This, our third visit to John’s corner of Portuguese paradise, was our best yet. We arrived to a generous welcome hamper and the warm greeting of an old friend, and settled in very quickly to soak in the tranquil beauty all around. 

It is sometimes a risk to go back when you have had a memorable holiday, but it was very satisfying to return to a place and find it to be even better than we remembered. This is largely down to John’s understated but impeccable hosting skills.

He is at hand when you need him, but never imposing. We have stayed in many well appointed villas over the years, but I would have no hesitation in saying that this is by some way the best. The villa is immaculate, the pool and views sublime, and the atmosphere idyllic.

I would struggle to see how it could conceivably be any better.

Simon & Sarah UK - May 2024      5stars

We spent a very enjoyable eight nights at John's villa outside Santa Catarina during the early part of Setember. The setting is absolutely serene with beautiful views over the countryside and the sea in the distance. It was lovely to relax around the pool and have the occasional swim. We also enjoyed a long walk over the countryside, which winds over gentle hills, past orchards and fig trees.

The villa itself was spotlessly clean and very well equipped. There was a good selection of food and drink basics waiting for us when we arrived, which was very welcome.

The location is a little way off the main road on a track. It was easy to drive into Tavira for restaurants and the supermarkets - Continente was our supermarket of choice. Restaurant Luis de Prego down the road in the village of Prego was particularly good as well, serving local specialities, excellent charcoal-grilled fish and good wine, all at very reasonable prices.

The location of the villa was well suited for exploring the eastern side of the Algarve. We particularly like Loule, Olhao and Fuseta. We also had a day trip to Ayamonte in Spain, crossing the Guadiana river by ferry from Villa Real de Santo Antonio. 

All in all we thought the villa was excellent, and we would highly recommend it.

Kevin and June



The best word to describe the villa is one of peace. The quietness and the beauty of the hills of the east Algarve are totally relaxing.

The villa had every item required including the all important corkscrew! For our arrival John had stocked the kitchen with the basic foods to start our holiday. The spacious bed was one of the most comfortable we've slept in, on our travels.

There can be no better way to start the day than with a swim and some exercise before breakfast, which we then had by the pool. In the evening we ate dinner here too whilst watching the sunset.

On the days we were not topping up our tans and relaxing at the pool we ventured out to the naturist beaches at Praia do Barril and Isla Deserta. The nearby towns of Tavira, Faro and Fuseta are also well worth visiting.  An enjoyable morning was spent wine tasting at Quinta da Tôr vineyard, which is a 40 minute drive away. We would recommend coffee at the cafe 'Madeiras Pao Quente' in the local village of Santa Catarina. The croissants and pastries are delicious. The cafe appears to be the hub of village life.

We look forward to returning to Casa Paciencia before too long.

Ewan and Christine, Edinburgh5stars

Louise & I spent the most relaxing two weeks we’ve probably ever had at the villa in July 2023.
The final off-road approach to it hinted of something special & we were not disappointed. The remote rural location, warm terraces & stunning views, afforded us total privacy in which to enjoy the pool & attractive gardens uninhibited by clothing & convention. 
We particularly loved the quiet naturist beach on Ilha Deserta, 35 minutes from the villa & a short, exhilarating RIB ride from the quayside at Faro’s old town, where we spent long days at peace with nature, as if on our own private island. 
Both Tavira & Faro offer plenty of opportunities for evening dinner & drinks. Preferring to explore Tavira’s back streets, we found several excellent restaurants offering fantastic food & wine. Artefact is not to be missed & the rooftop cocktail bar A Ver is a very special place.
Returning to the villa after dark, we eagerly shed our clothes, then heading to the still warm loungers, pool & fantastic hot tub, it was pure delight to gaze upwards at the starlit sky & actually physically feel the tranquility of the location.
Our sincere thanks go to John, an excellent & very considerate host; our accommodation, the grounds & pool were extremely well maintained, spotlessly clean & well equipped… & yes, we have booked for 2024.

5stars        Colin & Lou

We enjoyed a wonderful week staying at John's beautiful villa. It gave us exactly what we had hoped for, peace and serenity within beautiful surroundings. The villa itself was ideal for us, containing everything we needed. Not having to pack a hairdryer or beach towels, nor having to iron any clothes before packing was a bonus! John's beautiful garden and pool was a pleasure to wander around, having a number of hidden areas to sit and enjoy the view or lay reading enjoying the warm sun. Having read all the other reviews there is very little extra to be added, they all sing the praises of the Villa, of John, and how he hosts. Every word is true and we can't wait to be able to book a return visit! Thank you so much John. Martinne & Stephen, Cornwall, UK.

