I have rented many holiday homes over the years. None could match the stunning property that I stayed in last year. It was so wonderful that I would have offered to buy it had I thought for one moment that the owners would have been willing to sell. They were not!
I was visiting the beautiful Croatian island of Hvar. Before making the trip I had looked at pretty much all of the available properties online. At first it was hard to decide whether to pick something close to the water or a house further inland. Staying near the beach was more costly but convenient whereas a property inland would be cheaper and quieter.
In the end my mind was made up for me when I saw a listing featuring the most amazing renovated stone house with what looked like incredible views. It was about as far inland as you could get but having seen it I had stopped caring about ready access to the sea.
A House Beyond all Expectations
You can never fully judge a property until you actually get there. I was hoping that this one would live up to my expectations. I was sure that I would love it but when I eventually arrived, almost a year after making the booking, I was literally stopped in my tracks.
The location was wonderful, the views out of this world and the house to die for. The owners asked if I was happy with the house but I could barely speak!
Once I had settled in I was in a better position to take everything in. The property had been sympathetically renovated to showcase the beauty of the historic building whilst providing the modern conveniences that you need. The gorgeous original stone floors had been preserved as had a large brick oven. The roof was new as were the windows and doors. The weather was hot and I marvelled at how the thickness of the walls and the small windows ensured that the house remained cool inside.
Hvar in Winter – The Benefit of Double Glazed Windows
I did wonder what it would be like to stay there in winter. The island can be buffeted by stormy weather and a vicious seasonal wind called the Bora. There was no double glazing and so I imagined that the house could be cold and draughty in the winter months. I think that if I had done the renovation I might have opted for double glazed flush casement windows. These days you can find modern units in man-made materials that are suitable for period properties. These would have been a more practical choice and easier to maintain.
But that is a small criticism of what was an incredible house. Anyway I was there in the summer and so the windows were hardly an issue.
I was truly inspired by the stone house on Hvar. It was situated on the edge of the abandoned village of Humac and was the only property that had been completely renovated. Looking at the ruins of the other houses it was hard to imagine that my wonderful holiday home had once looked so sad. Perhaps one day I will have the chance to create something as special as that house.