9 independent reviews for Andalucia villa near Malaga, Spain

Reviews for Andalucia villa near Malaga, Spain

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review 27 Aug 2021

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

As soon as we arrived at the villa, the beauty of the place and the surrounding countryside took our breath away. The sense of seclusion and peace was just wonderful. Then heading up to the private pool, which offers even more spectacular views all around as well as of course offering the welcome chance to bask in the sun and cool off in the water; bliss! We were more than content to spend the bulk of our week's stay relaxing up at the pool, enjoying the scenery, the weather and the water.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

It is essential that your party contain at least one confident driver. This was our first time driving outside of the UK, and driving on the other side of the road proved nerve-wracking enough even before we reached the winding mountain-side roads that lead up to the villa itself. Once there, even the closest shops and restaurants are only accessible by about a 15 minute drive, whilst the beach town Torre del Mar is about 30 minutes, and Malaga itself is about an hour. These are literally all the places we went during our stay, as we were more than happy to mostly stay at the villa, but if you're more keen to go exploring and sightseeing, be prepared to drive a lot; to the best of our knowledge public transport is pretty much non-existent nearby.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

We mostly shopped and ate locally. The villa itself seemed very energy efficient; the owners had left instructions reminding us to avoid over-use of water due to being based in a drought region. There are also solar panels on the roof, so the villa clearly gets at least some of its energy from renewable sources. We were also informed that due to the remote location, the Spanish government put restrictions on electricity consumption, so we were cautioned not to have too many electrical devices in use at any one time. This wasn't a problem for us at all.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Coming here was easily the best choice we have ever made for a family vacation. We're a family of four, and as our children are getting older than can be a bit harder to please (other parents will surely relate!), but they absolutely loved the villa, and cherished being able to play in the pool all day every day. For the times back at the villa, the strong wi-fi connection ensured the kids were always content! The villa also has an astonishing abundance of books on a wide variety of subjects, as well as a substantial music and DVD library and a decent selection of board games, so there's no shortage of things to do. We're also animal lovers, so the occasional visits from the owner's cat were very welcome, and seeing various lizards crawling by outside was always a thrill. We had originally booked to visit the villa back in August 2020, but thanks to Covid-19 we were forced to delay, but the owners Shane and Bea were extremely helpful and considerate and let us push it back 12 months at no extra cost. On our first day we took a slightly hairy wrong turn on our way there and got a bit lost on a precarious dirt track: Shane happened to call us at that moment (noticing we were late in arriving), and was good enough to drive down and meet us to guide us directly to the villa. During our stay Shane and Bea were always available via Whatsapp to give us any handy hints and assistance; while their cottage is on the villa grounds, we only saw them on occasion, they were never in any way intrusive and they were always very warm and friendly. We'd waited a long time to take this vacation, and particularly after the insanity of 2020-2021, the wait was more than worth it. Truly, the villa is the loveliest place we have ever stayed, and looking through the guest book it didn't come as much surprise that some people have chosen to come back multiple times. We're very tempted to do the same, but regardless of whether we return it was an extremely special vacation which we will never forget.

review 22 Sep 2019

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

The situation and set up and facilities of the villa.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

None just enjoy.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes indeed. The owners are committed to engery reduction and recycling in particular.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?


review 7 Sep 2019

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

The quiet, the view!!!, the spectacular pool and the amazing spaces to relax in (wrap around patio, balcony, view points by pool, inside space, large kitchen etc.).

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Make sure you follow the directions (!) or you will be sorry (we doubles the journey time), make sure you do a big shop on the way in, there is a Lidl and a great shopping center 30ish mind away, basically it is very remote so not easy to ďpop outĒ. Also itís on a narrow dirt track so I would get a decent hire car - ours struggled with the drive! Also if you want to visit the Alhambra at Granada book way ahead as we drove there and could get in!

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Absolutely. We tried to eat in local remote restraurants, we were careful about water usage and electricity and supported the owners in renting the villa (which is their house out of season). We also only bought what we needed ie local produce and tried to reduce waste. We also drank tap water - not completely advisable due to lime but we didnít want to buy plastic bottles and were absolutely fine (including children) and taste was fine.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

It is off the beaten track. Good 30 mins min to beach / best beach is more like 50 mins. If you can handle the remoteness and are content to take it easy this is the place for you. Way always from the lively resorts and feels more like real spain with real locals.

review 4 Sep 2019

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

Views of mountains from the pool and seeing lots of geckos!

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Car is essential

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

It benefited local people - we visited lots of local villages and spent money at restaurants, visitor attractions and shops .