Martinne & Stephen



We planned two weeks in Portugal and really wanted to visit the naturist beaches we’d read about. When we found John’s guest house listed on a Portugal Naturist website, we couldn’t believe how beautiful the photos were. When we arrived, we were thrilled to find that the place is even more beautiful in person. The private guest space was spacious and comfortable, with a large bedroom, living room, and kitchen. We had exclusive use of the pool during the day, but it was even more fun chatting with John in the evenings. The setting and grounds are completely private, high on a hilltop, with beautiful views all around. It’s only about 15 minutes to the interesting town of Tavira, slightly longer to the naturist beach Praia do Barril. It’s really a wonderful environment to relax and enjoy the area. Thanks so much to John for everything (including rushing over to airport to bring us forgotten passports). Note that it’s about a 3 hour drive from Lisbon, so flying to Faro is a better option, if possible. We would love to come back another time!

Deb and Gary, Portland, Oregon, USA

5 star review

 Just back from a perfect couple of weeks in John’s idyllic villa. It is difficult to accurately convey the atmosphere of peace and tranquility that surrounds the fabulous property in this beautiful part of the world. It was a true oasis of calm and a great antidote to our busy lives back home. The standard of the apartment exceeded our already high expectations, likewise the pool area and gardens which are all put at the guests’ exclusive disposal. The pool itself is spotlessly clean and has nice wide loungers around and a shady pool house with more seating and a table. I particularly enjoyed the terrace a few steps down from the pool which allowed uninterrupted views across the countryside for my morning yoga session. Behind the poolhouse there is a swing seat under a shady carob tree that is the perfect place to sit and read. Most of all though we enjoyed the freedom of a naturist lifestyle in complete privacy with John joining us, at our invitation, for an evening swim, beer and chat that we very much appreciated. He otherwise stayed in the background but was always on hand if we needed anything - in short, the perfect host and a true gentleman. We could not recommend this place too highly, it is truly spectacular. August 2022

Simon and Sarah, UK

5 star review

 If you're looking for a small slice of paradise then this is it. The holiday we'd planned was cancelled at the last minute and, with only a day to organise an alternative, we found John's villa and it's like it was meant to be. The villa itself has everything you could wish for and the photos really don't do it justice. As for the pool, grounds and hot tub - they are sensational. The whole place is imbued with a wonderful energy and the setting is a true haven of peace and tranquility. We wanted to relax, recharge and enjoy just 'being' together - this was the perfect place to do just that. We loved exploring Tavira - it's a gorgeous little town with some great restaurants - and Praia do Barril is a an incredible beach that's well worth a visit. John was the perfect host - going above and beyond what was required when our flight was delayed. He was always there when we needed anything yet perfectly discreet and never intrusive. Honestly, we couldn't have wished for anything different and we're already planning our next trip. July 2022

Tommy & Polly UK

5 star review

 It was a delight to stay in your holiday annex, the villa is in a superb location with fantastic views and so peaceful and quiet, we were sorry to leave. The pool is wonderful for cooling off in the hot afternoons There are some great places to visit and the choice of restaurants within a 30 minutes’ drive are great. The towns of Olhao, Tavira and Fuseta on the coast are lively, during the day and in the evening, cultural events abound at this time of the year. The mountains inland hold some delightful homely restaurants with great local cooking and reasonable priced with amazing views Loule and Silves are great inland towns with the great Arab/Moroccan restaurant in Silves called moSaiko Hopefully we will be able to make a return visit soon as it’s a great place to relax and take in the tranquillity of the surroundings June 2022 22

 Iain & Rosemary UK

5 star review

Just returned from our second holiday. An excellent short break and we would reiterate our comments from last year. Plenty of sunshine and much relaxation. Would highly recommend and will no doubt return.

 Mike & Sue UK

5 star review

“We have just returned from Portugal having had a perfect holiday at John & Denise’s villa.

The apartment was spotless and extremely well-equipped- like a home from home. The washing machine was much appreciated and the bed very comfortable.

The days were hot and sunny and we enjoyed the pool, sitting on the terraces looking at the amazing views and watching the sunsets. The location is very peaceful and ideal for a relaxing holiday. It would have been tempting to spend our days enjoying the pool and garden but we did venture out most days. We particularly liked Tavira and the naturist beach Praia do Barril is lovely with miles of soft white sand.

Many thanks to John & Denise who are the ideal hosts, giving us complete privacy but always there when needed. We had some lovely chats with them both. We hope to return!!”

