PHOTO: Italy topped Villas of Distinction's list of the hottest destinations for villa rentals. Photo courtesy of Thinkstock
Italy, Hawaii, Jamaica, St. John, and Florida are this year’s most popular villa vacation destinations, according to Villas of Distinction.
The company, a full-service luxury villa rental company that is part of World Travel Holdings, offers customized vacations planned by villa specialists. Personal concierges tailor clients’ vacations from start to finish.
“Many of these destinations are trending as a result of increased bookings from families, in particular, multi-generational families that are choosing a villa over a resort stay,” said Steve Lassman, vice president of villa product and agency relations for Villas of Distinction.
“As multi-generational family travel continues to explode, we see Orlando, Fla. as an up-and-coming destination in 2017 as families are looking for the space, privacy and value a villa provides,” Lassman added.
“Families are also drawn to the value our Jamaica villas offer, which includes a full staff included in the price of the villa stay.”
The company said this about the leading destinations:
- Italy – “This is our strongest destination in terms of bookings,” said Lassman. “The fact that the Euro and U.S. dollar are almost on par is good for business to Europe, especially Italy. In addition, Italy continues to be a captivating destination for travelers and currently the airfare is under $1,000 per person, which makes it even more attractive.”
- Hawaii – “Villas of Distinction is seeing substantial growth in Hawaii, in particular, the Big Island and Maui,” according to Lassman. “Vacationers who have experienced the Caribbean and are looking for an alternative warm-weather destination with breathtaking views and a slew of outdoor activities are considering Hawaii. In addition, it is always a popular bucket list destination.”
- Jamaica – A villa vacation to Jamaica continues to provide the best value of any Caribbean villa experience, according to the company. Staff—including a chef, butler, housekeeper and laundress—are included in the cost of most Jamaica villas. In addition, the island has so many activities to offer from snorkeling, scuba diving, hiking and horseback riding to climbing the world-famous 600-foot-high Dunn's River Falls or enjoying Jamaica’s 27 native species at the Rocklands Feeding Station.
- St. John – “Villa bookings to this area are up 20 percent year-over-year,” Lassman said. “For people who want to stay within a U.S. territory, St. John offers the best variety of villas of the three islands, and is less frequented by first-time travelers to the U.S. Virgin Islands.”
- Florida – Orlando is one of the most popular destinations for families and multi-generational travelers. In 2016, Villas of Distinction added an array of villas in Orlando located in Reunion Resort and Encore Club Resort, close to the major theme parks and featuring a host of championship golf courses designed by professional golf legends. The kid-friendly luxury homes range from five to 14 bedrooms and include a wide range of amenities from private home theaters, game rooms/arcades and even a bowling alley to private swimming pools, summer kitchens and fitness rooms.
Last year’s leading villa vacation destinations were:
- Riviera Maya
- Punta Mita
- Dominican Republic