About Oliver's Travels

Where did it all start?

In 2003, my best mate Ravi and I spent a week at a crumbling chateau in the Dordogne with a group of our closest friends. It was one of those holidays you never forget. The chateau was stunning, the wine was flowing and the weather was pretty much perfect. Best of all, we had the whole place to ourselves.

As it turns out, that holiday was the start of something pretty special. Before we’d even got back to England, Ravi and I had come up with the basic idea for our first business, Simply Chateau: a website where people could find and book exclusive, luxury villas without having to shell out a fortune.

 

 

Where are we today?

We’ve grown a bit since then. We’ve now got a team of people who love travelling just as much as we do. Between us, we’ve hand-picked every one of the properties you’ll find on the site.

Our emphasis is still on quirky, lavish, one-of-a-kind places to stay, but we now offer villas, castles, stately homes, beach huts and cottages, as well as chateaux – not just in France, but all over the world.

You may have noticed we’ve changed our name too. Ravi took a bit of persuading, but in the end we agreed on Oliver’s Travels!

 

 

Why do ordinary?

So whether you want to treat the family, get together with friends or spend a romantic weekend somewhere special, why do ordinary... when you can have exceptional?

If you are looking for a bit of inspiration, why not take a look at our latest recommendations, where you’ll find a list of our own favourite places to stay? The Inspiration page is also a good place to start your search. And if you still haven't even decided on where to go, head to Oliver's Journal - our pretty awesome blog!


Happy travelling,

 



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Oliver's Explorers: The toughest critics out there! View all videos >



Oliver - Co-Founder

Favourite Property: Maison Sebastien 
Favourite Region: Aquitaine, France
Top Tip: Try 'UPS-ing' your luggage - It works out cheaper than charges the budget airlines levy and means you waltz through the airport sans luggage!

Ravi - Co-Founder

Favourite Property: Chateau Seiguier
Favourite Region: Dordogne, France
Top Tip: Splurge a bit! Holidays are so important and it's always fun to go slightly over budget occasionally.

Flora - Concierge

Favourite Property: Le Domaine Fleuri
Favourite Region: Barbados, Caribbean
Top Tip: Don't forget sea sickness pills for your day trip to Carricou in Grenada!

Renata - Concierge

Favourite Property: Villa Felathri
Favourite Region: Algarve, Portugal 
Top Tip: Practice walking before going on holidays to prepare your legs, feet and walking shoes if you're planning on long days of sightseeing!

Britta - Concierge

Favourite Property: Finca La Grenota
Favourite Region: Devon, UK
Top Tip: Try to learn a few useful words and phrases before you leave to help you along on your travels.

Sophie - Concierge

Favourite Property: Puggiestone House 
Favourite Region: Andalucia, Spain
Top Tip:
The best thing about holidays is the getting lost and discovering hidden treasures.

Fanny - Concierge

Favourite Property: Villa Sughera  
Favourite Region: Sardinia, Italy
Top Tip:
Pack a small bag with all the essentials you'll need when you arrive. It will save you rummaging around in your suitcase!

Zuzana - Concierge

Favourite Property: Gigaro Beach House
Favourite Region: Cornwall, UK
Top Tip: What's the best way to a sense of humour fail? Get lost. Keep it old school and take a paper map!

Katie - Concierge

Favourite Property: Chateau Le Brun
Favourite Region: IbizaSpain
Top Tip: Invest in a small (but decent!) portable speaker to soundtrack al fresco dining and chilled afternoons by the pool. 

Harriet - Concierge

Favourite Property: La Fee Blanche
Favourite Region: Vendee & Charente, France 
Top Tip: Don’t be afraid to get lost! It usually leads you to the best place.

Georgie - Concierge

Favourite Property: Holy Loch Manor
Favourite Region: Corfu, Greece
Top Tip: Always eat where the locals eat, it's the best way to experience the country's cuisine!

