Can’t wait until the summer for a holiday? Bridge the gap with a refreshing power break.
Here’s the best at home and abroad:
St Michael’s Mount, Cornwall
Living in a castle on your own island might seem like a fairytale but for Mary and James St Aubyn it’s very much a reality. Perched on a granite outcrop, their majestic home has been passed down through generations since the 17th century but today the family is happy to share its magic with the public.
Linked to the West Cornish seaside town of Marazion, the Mount can be easily reached by a causeway at low tide. Visit in spring now the island has reopened after a winter break, and the sandy beaches of Marazion are still free from buckets and spades.
Explore the castle and surrounding village, or view the island from an altogether different perspective - by boat. Marazion Gig Club take guests out on traditional Cornish gigs (six-oared rowing boats).
Make your base the Godolphin Arms, a friendly pub hotel on the mainland with sweeping sea views. Admire the Mount at different times of day, watching as the light changes and water quickly swells around the banks, separating it from the rest of the world.
Monastero Santa Rosa, Italy
It took 12 years of planning, building and Italian bureaucracy to transform a crumbling 17th century monastery hanging from the cliffs of the Amalfi coast into one of the region’s most sought-after hotels.
A marble bathtub, used to grow plants in the spa garden, was flown in by helicopter, stone corridors were decorated with antique furnishings and recipes originally prepared by the resident nuns were resurrected in the property’s excellent restaurant - one of the finest on this star-studded coastline.
The hotel’s spa uses treatments exclusively created in partnership with Santa Maria Novella, a Florentine order of Dominican friars who made their first perfume for Catherine de Medici in 1533. But even sitting in the terraced olive and lemon-filled gardens, looking out to the sun-dappled sea, is a religious experience in itself.
Marti Hemithea, Turkey
Peaceful and secluded, with everything you could possibly need for a relaxing and rejuvenating break, it feels like time is standing still at this five-star boutique hotel overlooking a marina.
Set on the Turkish coast, where the Aegean meets the Mediterranean Gulf of Hisaronu, the property sits at the foot of tree-covered slopes.
Marti Hemithea pays homage to its Turkish heritage. Guest rooms incorporate styles adopted from ancient civilisations (mosaic flooring, a spacious hammam shower and stone-style ornaments), while dark wood, and a colour scheme of turquoise and sandy tones suggests earth, sea and sky.
Gently clinking sails, the constant chorus of cicadas and live music over dinner provide the soundtrack to a stay here.