Zu Nillu


Favignana, the Egadi Islands

  • 8 Sleeps
  • 4  Bedrooms
  • 4  Bathrooms

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About the Villa

Zu Nillu is like nothing you've ever seen!

Perched above its own labyrinthine Roman stone quarry, into which a beautiful pool and a Mediterranean garden have been inserted, Zu Nillu is theatrical, wow-inspiring and a truly unique proposition! You simply won’t find any house quite like this, and certainly not one with a private garden dominating (and accessing) Favignana's mythical Cala Rossa, one of the Med’s most beautiful sea spots.

"Zu Nillu is spectacular and extraordinary - the villa and grounds and the setting on Favignana! All four couples who stayed with us in May 2018 agreed that the site was unlike any other place that any of us had visited and not easy to describe in words. Although we stayed a week, as the end of the week neared we wished we had planned to stay two weeks.” David Dowell, US, May 2018

Zu Nillu's fascinating history

When it came to choosing a location to shoot their latest video, English band Friendly Fires opted for Favignana and our villa Zu Nillu. After its 15 minutes of fame, Zu Nillu has resumed doing what it does best: welcoming guests who come in search of tranquillity, privacy and a truly unique ambience.

Internet Connections Explained


All The Thinking Traveller's villas have some kind of Internet facility and, where possible, we try to ensure that this is an ADSL broadband Wi-Fi connection.

However, some rural areas and those far from the main towns and cities have not yet been connected to the high-speed broadband network. Therefore, in some of our villas we offer an alternative type of connection (specified in the amenities table of each individual villa page). 

Please note that although we work very hard to provide reliable internet service at our villas, these services are potentially erratic and can fail due to network failures completely out of our control. We regret that we cannot accept responsibility for loss of connection due to such network failures.

Here is some information about the most common connection types:

ADSL Broadband

This is by far the fastest and most reliable connection type available and uses traditional copper wires. In the UK, ADSL is most commonly referred to as broadband. It is suitable for most surfing requirements. Generally an ADSL line is only available within two miles of a telephone exchange, so in rural or more remote areas it usually not available.

An ADSL Internet connection in a villa can then be distributed using a Wi-Fi router, allowing a wireless connection with one or more device, or by a cable, which can be plugged into most laptops.

NB If a fast, constant and reliable Internet connection is vital for you (i.e. you expect to be working a lot during your holiday), please specify this to your Villa Specialist. It may be better to rent a villa with an ADSL broadband connection.

3G WiFi Internet routers

In some of our villas, 3G Wi-Fi Internet connections are provided by a small router unit that uses the 3G mobile network, similar to that used by many mobile phones. The unit receives the signal and retransmits it wirelessly making it possible for a few devices to connect at the same time. 3G Wi-Fi units work best in the immediate area around them (i.e. they won’t create a Wi-Fi environment throughout the entire villa) and so the best connection will be within close range of the unit, usually in the same room.

The signal may be affected by weather conditions (i.e. strong winds or storms), and the overall strength depends entirely on the service provider's presence in the area. We cannot accept responsibility for slow or absent signals.

Please note that 3G Wi-Fi is provided for basic Internet browsing and checking of email only. Guests are requested not to download large files such as movies or make Skype video calls, as most units have a maximum monthly data usage of 10Gb.

NB If a fast, constant and reliable Internet connection is vital for you (i.e. you expect to be working a lot during your holiday), please specify this to your Villa Specialist. It may be better to rent a villa with a normal ADSL connection. 


Mobile Broadband Internet Dongles/Keys

Dongles, or Internet keys, can be slotted into a USB port on your computer and use a data SIM card to connect to a 3G or other data network, normally supplied by mobile phone networks. At the villas where this is provided, clients are usually requested to buy their own data SIM card and top up as they go (details of where and how to purchase one are provided in the House Guide you will receive before departure).

The signal may be affected by weather conditions (i.e. strong winds or storms), and the overall strength depends entirely on the service provider's presence in the area. We cannot accept responsibility for slow or absent signals.

NB If a fast, constant and reliable Internet connection is vital for you (i.e. you expect to be working a lot during your holiday), please specify this to your Villa Specialist. It may be better to rent a villa with a normal ADSL conection. 

WiMAX / Satellite connections

WiMAX and satellite Internet connections have performance levels similar to cabled ADSL hi-speed Internet connections. Wi-Fi access within the property is provided by a special modem-router. WiMAX and Satellite connections are present in our villas when there is no normal cabled broadband infrastructure in the area (still quite common in more remote areas). These kind of connections may be affected by atmospheric conditions, however, so we cannot guarantee that the signal will be as constant as cabled connections. The connection speed of this type connection in our Ionian Island villas is a little slower and comes with a limit of Mbs, so guests are requested not to download large files, stream films or use Skype to make calls.

