Vacation rentals in Italy (villas, farms, estates, agriturismo, apartments)
Review 3382: Positano Villas, Villa Hellen
2bed/1.5bath apartment in Positano, Campania
March 1 - 6, 2008, 6 nights
Villa Hellen is located in the heart of Positano. It was very easy to get to. In Positano, most all of the buildings are right next to or on top of other buildings, so it was close to all the other buildings. But we never had any trouble with noise from any other buildings.
It is an easy walk to several different stores for groceries. There is a very small store up the steps and to the left, and a larger store up the stairs, and up the street on the right. You must walk up the steps and then up the street about 1/4 of a mile (or less) to buy tickets for and pick up the bus. There are cafes up and down the street and down at the beach level. Everything is within very easy walking distance. I would highly recommend not coming with a car as parking seems to be very difficult and expensive!
The villa was in excellent shape. The pictures you see on the web site are completely accurate. It was a very peaceful location. You can enter the villa in two ways. When you are coming down the steps, there is a door that leads into one of the two bedrooms. Both of the bedrooms are on this upper level. You go down a steep set of steps to the bathroom, and then another few steps to get down to the living area, kitchen, and patio. You can also enter on this lower level by following the steps down past the upper entrance, and taking another set of steps to the back entrance.
You can view the property directly: Villa Hellen.
The patio was gorgeous and private. You have your own private orange tree and barbecue. There are two beach type chairs on the patio to relax in and read, and a table on the upper patio and another table on the lower patio. Both are great for eating outside while taking in the stunning view of the ocean and Positano.
Everything was in great shape. The villa was spotless when we arrived. There were plenty of chairs for eating at the dining table, and a sofa and two comfy chairs in the living area.
The beds were typical European beds. A little firmer than I think we are used to in the US, but comfortable. There were adequate extra blankets as well. There were two bathrooms, one inside the villa, and one off the patio. That was plenty to accommodate the three or four people you have staying here. The bathrooms were in great shape. The shower had a door (which is not necessarily common in Europe), there was a toilet, bidet, and sink. There were plenty of towels and a closet in the bathroom for storing your stuff.
The kitchen was very functional. Fully stocked with pots and pans. The stove is gas and worked great. There is also a microwave, toaster and coffee maker. There was also a stove top coffee maker which I used while I was there, and an espresso maker (which I did not use because it looked very complicated). There was a standard size refrigerator. It was very easy to cook full meals, and we totally took advantage of it only eating one meal (or less) out a day.
Problems or Bonuses
All good surprises! We ended up having a laptop with Internet access in the villa, which we were very excited about. This allowed us to keep in touch with our families at home since we did not have a phone.
Agency and Representatives (and price)
The agency was wonderful. I had so many questions and kind of inundated Luisa (the person answering my emails) with them on a somewhat daily, weekly basis. She always responded promptly and was very helpful. They arranged a taxi transfer for us to the villa which was a very easy way to arrive in Positano. They had no trouble communicating with me in English.
The on site person who greeted us was great. He took us around and showed us everything we needed to know about the villa. He even stopped by a couple times during the week to check on us and make sure everything was working out okay.
The photos of the villa online are completely accurate. The published prices on the web are all accurate - there were no hidden costs. Heat and cleaning after you leave are included in the weekly price.
Do you recommend this vacation rental to others?
I highly recommend this villa and this company. If I was going back to Positano I would stay here again without hesitation. It is worth the money, and if you have enough people to rent two hotel rooms, you will probably actually save money by renting this villa. The company was helpful every step of the way. I was very, very nervous about this trip as I had not previously planned a trip out of the country and I was just amazed how everything fell into place. The taxi driver was waiting for us at the train station with a placard with my name on it. He showed up early for us for the return trip to Naples just to make sure to get us there on time. The on site person was friendly and helpful. Truly, everything about this rental was fabulous. Don't hesitate to trust this company.
Things to do in this area
The area has a lot of cute shops and highly rated restaurants. We only ate at one location in Positano, so I can't really recommend much in the way of restaurants. It is very easy to get to other locations pretty quickly from Positano. We took the bus to Ravello, and we were able to walk down to Amalfi and then take the bus back to Positano. Amalfi has a very old paper printing company that should not be missed - the tour was €3 and highly worth it. We also travelled to Pompeii by taking the bus to Sorrento and the Circumvesuviana to Pompeii. It was a very easy trip. When you first arrive in Positano, if you plan on taking the bus, go to the little shop at the top of the street and get a SITA bus schedule. It was invaluable to us in planning our day trips. There are great little shops everywhere. Grocery stores are much smaller than what we are used to in the US.
This review is the opinion of a Slow Travel member and not of slowtrav.com.
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