Tried, tested and approved by A-list celebs from Kate Moss to Alicia Vikander and Uma Thurman, these are the perfect European escapes if you’re looking for a boutique island stay. Achingly stylish with a go-slow attitude, these perfectly private, boutique beauties promise to sweep you away from the hustle and bustle of daily life and allow you to enjoy your island retreat just like the stars. Here are 3 of the best…
The Beachy Beauty
Lapped by sapphire shallows, this cool Cycladic stay borrows its soft, neutral palette from the silken stretch of coast it’s perched upon. Bamboo beds, rickety wooden walkways and fray-edged hammocks lend the place an earthy, stripped-back aesthetic, though rest assured it delivers on substance as well as style.
From the ocean-gazing pergolas set right on the sand, the people-watching is superb, and salt-rimmed margaritas are but a wave of the hand away. Michelin-starred chef Lefteris Lazarou consults on the menu at chilled-out Tortuga, the hotel’s outstanding restaurant; the oil-drizzled Greek salads couldn’t be better, and the sticky, sweet baklava is worth the trip alone.
The island’s quaint capital Chora is an hour’s amble away, but nobody could blame you for staying put. The hotel is supremely hip with a pull that’s almost magnetic, and though there’s no pool, it’s no hardship to hit the beach (far right) and cool off in the rippling Aegean.
Model Josephine Skriver has explored the Cyclades.
Mr & Mrs Smith offers rooms at Naxian on the Beach from £168 per night; visit mrandmrssmith.com. Aegean Airlines flies from London to Naxos via Athens from £460 return; visit aegeanair.com.
The Hippie Hideout
A hop, skip and a jump away from oh-so-charming Santa Gertrudis, at the heart of Ibiza, sits an impeccably restored farmhouse full of soul. The gardens are a verdant jumble of palms and carob trees, the suites are the ideal antidote to the scorching sun, and some of the island’s most beguiling coves are but a short, scenic drive away.
Kickstart the day with a suitably strong cortado – best enjoyed in the chiffon-swathed cabana – then cycle along to the Forada farmers’ market to stockpile artisan-made hierbas, a herbal liqueur. Back at Cas Gasi, lunches are relaxed alfresco affairs starring bounty fresh from the hotel’s organic vegetable plots.
There’s a canopied yoga deck should you bohemian hideaway of the very best kind. You’ll be looking for an excuse to return well before you’ve even left the island.
Rooms at Cas Gasi begin at €325 (approx £292) per night; visit casgasi.com. Easyjet flies from London Luton to Ibiza from £156 return; visit easyjet.com.
The Serene Escape
Beauty abounds at Principe di Salina, a mere whoosh across the water from Sicily. Occupying an idyllic stretch of the volcanic Salina island, it’s ever so peaceful, with whitewashed walls, drapes that billow gently in the breeze and a soothing mountain backdrop.
The light-filled interiors are dotted with an abundance of rattan rugs and huge terracotta vases, and the bedrooms – each with its own shady patio – and have a chilled, beach-house feel.
While away hours beside the infinity pool (below) or take to the waves for an afternoon of cove-hopping. Whether it’s an itsy-bitsy motorboat you want or a whopping great yacht, the concierge will see to it pronto. Then it’s back to base to catch the sunset on the terrace, watching as the sky turns a mesmerising pinky lilac.
Rooms at Principe di Salina begin at €160 (approx £144) per night; visit principedisalina.it. British Airways flies from London to Catania from £88 return; visit ba.com. Take a bus to Milazzo where Liberty Lines runs hydrofoils to Salina from £46.79; visit directferries.co.uk.