Updated: October 21, 2016
Renting a Villa on Santorini
Renting a villa or house is a great choice if you’re staying longer than a week – shorter than that and I don’t think it’s worth the effort (and some villas have a minimum stay). Be prepared for sticker shock however. True private villas come in two price ranges: Expensive and Insanely Expensive.
Here are some tips for choosing and booking a holiday villa.
- In general, stay in a villa if you are staying longer than a week or are traveling with a large group. But the best hotels on Santorini are stunning and not many villas match them for luxury, convenience, and views.
- It takes more effort to rent a villa than to book a hotel. That’s not to say it takes hours and hours of research but be prepared for a little more time to plan your stay.
- Reconfirm your reservation (at least once). If you book a villa 6 months in advance double checking the dates with the owner 3 months later and then again a week before your arrival is a good plan.
- Booking.com is the best site to use for renting villas. Like with booking hotels, the site has verified guest reviews so you’re not reading fake reviews written by the owners.
- Flipkey.com/Santorini also has many. They’re owned by Tripadvisor so listings on one will show on the other. When you book through Flipkey you get a $10,000 guarantee on your payment so you don’t have to worry about being scammed.
- Most private villas are located in Oia. Villas in Fira tend to be part of a hotel.
- Check and double check the location of any villa. Many look like they’re close to the main towns (or close to the beach) but are out in the middle of nowhere. Which can be fine, but obviously good to know what you’re getting. If you can’t get a good feel on where it’s located ask me and I’ll take a look.
- Book early. People plan trips to Santorini months (sometimes years) in advance. Hotels fill early in the year, and villas get booked even earlier.
- If you’re paying the owner upon arrival you’ll often need to pay cash, even if you booked online and used a credit card to reserve the villa.
- Weddings and wedding receptions are common at villas and rental homes. If you need more info ask the owner.
The 21 Best Villas on Santorini
Most of these rentals have full kitchens. Some have internet, washer/dryer, and either a pool or jacuzzi. Book very early in the year as the best places fill up more than 6 months in advance.
Grace Santorini Villa with Private Pool – Imerovigli – Check Availability
Part of the Grace hotel but with its own private pool and huge living area and deck. It’s the best of both worlds: the convenience and service of a hotel with the privacy of a private villa. The best villa on Santorini.
Oia Mansion – Oia – Check Availability
This is a marvelous villa for larger groups perfectly located in central Oia. Good restaurants within steps. Incredible views. Huge kitchen and hot tub.
Windmill Villas – Imerovigli – Check Availability
White Pearl Villas – Oia – Check Availability
Virginia Traditional Cave Houses – Oia – Check Availability
SeaHorse Residence – Firostefani – Check Availability
Pegasus Villas – Imerovigli – Check Availability
Onar Villas – Oia – Check Availability
Kastro Oia Houses – Oia – Check Availability
Fira White Residences – Fira – Check Availability
Villa Estelle – Imerovigli – Check Availability
Celestia Grand – Fira – Check Availability
Blue Canaves Luxury Villa – Oia – Check Availability
Blue Angel Villa – Fira – Check Availability
Villa Ariadni – Oia – Check Availability
Anemi House – Oia – Check Availability
Anema Residences – Imerovigli – Check Availability
And 4 More Villas
The villas below are on Flipkey which I don’t like quite as much as booking.com (the ones above) – but if they’re fully booked (which often happens) these are good to know about.