Idle through an Italian breakfast in the large garden, take a 5-minute walk to the beach, get married or hold an event – who would not love to stay here? Mary Ellen is a warm gracious hostess, on hand for your questions and full of ideas for places to see; she is also a yoga teacher and has a room for courses. The villa was built in the 1970s, with jolly striped awnings and a front balustrade terrace, and steps spilling down to a dappled garden where palms and orange trees grow, source of your freshly squeezed juices, as well as plum, cherry, fig, lemon and pomegranate trees. Inside you are spoiled by space: a comfortable central living room stuffed with sofas around an inviting fireplace, a cosy side sitting area with an upright piano. Bedrooms are large, traditional and comfortable and named after their colours: Sapphire, Emerald, Oriental, Diamond. Three are en suite, three have big balconies, and each bathroom comes with perfect mosaics. Find Roman ruins at Ostia Antica, castles by the hatful and Rome only 15 minutes by train. Borrow the bikes and head off to the beach, or request a meal prepared for you at the villa.