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Villa Life: The European Utility Jolt
By Hideaways Staff

The biggest surprise for most first-time European villa vacationers is how delightfully different a stay in a private home can be. The second biggest surprise can be the size of the utility bills, if they are not included.

No matter how much we pay at home for electricity, heating, water, telephone, and television (and gas for the car!), it's a good bet that all will cost more in Europe. In some cases, it's simply that utilities are more expensive to produce; in other cases, it's because space heaters and other make-shift solutions in ancient but atmospheric (and often uninsulated) villas are costly to operate.

The allure of villa photos and descriptions—and the fantasy of living like the natives—can obscure the reality of heat, electricity and phone charges, no matter how prominently they're detailed or explained by your travel consultant.

Our advice: Be prepared!

Summer 1999

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