September 2021

Mike & Sue UK

5 star review

We have just returned from our second stay at Casa Paciencia, our first visit was September 2021, we enjoyed our stay so much we had to return. There is something very special about the situation of this holiday apartment, up in the hills overlooking countryside and a view to the coast. Sitting in the conservatory with the doors open for a soft breeze and looking over the sparkling lights on the hillside is magical. The accommodation is as described and very comfortable, the bed is super comfy. The pool and gardens including the cool pool house are wonderful. Apart from shopping for food we don’t really leave during the first week of the holiday just chilling and swimming by the pool However there is plenty to see and do locally we loved Tavira including Ilha Tavira and Praia do Barril, also Loulé and Sao Bras. Spoilt for choice of local restaurants, good food and very reasonable priced. As other reviewers have said John is the perfect host, staying in the background but happy to give advice and suggestions if asked. We love Portugal and particularly the wonderful Casa Paciencia

Phil and Cherie UK

5 star review

What a great discovery! What a pleasant stay rich in sensations!

A little corner of paradise perched on the peaks, surrounded by nature with a magnificent view!

A comfortable, clean and very well equipped apartment. There is a terrace and garden where it is good to rest, walk, and enjoy a pleasant drink or meal. With a swimming pool and a jacuzzi to relax in.

The natural surroundings with scents and colours we really appreciated. A calm and relaxing place where you feel so good that it is difficult to leave it to find pleasure in the evenings or for excursions.

But it is also close to Tavira with its shops, restaurants, boats, walks and beaches….including the naturist beach of Praia do Barill …and other charming places to discover.

The owners are as welcoming and available as they are discreet. Thank you to Denise and John for their welcome and all their little attentions, such as the small lunch package provided for our arrival, which showed concern for us.

We will definitely be back!

July 2021

 Christine and Benoît, Belguim

5 star review

Well we must admit we struck lucky. Having booked last minute when Portugal came off the quarantine list , we actually managed to get a week in before it went back on again! Then we were lucky with the weather which provided a week of unbroken sunshine combined with light winds that stopped it from being too hot. And last but certainly not least we were extremely lucky to have found (with our customary minimal research) the carefully crafted piece of paradise that John and Denise have created in the Algarve countryside.

Set on a hillside with panoramic views and a private swimming pool this is high end accommodation which would be the envy of many a five star hotel, but with self catering facilities that means you can have exactly what you want when you want it. 

And when you don’t want to cook there is an excellent  local restaurant 10 minutes drive away (Luis de Prego - which produced some truly excellent octopus) and a whole host more in Tavira , which is 10 minutes further on.

If you want sea and sand there’s also a naturist beach about 20 minutes drive followed by either a walk or a shuttle train ride (open carriages and walking pace speed – ideal for studying the local fauna and flora). Very easy access and plenty of bars and restaurants on the beach with excellent seafood. 

And when you are chilling out back at the house, John and Denise are the ideal hosts – they remain firmly in the background but instantly available if you need anything. 

A wonderful week in a summer which let’s face it has had more than its’ share of ups and downs…

September 2020

  Chris and Yvonne  UK

5 star review

We have just returned from a relaxing week in these most peaceful surroundings, with their stunning views over the Algarve countryside towards the sea. The villa was well-equipped, comfortable and immaculately clean. Although the pool and hot tub were the central attractions, we loved exploring the various sunbathing options around the garden. We enjoyed memorable sunset barbecues and swims under the vast starlit skies.

It was hard to tear ourselves away from this setting but the beaches at Barril and Santa Luzia were well worth the trip. Tavira has enough history and character about it to make an interesting excursion not to mention a range of eating places.

A big thank you to John and Denise who were excellent hosts - unobtrusive so as not to impinge upon their guests, yet always available with helpful advice and suggestions if asked.

September 2019

 Malcolm & Margaret UK

5 star review

Just a thank you for the privilege of staying in your beautiful apartment, full of character, well appointed, everything you need and more, and a most comfortable king-sized bed.

Really quiet and totally relaxing, the scenery is beautiful, in the middle of nowhere, Paul went for a walk each morning and took a different route each time, and on only one occasion saw another person, fantastic. If you cannot relax here then you most certainly have a problem!

The pool is delightful, the hot tub the icing on the cake and the garden just goes on and on with many special features. Thank you also for the welcome pack which is a nice touch.

Santa Catarina is 5 minutes away with quaint little shops that remind you of the 60s in England, you can get everything you need, the bread shop cum cafe has a magnificent array of cakes and was a hive of activity. Further afield you can go to Tavira in 15 minutes and to the outstanding Praia do Barril beach is another 10 minutes, it is a must, almost white sand, stunning.

To cap it all we used the gas barbecue almost every day because we did not want to leave the tranquil environment we were in, need we say more.

We liked it so much (if you will have us again) to book for the same time next year

September 2019

  Marie & Paul UK & Crete

5 star review

We had a lovely stay with John & Denise.

The house is great and the view amazing. A nice pool and lots of privacy.The kitchen is well equiped and we slept very well because of the big bed and the quiet environment. John and Denise are very helpful.
Lots of lovely places in the neighbourhood. Eat Cataplana in restaurant Zeca et Bica in Tavira.


We will go again!

August 2019

 Luc & Jeannette, Holland 

5 star review