No Description Available.
Kinsterna Hotel and Spa, Greece
Monemvasia 23070, Greece
Tel: 30 27320 66300
Anemomilos Apartments, Folegandros, Greece
Tel: 30 22860 41309
Built in 1993, the family-run Anemomilos was one of the first boutique hotels in the Cyclades to appear somewhere other than Santorini or Mykonos, and it has continued to please. For one thing, its setting is spectacular: From atop a sea cliff, the 16 studios (each with an open-plan sleeping-living-kitchenette arrangement) all boast views only slightly less panoramic than those from the caldera of Santorini. (For the best views, opt for a blue-line apartment, or just hang out at the pool.) Additionally, the management is unusually progressive: They have long offered, for instance, a room designed with disabled guests in mind—something about as common in Greece as a nonsmoking section in a restaurant. The room decor is simple, pretty much the same traditional white with blue trim as the exterior, but it goes well with the simplicity of the island, which is just hard enough to get to that you won't be bothered much by the types of people who, if they do travel at all, should really spend their entire time on Santorini.
Closed October through March.
Mykonos Theoxenia, Mykonos, Greece
Mykonos Town, Mykonos 84600, Greece
Tel: 30 22890 22230, Tel: 800 337 4685 (Design Hotels, toll-free)
This 52-room retro pad right next door to the famous windmills and "Little Venice" evokes the 1960s—when Mykonos was a key jet-set party town and Ari and Jackie were regular visitors—thanks to an original structure by Greece's premier architect of that decade, Aris Kostantinidis. Inside there are walls of rough stone, turquoise and tangerine paintwork, Hessian drapes and op art prints, as well as space-age tables, and bucket chairs. Despite the lack of beach (there's a big pool) and dearth of views from the cheaper rooms, it's still a thoroughly hip place to stay.
Apanema Resort, Mykonos, Greece
Tel: 30 22890 28590
A Bellini thrust into your hand on arrival sets the tone at this adorable 17-room hotel, a ten-minute walk from Mykonos Town and close to the beach. It looks similar to the standard whitewashed cube with blue shutters, but inside it becomes clear someone cares. That someone is young owner Kriton Harakopoulos, who has decorated the place with drapes, planters, rugs, and other accents that add a homey chic. He also offers a cornucopian breakfast of croissants, pancakes, eggs, chocolate muffins, homemade bread, yogurt, and honey (served until early afternoon). AC, TV, room service (till nearly midnight), Molton Brown toiletries, and a floodlit freshwater pool with an adjacent bar complete the picture.
Closed October to April.
Belvedere, Mykonos, Greece
Mykonos Town, Mykonos 84600, Greece
Tel: 30 22890 25122
Checking into the Belvedere for the first time, you'll feel like you died and went to somebody's first wedding. Everything's white, right down to the shoes on the staff. That fact—plus the poolside pose-and-party scene, the slick cocktail lounge, the Nobu outpost, the clientele of jet-setters and A-gays stopping off between Bodrum and the Hamptons—makes this a slice of South Beach in Mykonos. If you're here to take in the nightlife and rub shoulders with the fashion flock, the Belvedere is the best place to stay. That's not the only reason to check in, though: Service is above the island norm (Pablo will take excellent care of you at the pool), and rooms, though moderately sized and not as elegant as the public spaces, come with niceties that are rare in other Mykonos properties (flat-screen TVs, cordless phones and hotel-wide Wi-Fi, bath products from Korres, and firm mattresses. The least-expensive rooms look out onto shrubbery; spring for a better view, since the hotel is located at the top of town, a superb position for sunsets. That also means you're a few minutes' walk (assuming you don't get lost among the alleyways) to everything in town. And when you get sick of tzatziki, there's sushi at hand, too.
Closed November through mid-April.
