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Extraordinary places to stay for Spring

Between winter off-season and peak summer prices, now is the choicest time to find unique stays around Europe and the eastern Mediterranean
Terraced gardens at Monaci delle Terre Nere in Sicily
The 14-room Hacienda de San Rafael is a classic slice of rural southern Spain.

bring me sunshine

Sometimes summer is too long to wait to get your fix of vitamin D. Blessed with 300 days of good weather a year, Malta promises golden rays even in early spring and Valletta Vintage (3) offers stylish boltholes around Europe’s sunniest capital. The architect-curated Gallery studios in an 18thcentury townhouse come furnished with 1950s and ’60s pieces, and balconies overlooking the glinting harbour (from £130, two-night minimum; vallettavintage.com). Named after the Greek word for hidden away, Apokryfo (5) is another architect-owned property where light streams through the tall windows. At this hotel in Cyprus’ foothills, guests float between the azure pool and lime-washed interiors as calming scents from the rosemary bushes waft over them (from £140; apokryfo.com). Olive groves are the olfactory backdrop to Hacienda de San Rafael (6), a hideaway halfway between Seville and Jerez where three lawn-fringed pools are flanked by shaded daybeds that call out to be lazed on (from £230; haciendadesanrafael.com). For a more urban getaway, Palau Sa Font (7) is tucked in the heart of Palma, Mallorca’s capital, with galleries, boutiques, restaurants and the beach all within walking distance. Plant-filled atriums, faded pink walls and wrought ironwork are some of the charming details at this one-time episcopal palace (from £130; palausafont.com). In equally sunny Tenerife, Hotel San Roque (1) is located in one of the island’s quieter villages. After exploring the nearby natural volcanic seabaths, residents can return to a candlelit dinner by the courtyard pool (from £170; hotelsanroque.com). In another volcanic setting, on the slopes of Mount Etna, Monaci delle Terre Nere (8) is a colonnaded Sicilian mansion with views out to the Ionian Sea and extensive kitchen gardens that thrive on the fertile soils (from £150; monacidelleterrenere.it).

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