Anyone can book a hotel online these days, but demand is growing for expert advisers who know exactly where to get the best plate of pasta con le sarde in Palermo or where to go for a blow-the-budget fishing trip in Russia's Kamchatka peninsula. Bespoke specialists can open doors that would otherwise remain firmly shut.
Similarly, you won't find any of the six farmhouses on this Val d'Orcia estate among the pages of any tour operators' brochures, but Italy specialist Bellini Travel can get you in. Set in one of southern Tuscany's loveliest valleys, all rolling fields and hilltop villages, the six farmhouses on the grounds of the estate are owned and decorated by one of Italy's leading interior designers. It's a bit like staying in an idealised World of Interiors version of your own home, but with better service and weather, and someone to tidy up. AO'R
From £7,500 per week, the smallest farmhouse sleeps 10 people, 020 7602 7602, www.bellinitravel.com