Villa Ricci’s grand terrace is made for sunbathing, with a row of loungers ready and waiting at the poolside. There are covered areas with seating, as well as a play area and large lawn just beyond the pool. A cosy lounge with dining areas and a large barbecue offers the ideal space for getting together over food and drinks. You also have an outdoor shower.
All the rooms on the lower floor enjoy direct access to the terrace. An open-plan living room and dining area with cool, tiled floor offers a flatscreen TV with DVD, and a decorative fireplace. There is seating for eight at the dining table, while the sleek kitchen comes equipped with microwave, dishwasher, coffee machine and ceramic hob, among other appliances.
A large games room offers table tennis and a pool table, as well as exercise equipment and a comfortable seating area. There are four bedrooms, of which three can be found on the lower floor. These rooms are a double and two twins, each with a TV and air-conditioning. The double bedroom on the upper floor also has access to a large, furnished balcony area, and a bathroom with corner bath – one of four bathrooms in the property.
Villa Ricci is situated in a residential area of Quelfes called Cerro Azul. There are amenities such as shops and supermarkets within around 6km. Just a little further south is the beautiful Ria Formosa nature reserve and the large coastal town of Olhão. Once a small fishing village, Olhão is now the largest fishing port on the Algarve, and visiting its bustling fish market and pretty waterfront, lined with pavement cafés, is a must.
The town is also known, and loved, for its two island beaches, Ilha da Culatra and Ilha da Armona, which are accessible by a ferry which departs regularly. Boat trips around the lagoons and marshes of the Ria Formosa are another popular activity, with plenty of wildlife to see.
Olhão is conveniently close to the city of Faro, and just a 15-minute drive from its airport. This architecturally rich city is well worth a visit, as is the traditional market town of Loulé. Notable for the Moorish influences found around town, it’s only a 25-minute drive away
Indeed, the waterfront fish market is an attraction in itself. There’s a lively atmosphere, and you can get all sorts of other local produce there too, with a fruit and vegetable market also found in the distinctive red-brick market buildings. Outside, café terraces provide a relaxing contrast to the activity inside.
Attractive gardens line the waterfront, in the form of the Jardim Patrao Joaquim Lopes and Jardim Pescador. Every August, these gardens come alive with the sound of live music from well-known local names, during the annual Festival do Marisco. Near here, you can also take a ferry ride to Olhão’s beaches – Culatra and Armona.
The Ilha da Culatra and Ilha da Armona form part of the beautiful Ria Formosa region. At around a 15-minute ferry ride from Olhão, Armona is the closest. Once you disembark, it’s a pleasant walk down to the beach, where sun loungers can be found.
Further away but larger, Culatra is about 35 minutes away. At the western end of the island, there is a good beach at Farol, as well as a lighthouse. You can also visit an uninhabited island, Ilha Deserta. It’s beautiful but don’t expect too many facilities – there is just one restaurant there.
Olhão is known as the capital of the Ria Formosa, a large area of lagoons and marshes that hosts marine and birdlife. The area has Natural Park status and is a popular destination to explore by boat. You should certainly consider a trip if you would like to spot flamingos and the many migrating birds on their way from Europe to Africa. If you visit the Quinta da Marim, an educational centre which acts as the Ria Formosa HQ, you can also learn about the Portuguese Water Dog – a native breed which used to help Olhão’s fishermen retrieve fish.
While it’s the beaches which draw most visitors to the area, the Old Town of Olhão is well worth a look too. You will find North African influences to the architecture due to the town’s historic trading links with the continent. Highlights include the 17th-century church, Igreja de Nossa Senhora do Rosário, and, just across the square, a small city museum. North of the centre, the town’s train station provides a means of visiting nearby Faro, which connects to most of the notable destinations around the region.
At Excellence Luxury Villas we pride ourselves on going that little bit further for our guests. From private chefs to babysitters we can help you arrange those little extras that make it a truly memorable holiday. Simply fill in the
concierge request form or contact Excellence Luxury Villas Concierge Team who will be happy to help. We can typically help you arrange any of the following:
- Maid service/extra cleaning
- Private chef/cook/catering
- Welcome hamper/pre-stocked fridge
- Local day-trips or tours
- Airport pick-up/drop-off
- Babysitting/childcare services
Please note that all extras are subject to availability and must be requested in advance of the holiday (prices on request). Due to some rural/remote locations, not all services will be available at all properties. However, we will always do our best to fulfil your requests!