Connecting to the Internet abroad using your smartphone or tablet (roaming)

As of June 2017, there are no roaming charges for EU citizens (with an EU provider) travelling within the EU. 

If you are travelling from outside the EU and wish to use your smartphone or tablet while on holiday, here are a few tips for cutting down on foreign data-roaming charges:

The first thing to do is to check with your provider to see if there are any special deals available (there's usually something on offer). You should also make sure your phone is unlocked (you can ask your operator to do this) if you wish to buy a foreign SIM card while you're away.

If there are no suitable deals available from your operator (and your phone/tablet has been unlocked), we recommend you buy a local prepaid data SIM card (details of where and how can be found in your House Guide). It might also be useful to bring a cheap handset, put your UK SIM into the cheap handset and the local data SIM into your smartphone, so that any data you access will be charged at the local rate. If you do buy a local SIM, most smart phones can then be used to provide a Wi-Fi hotspot, providing data access for up to five devices, including smartphones, tablets and laptops.

Finally, when abroad, switch off 3G, switch off ‘data roaming’ on iPhones or switch the priority to Wi-Fi rather than 3G on Symbian devices, thus avoiding charges when your phone attempts to access emails.



  • Accommodates (max)  8
  • Bedrooms  4
  • Double beds  3
  • Twins  1
  • Bathrooms  4
  • ... of which en suite  1
  • Daily maid service ¹
  • Cook 
  • Pizza chef 
  • Staff/owner on the grounds 
  • Garden gate beach/sea access 
  • Pool (LxW in metres)  4.5x8
  • Air conditioning ²
  • Heating 
  • Safe 
  • Washing machine 
  • Dishwasher 
  • Microwave oven 
  • Bluetooth speakers 
  • Satellite TV 
  • DVD player 
  • Stereo 
  • Satellite Wi-Fi Internet [i] 
  • Wood-burning pizza oven 
  • Barbecue 
  • Private Parking 
  • Shopping service 
  • Sea views 
  • Easy walk to beach/sea access 
  • The Thinking Traveller local support 24/7 
= yes/present = optional/on request
¹ daily cleaning can be arranged on request
² except for lower ground double bedroom


Inside: Zu Nillu starts on ground level and descends into the moving spectacle of the colourful quarry garden. On the ground floor the main entrance takes one into a cosy living room with tuff stone vaulted ceilings and antique tiled floors. Heading straight on, one accesses the master bedroom, which has an en-suite bathroom with sunken bath and shower. The living room flows into a dining room and then on to the small but practical kitchen. Just across a shady terrace outside the ground floor accommodation and down a few steps, is a shower room. From here a few more external steps lead down to the second part of the house, comprising three more bedrooms (two doubles and a twin), connected via an internal staircase. The doubles have shower rooms (with separate external access), while the twin uses the shower room on the upper terrace or one of those next to the other bedrooms. All bedrooms are air conditioned, with the exception of the smallest downstairs room, which backs onto the cool rock of the quarry.

Outside: this is what Zu Nillu is all about! If the bedrooms, kitchen and living areas are imbued with a stylish charm, the rest of the property is just out of this world! Starting from the top are a couple of roof terraces with truly jaw-dropping views over Cala Rossa, the sea, Favignana and even Trapani and Erice on the Sicilian "mainland". Outside the upper floor living room is a shady terrace with barbecue, which is ideal for long lazy lunches. Steps lead down to a second terrace and then down into the vibrantly fertile Mediterranean quarry garden. Paths lead through the fig, pomegranate and carob trees towards the glorious pool, what seems to be a private outdoor theatre and an inspirational al fresco bathroom! Exploration of these gardens throws up continual suprises and you'll soon be chuckling at the wonder of it all! Across the path in front of the house is a second private garden with shady trees and a panoramic "belvedere" overlooking the translucent waters of Cala Rossa, one of the most beautiful stretches of coastline anywhere in the Mediterranean. No one else has these views because there are no other houses nearby - you are in a truly unique position... privileged indeed! And if that wasn't enough, a gate leads from the garden to a private path that takes you down to the bay below. Out of the peak summer weeks, when it gets busy, Cala Rossa will be pretty much all yours too!


Think About

Guests at Zu Nillu are struck by the theatricality of the house and its grounds and so it might not be much of a surprise to learn that it is owned by one of Italy's most illustrious cinematic families!

The extremely discreet and helpful caretaker will visit the property daily.

Zu Nillu isn't a house for everyone, though! There are some drops from one or two of the terraces and a few unrailed walkways - many of the photos in the slideshow illustrate these aspects. There are also some caves in the more remote parts of the quarry garden. Because of these aspects we do not recommend Zu Nillu to groups with young children. Please check with us if you have any concerns before booking.