The Sunvil Family
Originally, we sold villas and apartments in Cyprus – but, in 1973, we decided to organise self-catering holidays, giving property owners an income as well as their own holiday home. Well ahead of the current building boom, Sunvil created the self-catering villa market in Cyprus.
In July 1974, Turkey invaded Cyprus and we lost everything in the north of the island. We had to diversify, and Sunvil’s first Greek brochure was published in 1975. We also launched our travel agency. Business recommenced in Cyprus – only to the south of the island – late in 1975.
A brochure to Italy followed in 1979 and to Portugal in 1984; both destinations offer a lot in terms of scenery, culture and wonderful food and wine. The Atlantic archipelago of the Azores was added in 1990; Sunvil is the leading UK holiday company to these beautiful islands.
Greek Islands Club (now GIC The Villa Collection) became part of the family in 1998, making Sunvil the leading specialist operator to Greece and her islands – just ask our experts if you’d like to get off the beaten track, to see some wonderful sights and to stay in some amazing places.
Long-haul holidays came in 1992 with Namibia and, in 1995, with Costa Rica, the central American enclave with amazing plants, bird life and butterflies. Sunvil’s Latin American portfolio now includes all the major central/south American countries and sister company Expert Africa features most of southern Africa and many of the Indian Ocean islands.
Unusual destinations include Armenia (from 1997), and Romania (2007). Both suit the open-minded and more adventurous traveller.
Sweden and Norway followed (2008) – and also (2009) the Faroe Islands, part of Denmark. The TV series Wallander will spur travellers to follow in Kenneth Branagh’s footsteps and explore southern Sweden; we have fly/drive tours ready and waiting...
Sunvil has pioneered many specialist destinations in its 43-year history. The original directors still play an active part in the day-to-day running of the company and we are all proud that repeat and recommended holidaymakers make up 70% of our customers – due testament to our expertise and dedication to quality
GIC The Villa Collection
offer a range of individual island properties in the Ionian and Aegean seas for those who are looking for a more private escape from the crowds.
A unique vessel for your River Thames Charter Cruise
Genevieve is a 40 foot beaver stern saloon launch, built by Taylor and Bates of Chertsey in 1914. Her hull planking is African mahogany and all topside and interior fittings are in teak. Back then, her selling price was £1,150! In 1998, she was found rotting away on a canal in Lancashire and Peter Freebody, owner of one of the foremost UK boatyards for renovating classic boats, was immediately taken in by her shape and decided she must be saved for future generations to enjoy.
The extensive, painstaking renovation requested by Sunvil finished in May 2010. The launch is unique and very rare and she is Sunvil’s flagship.
Planet Holidays is a luxury tour operator featuring hand-picked accommodation – from holiday resorts in elegant settings, with facilities such as award-winning spas and pristine golf courses, to adults only or all-inclusive - as well as smaller privately owned boutique hotels and stunning villas. Singles, couples and families are all well catered for, you can also book ‘flight only’ or ‘accommodation only'.
We specialise in bespoke weddings and honeymoons to Greece, Cyprus, Portugal, Croatia, Malta, Gozo, Italy & Lapland. Our comprehensive programme offers an almost limitless selection of idyllic wedding venues.