Europe’s secret beach hotels

Looking to escape the crowds? You’ll have no problem securing a sun lounger at these off-the-radar beach hotels, says Ruth Jackson.

Six Keys, Thessaly, Greece

At the bottom of the garden is the hotel's private Kalifteri beach, "a long sand-and-shingle stretch with sun loungers and umbrellas that dips into shallow, clear waters, ideal for those children and adults who aren't strong swimmers". Active sorts are well-catered for the hotel also offers horse riding, hiking and mountain biking.

Suites from €150 (Sixkeys.gr; 00 30 242 303 3720).

Prima Donna, Kalkan, Turkey

The Hotel Prima Donna is a "hip hideaway with boho Turkish dcor, a poolside honesty bar and a complimentary shuttle to Patara beach".

Doubles from £250 (Hotelprimadonna.com; 00 90 532 543 6181).

Don Ferrante, Monopoli, Italy

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Don Ferrante, now a ten-bedroom townhouse, started life as a fortress "carved into the ancient defensive walls that surround the town". Behind the front door lies a "maze of narrow stone steps and corridors all leading to the same Adriatic panorama".

The sea is always visible and the bedrooms are "simple, sun-filled and very comfy". The tiny pool is a minor drawback given that "some of the best beaches in Italy are just minutes away".

Doubles from €145(Donferrante.it; 00 39 0 8074 2521).

Chateau de Valmer, St Tropez Peninsula, France

Chteau de Valmer is a "peerless" hotel with its own private stretch of the beach, as well as "its own vineyard, a new pastis bar and two luxurious treehouses".

Doubles from €230 (Chateauvalmer.com; 00 33 4 9455 1515).

Can Simoneta, Mallorca, Spain

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A winding staircase takes you down to the water. "Hot tubs are dotted around the manicured lawns, and crocheted cotton hammocks swing from umbrella pines." There is also a spa and a restaurant that serves locally sourced suckling lamb or Iberian pork.

Doubles from €210 adults-only (Cansimoneta.com; 00 34 971 816 110).

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