Praises from the Press
The Times (New Zealand)
April 12, 2009, The Times, "Sifting Through Sands"
Q: We would like to rent a villa in Europe this summer. Could you give me some reputable
websites to try? — Angela van Dyk
A: Most companies advertise themselves as “villa” rental agencies, but offer a wide
range of properties including apartments, farmhouses, cottages and castles. Some
of the popular ones are www.Rentvillas.com... However, make sure you know what you
are being offered, by checking on the number of bedrooms (as opposed to number of
beds), the conditions of the [security] deposit refund (and the time it takes) and
exact distance to the nearest shops or towns.
Forrester Research Says We're Human!
…At least, according to
Josh Bernoff of Forrester Research!
“I am a Rentvillas customer. Traveling to another country where everything
is different — the power outlets, the language, the time they eat lunch —
is scary and intimidating, especially if you vacation with your children. In this
frame of mind, I found Rentvillas four years ago, when planning a trip to France.
I used them again for my
trip to Italy this September. And I have to say, this is a company that
acts like a human, and treats me like a human, in ways that surprised and pleased
If you’d like a bit of an inside peek at how RentVillas.com operates “behind
check out the article here.
The Province (Canada)
November 30, 2008, The Province, "Rent abroad with care"
"Q: We are planning to rent a Tuscany villa for five adults and three children next
fall. Could you advise us on the most economical and safe way to organize the trip?
I have seen villas advertised on the Internet but am worried about deposits, authenticity
of pictures and information.
A: There are a few things you can do to minimize potential problems. Here are a
- As a rule, rent from an established company, not an individual.
- Insist on a contract.
- Ask the company how long it's been in business. Run its name by the tourism office
of the country you're visiting.
- To make communication easier, consider using a rental company with offices in North
America. Examples: RentVillas.com...
- Use only agencies that publish photos of their properties. Yes, photos can be misleading,
but at least you'll have an idea what the place looks like.
- Ask for references from past customers, and check them. Don't rent from a company
that refuses to put you in touch with its previous clients.
- When calculating cost, remember extra charges like agency fees, cleaning fees, electricity
bills and security deposit."
The New York Times
"...Likewise, rental management companies had something to say about the services
they provide, mostly, it seems, a dose of reality. 'Every owner believes his property
offers something special — which is the attitude you want an owner to have — but
the fact is, they sometimes don’t really notice the barking dog, the street noise,
or the out-of-the-way location,' wrote Nikki Hootman, who writes a newsletter for
Rentvillas.com, an agency specializing in rentals in Europe. 'The role of the agency
is to evaluate the property impartially and disclose the strengths and weaknesses
openly with the client.'..."
2, 2008, The New York Times, "Practical Traveler - Readers Sound Off on Private
The Atlanta Journal - Constitution
"Our gorgeous Tuscan farmhouse came courtesy of Rentvillas.com, whose staff was
quick to e-mail me detailed notes and driving directions. Our villa —- with three
bedrooms, two baths and room for six —- cost $1,944, including tax, for seven nights,
with utilities additional. At the end of our Saturday through Saturday morning stay,
the owners checked the meter and charged us $100 for the utilities. The villa we
booked is no longer available online, but there are countless other properties from
www.rentvillas.com, in all price ranges and sizes."
June 6, 2008, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, "A villa in Tuscany lives up to
Travel + Leisure Magazine
"This 24-year-old agency has recently expanded beyond France and Italy to four regions
in Turkey... A personal travel advisor helps clients select their ideal house."
February 2008, Travel + Leisure
Peter Greenberg - TodayShow.com
Dec 5, 2007, Peter Greenberg - TodayShow.com,
"Affordable European deals during the winter"
"Villas can be prohibitively expensive in the summer, but if the cost is split between
6-8 people, and if you go during the low season, you can strike a good deal.
Check out www.rentvillas.com, where rates drop almost by half in the low season.
A villa in the Val di Pesa region of South Florence, which can accommodate up to
6 people, starts at $585 a week — that’s just $97 per person! High season rates
are about $1,100 a week. This Tuscan villa is located in a rural area surrounded
by vineyards and olive groves. A medieval farmhouse in Val d'Elsa in the province
of Siena can accommodate up to six people, and even includes maid service. At $870
a week, compared to $1,690 in the high season, it’s an unbeatable deal. You might
have to bring your sweater, but you'll be Italy surrounded by your friends and family
in the Tuscan countryside."
"We found our French farmhouse in Grasse, about a half-hour north of Cannes, through
Rentvillas.com... that we all considered "perfect." Set on a hillside surrounded
by olive trees, the rental house was charming and economical. [The cost was] substantially
less than any hotel in the area."