Stephanie - Weddings

Favourite Property: Chateau Philippe de Fay
Favourite Region: South of France, France
Top Tip: Make sure your hire car GPS has an English option - unless your French is good it can be tricky finding rural chateaux otherwise! 

John - Finance

Favourite Property: Villa Orpheus
Favourite Region: Rhodes, Greece
Top Tip: If it's hot, then early starts and afternoon siestas can help make the most of the day!

Claudia - Product

Favourite Property: Domaine La Sitelle
Favourite Region: Cote D'Azur, France
Top Tip: One for the ladies – a beautiful pashmina is always a must have item on holiday. So versatile and light.

Julia - Product

Favourite Property: Quercia di Manciano
Favourite Region: Loire Valley, France
Top Tip:
Save space in your luggage by rolling up your clothes. Remember - if you aren't sure about bringing an item, you probably don't need it!

Matt - Product

Favourite Property: Waterside House 
Favourite Region: St Lucia, Caribbean
Top Tip: FREE WATER FOR ALL! Pack an empty water bottle if you want to save on the expense, there are usually water fountains after security! Magic!

Kyra - Product

Favourite Property: Cameron North Lodge
Favourite Region: Cotswolds, UK
Top Tip: The best travel snack is a banana, they are nutritious, yummy and easy to pack - and will keep you going for hours!

Zoe - Product

Favourite Property: Hollywood House
Favourite Region: Scotland, Uk
Top Tip: Packing is everything. Will you wear everything you are taking? Probably not! Get rid of a third of the clothes packed, so you can bring more back!

Andrew - Product

Favourite Property: Linton Lodge
Favourite Region: Crete, Greece
Top Tip:
Always take sensible walking shoes! And enjoy a picnic made up of local delicacies in an idyllic setting of your choice.

Giulia - Product

Favourite Property: Sea View Villas
Favourite Region: Scotland
Top Tip: Always remember that lighting and angles are key to a good Instagram holiday snap!

Stevan - Product

Favourite Property: Villa Livia
Favourite Region: Sicily, Italy
Top Tip: For overseas purchases, always use credit cards with a 0% exchange rate & NO loading fees – it could save you £££s!

Jo - Product

Favourite Property: Rouge Cottage

Favourite Region: KefaloniaGreece

Top Tip: You can learn so much about an area by the food, visit a market and see the raw ingredients and try things that are new to you.

Nuala - Product

Favourite Property: Villa Es Costes
Favourite Region: Balearic Islands
Top Tip: Travelling between the islands is so easy with regular daily boats leaving between Mallorca – Menorca – Ibiza - Formentera.  Make the most of your holiday and visit the other islands for the day.

Tania - Product

Favourite Property: Maison Coeur
Favourite Region: Costa Blanca, Spain
Top Tip: Always carry a portable mobile charger with you, you might run out of battery when you need it the most!

Laetitia - Photography

Favourite Property: Le Cocon
Favourite Region: Puglia, Italy 
Top Tip: Don't forget the suncream if you don't want to end up mistaken as a boiled lobster!

Maria - Marketing

Favourite Property: Villa Shambhala
Favourite Region: Mallorca, Spain
Top Tip: When travelling with kids, make sure you download some shows for the times without internet when you need to keep them calm!

Natasja - Marketing

Favourite Property: Villa Thalassa
Favourite Region: Dalmatia, Croatia
Top Tip: Hire quad bikes when you’re on the Greek islands…Awesome way to explore and discover the less-packed beaches!

Margo - Marketing

Favourite Property: Chateau Alarie
Favourite Region: BurgundyFrance
Top Tip: If you are an anxious flier, settle your nerves by checking a turbulences forecast before you take off. 

Natalie - Marketing

Favourite Property: Villa El Cid
Favourite Region: Tuscany, Italy
Top Tip: Holidays are the perfect opportunity for a digital detox. Unplug, disconnect and enjoy!

Felix - Marketing

Favourite Property: Villa Carina
Favourite Region: Paphos, Cyprus
Top Tip: You may only see these places and meet these people once in a lifetime. Remember to take plenty of photos!