With warm temperatures and sunshine for at least six months of the year, finding the right villa holiday in Sicily is as much about checking out the outdoor space as the villa interior. Not everyone needs a pool, but shady summer kitchens, garden gazebos and pergolas, and terraces with coastal views all add up to a great al fresco style holiday.
The following is a selection of some of the best Wish Sicily villas for outdoor living.
Garden dream: a poolside pergola, barbecue corner and a hidden away Jacuzzi with a view are just some of the highlights of four-bedroom Villa Costanza, perched on a hill above Cefalù on the coast of north Sicily. The 16m pool is a big hit but top spot goes to the two vast and exquisitely furnished first floor terraces, one with stylish white lounge-style sofas and armchairs, and the other with an über-chic dining area.
Palermo, Monreale and, for those who enjoy walking, the Madonie Mountains, are all within easy reach. A week at Villa Costanza starts at £2172 (sleeps 8) per week with Wish Sicily.
Summer living: Seriously sophisticated outdoor living spaces outnumber the indoor living rooms at the recently renovated Villa Malika. There are cool covered lounge and dining areas, with smooth dark timber decking, and views over landscaped gardens planted with huge palm trees, spiky cacti and succulents and the odd flower-filled pot. In the middle of the lawn, a poolside day-bed shrouded by billowing muslin drapes, is the perfect siesta spot.
Walk to Guidaloca beach or hop in the car to lively Castellammare del Golfo in western Sicily. Prices start at £1882 (sleeps 8) per week with Wish Sicily.
Beachfront bliss: Wander directly down to the beach from the lovely three-bedroom Villa La Playa on the outskirts of Cefalù or simply enjoy the sea view from a series of covered patios and terraces. There is a rosemary-scented outdoor kitchen and table tennis and spacious lawns for the kids. Interiors are rustic but elegant with scattered rugs and fabrics in warm earthy colours and antique furniture.
Prices at Villa la Playa start at £2069 (sleeps 6) per week with Wish Sicily.
The al fresco budget option: Gaze out over the Zingaro Nature Reserve and the sea from one of the two terraces at Villa Ginestra in western Sicily. There are coastal views from the first one and the second overlooks the pool area, with the bonus of an outdoor kitchen with barbecue, sink and a ceramic-tiled table. The Jacuzzi pool is tucked away amongst the garden’s towering palms and leafy plants.
Mazzo di Sciacca beach is 200m away or head for the seafront bars, restaurants and daily fish market at nearby Castellammare. Palermo, Monreale and the medieval hilltop town of Erice are all close by. A week at Villa Ginestra (sleeps 4) starts at £942, with 30% savings on holidays taken before the end of May with Wish Sicily.