When Jean-Jacques bought this lovely old place, in among the carobs and the olives, his architect said, “change nothing.” You may be forgiven for thinking he has taken this advice too literally but, no matter, those in search of an authentic experience will be fine here. The 100-year-old farmhouse – built by an émigré who made his fortune in Brazil – lies a cobblestone’s throw away from its outbuildings, one a fine white stable that once housed sheep and mules. It’s not immaculate and definitely not for the helicopter brigade – your host’s relaxed personality is reflected in the informality. There are outdoor sitting areas for summer, wood-burners for winter and palm trees and peace all year round. As for the pool, it’s a half moon-shaped beauty set into the old threshing floor. Have a splash, gaze on the sea… the beaches are a ten-minute drive (or mini-train ride). For relaxed families, fuss-free couples or a great big party of easy-going friends.