Villa Emeralda on Ciovo in the town of Okrug Gornji was a delight. Our hosts, Masa and Toni, were helpful and kind beyond imagination, even arranging transportation for us and offering a ride to the hospital when one of us needed care.
Behind a large blue gate, the house stands amongst stone paths and gardens and overlooks the sea from two balconies. The living space was excellent for 4 friends, but could accommodate 6 easily. A master bedroom on the top floor has a balcony with chaise lounges, a single bedroom and a bathroom with a washer. On the main floor is the colorful blue-tiled kitchen and a large seating area, and another balcony with a large round table. The ground floor has a peaceful double bedroom and another bedroom with twin beds, along with a bathroom. The large bedroom leads out to a small covered patio with table and chairs and overlooks the beautiful garden. We ate fresh figs from the trees and saw orange and lime and pomegranate and olive trees everywhere. Wi-Fi is available and each room has a television, though we were more interested in gathering at the big table for conversation and dining. The premises are clean and peaceful.
The house sits up a small quiet road three minutes walk from the beach where there are many cafes and bars. The water was lovely, clear, crisp, cool and the weather perfect. There are several restaurants in Okrug Gornji and there is a 15-minute ferry every half hour to Trojir, a UNESCO city, which is large and buzzing with energy and is a true treasure of Croatia with its medieval architecture and cobblestone streets. The food was excellent in Trojir. A restaurant not to be missed is TRS. There is also a large open market where one may find fresh fish, vegetables, fruits, meats, cheeses, clothing, lace goods and products made in the region. Another highlight was the restaurant Konobo Dubo Django (also know as Rainbow Tavern), a 15 minute drive or 45 minute walk from the house up into the hills. The swimming is fantastic in the picturesque bay overlooking the islet Fumia; lounges are available in both sun and shade. Lunch following the swim consisted of grilled prawns, local sausages, salads and French fries, fish and steak. The is an authentic Dalmatian tavern, with a hint of French influence. There is no wine list, but the wines are superior, and guests are offered a cordial following the meal - cherry for ladies.
I highly recommend Emeralda with one caveat - the interior staircase from ground floor to top floor is spiral and could be a challenge to very young children, the elderly, or the disabled.
Thank you so very much, Masa and Toni, for welcoming us to your home!
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