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Review: Self catering with Homelidays in Laigueglia in Italy

sea view
Laigueglia (c) srsck

Liguria is one of my favorite regions in Italy, Laigueglia being my favorite small town in Liguria. We’ve been there quite often in the summer months and it’s always packed with Italian tourists. There are many hotels in Laigueglia but when travelling with a family for longer then two or three days, staying in a hotel is not always the most relaxed option. I would rather select self catering in a holiday apartment.

Finding self catering accommodation in Liguria

When searching for self catering accommodation in Europe I always start by looking on HomeAway, followed by Homelidays, followed by…the others. As you probably know by now, I’m a lousy planner. As a last minute person I’m in need of phone numbers which you are able to see on Homelidays when you have an account, while first contact with the owners through HomeAway is often online (most of the owners don’t add their phone numbers). You then just have to hope for swift response. Unfortunatly sometimes you don’t even get any answer at all. Anyway I’ve had a few really nice apartments through HomeAway and Homelidays until now and a few really lousy ones as well.

This time I was looking for an apartment in Liguria, within the hour (!), for my family and I (so for 5 people).  Laigueglia is a very cute little town but it’s kind of deserted in winter (and extremely full in high season). It was february and according to the Italian supermarket guy it was the coldest february in the last thirty years. The day we arrived it was was 1 °C and about – 5 °C at night so we were looking for accommodation with heating. What we did not realize at the time is that most apartments had not been rented out since septembre and were now colder then stone. By the time the walls of the house would heat up a bit our bones would already have transformed into ice cubes.

Winter in Italy
Cold winter in Laigueglia (c) srsck

Now enough complaints about the weather and on to the accommodation. After mailing a few houses through HomeAway and getting no replies except for one negative one, I went on calling some Homelidays owners. The first lady hung up on me (?!). The second, a guy told me to send an email and hung up on me :). No answer at the third number. I was starting to give up when I got the daughter of the owner of number four on the phone. She sounded very friendly and spoke English. She gave me the name and number of the person that had the keys and so we arrived in Laigueglia just twenty minutes after I had spoke to her, right before lunchtime.

Perfect self catering apartments in Laigueglia

The guy that has the keys works at a real estate agency in Laigueglia. His name is Andrea and he’s very nice and friendly. Eventhough he speaks very little English, he tries to help as well as he can. There could not have been a worst time for him to have to receive guests but he tried not to show it 🙂

The apartments, with old paintings on the ceilings, are located on the second floor (no elevator) of a beautiful old classic house from 1650. They are simply gorgeous, a real dream house. I wish I would live there all year round. The house is located right in the center of the old town, about 20 seconds walk from the beach and close to all restaurants.

It use to be one large apartment, which the owners have divided into two smaller ones. You could rent both apartments, they are merely divided by a door in the middle. The nicest thing of self catering apartment number one, Homelidays nr. 344383, is its large terrace of about 40m2 with lateral sea view. The terrace is perfect for summer evenings to have dinner on the big wooden table or for some private sunbathing. The apartment itself is about 80m2. There are two bedrooms, one with a double bed and one with three single beds. There is a simple bathroom with a shower and a separate toilet. The sitting area with the television is small, with a small couch, a small dining area and a kitchenette in a cupboard. Ok there it is, I hated the kitchen in the cupboard.

apt. 1 ceiling, hallway, bathroom (c) srsck. Apt. 1 green kitchen-cupboard (c) Homelidays

Seriously who wants to cook out of cupboard in a Palazzo? It’s fine to make a sandwich or maybe bake an egg but forget real cooking in this cupboard. I wish they would find a better solution for the kitchenette as this is such a pity. Had loads of good pizza’s from restaurant Pacan, a bit further down the street, during the ten days we stayed there. The decoration in the apartment is nice with antiques and stylish paintings and images on the walls and then there is this green cupboard. I did not understand who could have thought the cupboard would be a good idea and by god why green?

As for the amenities in the apartment, everything’s simple and functional, no luxury stuff. In short: no internet (solution: get an internet key at the store “Carosello” in Alassio and while you are there have a walk through Alassio, it’s a nice town.), there is a small fridge (no microwave or dishwasher), there is a washing machine (no dryer) in the bathroom. Everything functions just fine.

There is no parking which in the winter was no problem at all as there were enough spots on the street but knowing Laigueglia in July and August I gather that would be the biggest problem of this apartment as a car owner.

Staircase, ceiling apartment 2, view from the bedroom (c) srsck

Ok, now self catering apartment number two, Homelidays nr. 353032 does not have a terrace but the frontal view of the sea from one of the two bedrooms is incredibly pretty. When the wind blows though the window opens up. The sitting room is much bigger then in the other apartment, as is the dining area (and the dining table) but they did it again: the green kitchen-cupboard!!! This cupboard has a dishwasher. There was an oven in this cupboard but it did not seem to work. Then again, I’m not sure as we did not persevere in our oven try out. The fridge is a full size one. The bathroom is smaller then in the other apartment. Like in the other apartment there is a shower and a washing machine in the bathroom. There is no separate toilet. There are two bedrooms (one with two single beds, one with a double bed) but you do have to walk through one bedroom to get into the other. I would say this apartment is nicer then the other but the terrace of the other is great.

Some extra practical info: There are no sheets or towels and there is no possibility to rent them either so bring your own! You can park in front of the house to unload but the street is closed for cars after 16h00 so get there earlier.

Laigueglia
View from apartment 2 (c) srsck

All together I would recommend because of the beautiful old building, the nice people, the location, the view and the terrace but please dear owners, put a decent kitchenette in there. These apartments deserve better then the green cupboard!!

Ciao!

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