Casa Delfino Suites, Crete, Greece
Chania, Crete 73100, Greece
Tel: 30 28210 87400
This 17th-century Venetian mansion, restored to a level of luxury that would make its original owner envious, is one street short of perfection. Sitting just in from one of the most attractive harbors in Crete, the hotel's views of harborside life are blocked on all but the uppermost floor by an intervening row of buildings. Inward-looking guests will be delighted, however, by the sanctuary of Casa Delfino's hidden courtyard (just right for breakfast in warm weather) and by the suites themselves. Although the smaller 4 of the 22 suites can more accurately be described as rooms, there is nothing quite so satisfying, in some of the larger ones, as a vaulted stone ceiling overhead and a flat-screen TV that allows you to watch CNN over the tops of your toes.
Amirandes, Crete, Greece
Iraklio, Crete 71110, Greece
Tel: 30 28970 41103
Unlike most new luxury hotels in Greeceboutique properties where Americans can be most assured of sharing their Greek experience with other Americansthe 212-room Amirandes, 20 miles east of Iraklio, is a classic Greek beach resort. Which is to say it is grand and glitzy (think a Minoan palace surrounding a palm-lined reflecting pool the size of Lake Erie) and offers just about every dining, beach, and sports option imaginable (archery, anyone?). Still, relative solitude is possible: 68 rooms have their own swimming pool, and the villa section, almost a hotel within a hotel, has its own private beach. The hotel beaches are better for sunning than swimming, as the water is shallow and rocky, but there is an Olympic-size pool, and plenty of people around it with whom you can practice a language other than your own.
Domes of Elounda, Crete, Greece
Tel: 30 28410 41924
Rain is something you don't normally look forward to on a holiday, except possibly at the Domes of Elounda, a new hotel on the north coast of Crete where one of the architecturally inspired pleasures is the rainwater-style shower splashing down from beneath the high, domed roof of a couple-size circular Jacuzzi. Domes, as one might imagine, are a design element throughout the resort, which has the look of a Mediterranean village. Another visual constant are the earth tones throughout the 80 suites, all in two-story buildings and all but the junior versions with an hot tub as well. On a quiet stretch of gray-sand beach north of Elounda Village, the resort looks across the water toward the nearby islet of Spinalonga, the setting for British author Victoria Hislop's The Island.
Siorra Vittoria, Corfu, Greece
Corfu Town, Corfu 49100, Greece
Tel: 30 266 103 6300
Finally, a boutique hotel for Corfu. And it's a serene little beauty, too. On a quiet side street just a few steps off City Hall Square in Corfu Town, the Siorra Vittoria (named for the daughter of the original owner) is two rooms in a separate building and seven more in a three-story mansion dating back to 1823. A sense of a bygone era has been retained in all the rooms, but the one of greatest appealfor those willing to navigate the narrow, circular staircase to the top flooris the Junior Suite Vittoria, with its exposed-beam ceiling and view of the "new" fortress, completed in 1645. Further adding to the Siorra Vittoria's sense of sanctuary is a hidden garden where one can linger over an aperitif while only blocks away people are bargaining for T-shirts that proclaim "Aristotle is my bitch."
Perantzada 1811 Art Hotel, Ithaca, Greece
Vathy, Ithaca, Greece
Tel: 30 26740 33496
There are scores of "Vathy"s in the islands (it means "deep"), but this one is Ithaca's port and capital. Here you'll find a pale-blue traditional building designed by the German architect Ernst Schiller in 1811—it's the area's newest and most unusual hotel. Not to be confused with the German-based ArtHotel chain, Tsimaras is a three-hotel, family-owned operation with a great deal of style (its properties include the Emelisse Art Hotel on Cephalonia). The open-sided entrance terrace is made from village stone, downlights add to the atmosphere. Inside, there's a stark white Marrakech-meets–Clockwork Orange lounge, and 19 charming rooms and suites with white walls and furniture, pleasantly patterned bedspreads, drapes, and lampshades; it's all a few cuts above the narrow pine bed and whitewashed poured concrete that's standard in the islands. There's room service till midnight, which you might not need, seeing as you're in the port with its alternative dining options.