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Very good.

review 16 Jun 2018

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

It was memorable driving up towards the mountains and along a track to Villa Amapola which is situated amidst countryside with fabulous views in all directions. The house is wonderful, beautifully appointed with a huge kitchen. The terraces are very relaxing with shade and sun as desired. There are pots of plants in profusion and attractive shrubs and trees. There is a huge variety of colourful wild flowers beside the villa. We loved our daily visit to the pool.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Take advice from the owners! We enjoyed meals at recommended restaurants and otherwise self catered with meat from the excellent local butcher. The baker's shop has delicious bread and pastries. The villa is perfect for relaxing but there are many possible excursions by car.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes, we spent money in local shops and restaurants. There is a compost bin available and recycling facilities locally.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

A perfect location for a relaxing vacation in a lovely villa with a stunning location.

review 8 May 2018

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

The snake in the swimming pool! Most memorable was the beautiful view from the house, the comfortable furnishings, the brilliant book & dvd collection and the wood fires, all of which made us feel so at home and quite glad of the rain for giving us an excuse to cosy up together and read.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Take slippers for the tiled floors if you get cold feet.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes. Good recycling. We shopped at the local shops and we were welcomed at the local olive harvest fiesta.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Excellent. 5/5

review 22 Oct 2014

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

The amazing view of the mountains and the different places to enjoy the sunshine depending on the time of day. We also loved the house and the amazing collection of books to flick through. Had an amazing time.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

The amazing location is the best part of this vacation. Getting a higher category of hire car to take on the road and hills is something I can recommend. It was something we appreciated.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

We really felt that we got to know this area of southern Spain thanks to our hosts especially by buying local produce. The surrounding gardens encouraged wildlife and water and energy was conserved.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Really great time. We'd love to go back.

review 22 Jun 2014

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

Apart from the first time we set eyes on La Amapola, it has to be sitting outside with a gin & tonic in the evening sun, as the silky voice of Chet Baker poured out of the kitchen speakers. It just doesn't get much better than that! We were also intrigued by the chain outside the kitchen door. A few of the local bees seemed to love sleeping on it every evening. Nice to see that they feel welcome somewhere!

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Make sure you arrive with enough shopping for at least a few days. Shane & Bea provide a nice welcome basket, but with such a lovely villa and surroundings, it's good to be able to leave when you want to. Also, you really don't need to bring any books. Shane & Bea have a fantastic collection throughout the villa, and we could have easily taken a month off and worked our way through it!

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes. The welcome basket had all sorts of local produce in it, and in addition, Shane & Bea kept a compost barrel and encouraged visitors to conserve water as much as possible. The 'Activities' section of their website promotes the services of local people too, and although we didn't get round to making use of them, it's nice to see that they are helping to promote their local community.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

You couldn't ask for a more idyllic location, or more welcoming hosts. Shane met us at the villa when we arrived and gave us a quick run through the basics, while Bea would always let us know when she was around to water the plants (twice during the week), a much appreciated sign of the type of consideration they show towards their guests. Other than that, you simply wouldn't know there was anyone there but yourselves. The villa itself felt really homely, which makes a big difference, and helps you relax much quicker. You can tell that a lot of thought has gone into what people might find useful - DVDs, board games, books, music, utensils - it all feels designed to welcome you in. The only slightly negative thing we experienced was an annoying number of flies up at the pool, which at certain times of the day made it difficult to be there. It may have been due to the time of year, or to the nearby farm, but it is certainly no reflection on the efforts made by Shane & Bea to make our stay a lovely one. I would, however, recommend mosquito nets over the beds, as it makes for a nice relaxing sleep, should any of those little pests find a way in! All in all, I have no hesitation in recommending La Amapola for anyone wanting a breather, surrounded by beauty, in a real home away from home. With a gorgeous private pool to boot!

review 17 Jul 2013

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

The peaceful setting, serene surroundings and the warm and gracious hospitality of our hosts, Shane and Bea, are our fondest memories. From the moment we arrived until the minute we left, two weeks later, we rarely thought of our hectic, fast-paced life back home. The villa is a one-of-a-kind gem and we feel very fortunate to have been able to spend two weeks relaxing there and being wowed by the beautiful vistas and sunsets that greeted us every day and every evening.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

We highly recommend a day trip to The Alhambra in Granada. It is essential to make your reservations on line beginning 90 days in advance. We also recommend a day trip to Ronda, the Malaga Market, Nerja, and Frigiliana. Shane and Bea were very helpful with suggestions for excursions, shopping, restaurants, and general information about the Andalusia region.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes. We made use of the local recycle bins and we collected compost for Bea to use in her garden. We did our best to conserve water and to support local merchants.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

On a scale of 1-10, with 10 being the highest, we would rate the vacation as a very strong 10. We would highly recommend it to others. We hope to keep in touch with Shane and Bea. They are a lovely couple and we're so happy that our paths have crossed. The next time we are looking for a villa to rent, we will definitely check with responsiblevacation.com to see what they offer in the country where we are traveling.

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