made luxury villa holidays in the Indian Ocean for over 19 years (2013), with properties in Mauritius, Seychelles, Zanzibar and Mozambique.
||Small specialist villa company offering carefully selected villas with pools on the Algarve, Cyprus, Costa Blanca, Menorca, Mallorca and the Greek islands of Kefalonia, Crete & Zante.
||0845 241 7733
||Launched in April 05, an online villa agency offering apartments and villas with pools in Mallorca, Tenerife, Corfu, Cyprus, Ireland and Florida. It was set up by Kathleen O'Brian who used to be with Something Special which got swallowed up by Thomsons.
||Villa holiday specialist offering villas in France, Spain, Portugal, Greece, Italy, Indonesia/Bali, South Africa and the Caribbean.
||Villa specialists since 1989 in France, Spain & Portugal and more recently, Croatia and Greece. Member of AITO.
||0870 850 1144
||The West Indies Management Company is a reservations and marketing company specialising in private holiday villas and distinctive small hotels in the Caribbean and now Europe.