The decadence on offer in this Rennaissance beauty would have its former residents shaking in their habits, but its days as a monastery are long gone. Sprawling in the Florentine hills, Villa San Michele is surrounded by lawns and geranium-filled terraces the topmost of which has apool with stonking views over the city. Rooms are very elegant, very Italian-all creams and golds, antiquesoriginal frescoes, windows sporting romantically creaky wooden shutters. So let's just recap. High terraces? Check. Irreplaceable furniture? Double check. Not one for the sprogs, then? Well, actually it is. There is a brilliant kids'club, Smile, in the old chappel, where bambini learn to make pizza with the utterly charming Attilio-or they can romp around the hotel's secret gardens, or go on treasure hunts in the city's churches. Even the monks would have approved. (probably).


Best be honest: from the outside, Bedruthan Steps is a bit Teletubbies-acid-green lawns, circular pools, Crayola-coloured sunloungers. Which is just one reason why your kids will love it. But so will you, and here's why:they've thought of everything. Seriously, everything:two kid's clubs, serfing lessons, outdoor and indoor pools, a pirate ship, a trampoline, every child friendly utensil-known to man -and get ready to punch the air-an indoor soft -play area for rainy days.  With armchairs to sink into the newspapers to actually read! So they' ll be knackered, which is perfect as you can then tuck them up in your retro-chic room and disappear to the terrace bar for coctails and knockout views over Mawgan Porth Beach. And if the little blighters do wake up, a tiny beer -mate- shaped baby listening device will buzz to let you know. 


There's something coolly beautiful about the Alpson drizzly summer days, as mists rise and sweep through the valleys. The Lodge chills in the hills of Verbier, overlooking glorious jutting peaks. And, like eveything Branson does it is cheerfully in your face a big beefy chalet on steroids, with seven timber lined rooms and two mammoth suites. Sheltering from the rain is actually fun here-wait it out with a Yon-Ka facial, or hustle your fellow guests at the pool table-and meals taken en masse, are knocked up by chef Darren Burke using ingredients so fresh they could somersault off your plate. But it is on sunny days that the Alps burst into blooming life and the Lodge becomes the perfect pitstop from which to paraglide through the peaks, mountain bike over dirt track trails or hike through fields of flowers, belting "The Hiiiills are alive'at the top of your lungs.


Oh, the steps! The little cobbled steps that wind up and down this higgledy cliffside, leading to and from the Flintstoney rooms that make up Mystique. Take them slowly-it's easy to trip as your eyes are drawn outwards, over the vast bay, because never have you seen such views of the Aegean.( Helen of Troy used it as her swimming pool, of course.) Rooms have terraces and stone hot tubs from which to survey the sea, all while sipping something the waiters cart your way. Or lie in bed and gaze at the horizon from your small, bright suite-a symphony in cream, which is radical for the picturesque town of Oia, where everything is bright white with the old blue accent. Stagger up the steps to the main strip and weave around to the point to watch the sunset. Or stay put, eating an improbably good dinner at the restaurant or sipping delicious Santorini white wine at the bar with crazy views, and write mini Odyssey.