We loved our weekend getaway at Villa Valentino. From the moment that you drive up to the gate, you get a sense of the past grandeur and grace of the home and its occupants. Victor Feria greeted me, and he could not have been a better host. He did a superb job of speaking for the owner in welcoming us (and truly making us feel welcome). I felt right at home.
The location is probably the best feature. It is very easy to reach via I-95, and it is equally easy to travel from the home to the Brickell area of Miami, to downtown Miami, to Key Biscayne, to South Beach, and to other destinations in the area. Restaurants, parks, banks and supermarkets are all within an easy driving distance. There is a great walking/running path around Grove Isle just across the street. One is transported to a garden area of South Miami, but you are so close to all that the city offers.
But we did not wander far from home once we had settled in. We enjoyed and took a lot of pictures within the property - at the waterfall and pond next to the guest cottage, at the hot tub and pool (with its comfortable chaises and spouting fountains) and in the barbeque area - complete with an outside kitchen area (with complimentary bottles of water, which were appreciated on a hot day), large picnic tables and a powder room. There is even an outside shower for convenience, and we did use that.
Inside the cottage the kitchen was all that one needs and was stocked with the necessities (and again complimentary bottled water, butter, coffee, tea and numerous other pantry items). The cottage is not the Ritz Carlton, but is an historic guest cottage with many of its original features, including charming ceilings, floors, doors and layout. (And even in an historic residence, it never hurts to have a flat screen television or two for that important football game or movie.) We slept very well.
Our wonderful stay ended the way that it began - with a conversation with our host, this time Steve Turk, who was very accommodating and gracious. Thank you to all of the Villa team for a great long weekend. We'll be back soon.