May 2007, The Houston Chronicle, "10 Things to Do That Won't Break the Bank"
"At the top end are villas that come with housekeepers, cooks and kitchens fully
outfitted with cutting-edge appliances—not to mention Wi-Fi, satellite TV, PlayStation
and all the other technological toys people take for granted at home. A week in
May at the Villa sur Mer, a palace for hire on the Côte d'Azur with sweeping ocean
views and an English-speaking chef, goes for a cool $35,715 on Rentvillas.com."
May 2007, Newsweek
International, "The Comforts of Home"
New York Times
The best deals are in the spring and fall, when the crowds are gone for good. ...a
three-bedroom Tuscan villa, including housekeeping services, from Rentvillas.com...
[cost] $30 a day per person. "We were pleasantly surprised. The place was wonderful.”
April 2007, New York Times, "As Hotel Prices Rise, a Villa May Be a Bargain"
"One of the best agencies to call is Rentvillas.com. ...Its agents are very helpful
in tracking down the perfect place to suit your needs."
February 2006, Frommer's Florence, Tuscany, & Umbria, 5th Ed. Also at Frommers.com
"This top-of-the-line site virtually lets you stroll around a European villa before
you rent it. Loads of pictures for each property, descriptions of every floor, and
nearby attractions. ...BEST: You can ask questions-- anonymously-- to former renters
of the property. Also, the area maps are a cut above those on most sites, with roads
marked for easy automobile touring."
April 2006, Forbes Favorite pick for
"Rentvillas.com has almost 1,400 properties in Europe rated on a variety of criteria
by former guests."
Rent a villa and vacation like a jet-setter
Travel + Leisure
"Villas on this easy-to-use site are company-inspected and given ratings (one to
five stars) in seven categories-- from ambiance to location to amenities. There
are helpful reviews from previous guests in categories such as Enjoyed Most and
July 2005 Travel + Leisure,
"Vacation Rentals Made Easy - Our picks for the best rental sites"
"Customer service is a priority; a 'travel adviser' rather than an agent will assist
you. ...My friend... has had luck with California-based Rentvillas.com, so I begged
them to find me a desireable spot fast. Three days before departure we secured a
four-bedroom house near Sarlat for $1,400."
April 2003 Travel + Leisure
"Rentvillas.com is now one of the best European resources on the Internet."
December 2000 Travel + Leisure
The Wall Street Journal
"Rentvillas.com posts 'customer reviews' written by guests who actually have stayed
at the properties. ...Guests get a useful booklet with tips for renting villas in
Italy-- like bring slippers for the cold marble floors, and bug spray."
May 2004, The Wall Street Journal
The New York Times
"A Web search led us first to a service that wanted a third of the rental fee wired
to a bank in Luxembourg, with the rest to be paid in cash upon arrival, a scenario
about which we had more than a few doubts. We looked further, and found a California-based
rental agency, Rentvillas.com. We were assigned a 'travel consultant' named Amy
who sent cheerful and helpful e-mail messages. When we had narrowed our choice down
to two one-bedrooms by looking at photos on the Web site, she informed us that one
of them got a musty smell when it rained. So we went with Cesare (all the apartments
from all the services have a name, like pets), a few blocks west of the Piazza Navona.
It would cost $2,484 for nine nights. As it was just a month away, we had to pay
the whole amount - but it was by credit card."
New York Times, June 2004.
"There's No Place Like Rome"
Travel + Leisure Family
"I found countless Web sites devoted to rentals, but my inquiries were rarely answered.
Ultimately, I landed on the extremely efficient Rentvillas.com site, and secured
a four-bedroom mas - a Provencal stone house - with a pool and within walking distance
of the medieval hill town of Gordes."
T + L Family, Spring/Summer 2003,
"Chez You - France"
International Travel News
"We also loved using the website Rentvillas.com. ...I found it pleasantly addictive
to scan the listings... In the past we've rented villas in Italy, Portugal and Spain
from this superb company. Our rental in Venice was no exception to their excellent
International Travel News, September 2000
Conde Nast Traveler
"Suzanne Pidduck and her staff are very helpful and interested in their clients'
making a good choice. This is the second time we have used them with great success
and we appreciate their personal attention."
"Villa hunters may first fall for panoramic snaps in a glossy brochure, but this
online agent ...lets you put the practical before the pictorial. ...Narrow your
search using increasingly refined criteria, from region, to proximity to town center,
to backyard pool. Then click on those villas that make the cut for a glimpse of
your very own room with a view."
Conde Nast Traveler, October 2000; "50 Essential Travel Sites"
"[Rentvillas.com] is up-front and honest. Specializing in midrange properties, it
puts the descriptions on the Internet, with reviews including both positive and
negative comments from previous clients. That means you learn in advance about drawbacks,
from noisy roads to infestations of insects."
December 1988, "Tuscany, Villa by Villa"