Picture it: Sicily, 2022. At sunset on a hilltop overlooking the Ionian Sea, two friends meet to share the love of three things: pizza, pasta and burrata salad.
Close to the ancient town of Taormina is the Villa Grecale; a stunning five bedroom villa sprawled across two floors with a private pool and more sun drenched terraces than you’ll know what to do with. It’s a blissful escape, perched high on a hill above the world below, with a view to die for.
We’ve been flying the digital nomad flag since the very beginning of House of Coco and have become accustomed to working from wherever we can - departure lounges, coffee shops, beaches, poolside cabanas, and the rest. In a post pandemic world, working from home has become universally acceptable, but here’s the thing, does it matter which home you work from?
TeamCoco checked in to the Villa Grecale for the ultimate work-cation - laptops and emails by day, wine and sunsets by night.
A day in the life of a work-cation at Villa Grecale:
8am: Soak up the morning sun and enjoy coffee and fresh fruit on the villa’s terrace overlooking the Ionian Sea and the ancient town of Taormina.
9am: Laptop out and start work. Station yourself in the villa’s upstairs living room to make the most of the 360 floor-to-ceiling windows and take in that view while you boss your to-do list.
11am: By now you might feel your energy flagging. Nothing will get the adrenaline pumping like a jump in the pool. Dry yourself off, get a snack and head back to work.
1pm: It’s lunch time and you’re in Italy. How about a caprese salad? Level up by switching out the mozzarella for burrata and now we’re talking. Sit poolside in the garden and wash your lunch down with some fresh Sicilian lemonade.
2pm: Back to work! Head down into the villa’s main dining room to escape the heat and the sun. Throw on some feel good tunes to see you through the afternoon and don’t forget to keep fuelled on Sicily’s most famous dessert - cannolis.
4.30pm: Your productivity should be at its peak, so you can get away with finishing a bit early and going for a swim.
7:00pm: Park yourself on the terrace and keep the Aperol Spritz coming - the perfect aperitivo.
8:00pm: Dinner is served! Enjoy the experience of eating out with the convenience of going absolutely nowhere by having fresh local meals prepared for you right there in your own kitchen.
9:00pm: Watch the sunset over the sea with some Prosecco and limoncello, before retiring to bed and getting ready to do the whole thing again tomorrow.
Beats sitting in the office, right?
What to do in and around Villa Grecale:
All work and no play? Never. #TeamCoco are never too far away from the action. Here’s our recommended to-do list during your stay.
Vintage Car Tour
The town of Taormina and its little sister, Castelmola are some of the most beautiful and must-see locations in Sicily. Let nostalgia be your guide, and take a tour in a vintage Fiat 500 through the winding hill roads. Stop for a coffee in the picturesque hilltop commune of Castelmola, and take in some of the area’s more hidden sights, like the Chiesa Madonna della Rocca - a 400 year old church actually built into the living rock of the hill.
Tao Beach Club
The Ionian coast of Sicily is proud of its white sandy beaches. Elevate your experience by checking in at the Tao Beach Club - the most exclusive corner of Taormina. Walk on the beach, swim in the sea, and enjoy lunch and drinks service in your own private beachfront cabana. If you still have some energy to burn, try some paddle boarding or thrust into top gear on a jet-ski.
Private In-Villa Chef
Villa Grecale comes complete with its own kitchen with everything you could possibly need to whip up your own dinner, but where’s the fun in that? Local chefs are on hand to cook for you in your own kitchen for 100% of the enjoyment and 0% of the stress. Try some local dishes like swordfish rolls or arancini.
Sicily’s Catania International Airport is about an hour away by car, and has regular flights in and out of the UK. While the town feels close enough to reach out and touch, the long and winding road will take you the best part of two hours, so car hire is highly recommended, as local taxis aren’t easy to come by - and you’d have more luck on a magic carpet than trying to get an Uber.
Book your stay
Grecale features 4 bedrooms and sleeps 8 guests, available through Villatravellers from 4,300 EUR per week