Leedas Villas, Zakynthos, Greece
Tel: 30 269 505 1305, Tel: 30 269 505 3491
Zakynthos Town was destroyed in the 1953 earthquake, but it was rebuilt afterward as an appealing waterfront hub with pleasant piazzas and a few surviving churches. The rest of the island—with the exception of some tacky resorts along Laganas Bay—is nearly as pristine as it was when the ruling Venetians branded it the "flower" of the region for its lush green interior. The Leedas compound takes full advantage of the natural surroundings: The five stone villas are set in national parkland, near a beach where loggerhead turtles bury their eggs in the sand each year. The property is also just across from the island of Marathonissi, where the owner, Dionysos Giatras, ferries visitors on his speedboat. He's also known to bring home fish for cookouts around the outdoor barbecue, and will arrange horseback riding or diving excursions. Less-adventurous guests can be found hanging around the pool or helping themselves to fresh produce from Giatras's organic garden. The stone-walled villas are plainly decorated, but all have kitchenettes and outdoor grills, perfect for preparing fruit salad and goat kebabs.
Emelisse Art Hotel, Cephalonia, Greece
Fiskardo, Cephalonia 28084, Greece
Tel: 30 267 404 1200
If ferrying around the Greek islands can sometimes be exhausting, the answer is a resort like the Emelisse, which exists primarily as a place to bask in the Greek sunshine. Cephalonia is the largest of the Ionian Islands, so it rarely feels crowded even when tourists are swarming its gorgeous beaches (which you might have seen in the film Captain Corelli's Mandolin). Guests of the Emelisse aren't likely to make it off-property—it's just a short walk to the sea, and the two pools are ideal for lolling (beginner diving classes are held in one). The 63 rooms are spread among 14 yellow stone villas, and their decor is minimalist and vaguely Asian, with wood furniture in clean geometric shapes, neutral fabrics, slate floors, and rice-paper lamps. Enterprising types might choose to swim in the nearby sea caves, play early-morning tennis, or even visit Fiskardo, the only town to survive the earthquake of 1953 (hundreds died, and it was considered an international humanitarian disaster). No cars are allowed on the property: yet another happy reason to stay put.
Closed from the last week of October through March.
Cavalieri Hotel, Corfu, Greece
Corfu Town, Corfu 49100, Greece
Tel: 30 266 103 9336
A 17th-century, six-story mansion that was once home to a family of Corfiote nobles, the Cavalieri now has an elegant roof bar where young couples gather on summer evenings for cocktails and sunset-watching. The 49 renovated rooms are, well, boring, with standard-issue wooden furniture, clean but basic bathrooms, and upholstery in uninspiring earth tones. But since the hotel is set right on the Liston promenade in the center of Corfu Town, there's lots of excitement right outside. Book a room with a bay view during the right time of the year (Palm Sunday, Holy Saturday, August 11, or the first Sunday in November), and you'll be able to watch marching bands, schoolchildren, and priests parade beneath your window with the relics of St. Spyridon (who died in A.D. 348, and who supposedly performed miracles). One of the best rooms is No. 53—it has windows that face both the harbor and town—but film buffs will want No. 51, the room William Holden lived in while filming Fedora.
Ochre & Brown, Greece
Athens 10554, Greece
Tel: 30 210 331 2950
Chic hotels are such a new idea in this neighborhood that guests often have to show taxi drivers the way, but this 11-room jewel box is worth the effort to find. The neighborhood is Psyrri, once the haunt of the downtrodden and the unsavory, but now a fast-rising, if still somewhat bohemian, center of Athens's most happening bars and nightclubs. And Ochre & Brown is only a block or so from the heart of it. The hotel is within easy walking distance of central Athens's most interesting sites, including the Parthenon, about ten minutes away. While minimalist-cool stylish, the rooms are small, the best of them being the junior suite, with a terrace view, barely, of the Parthenon. The breakfast (no buffet, this) and the service make up for it, though, with the kind of pampering one would expect when there are less than a dozen rooms to look after.
Fresh Hotel, Greece
Tel: 30 210 524 8511, Tel: 800 337 4685
At first glance, this hotel three blocks from Omonia Square doesn't seem particularly compelling. Neither its cookie-cutter architecture nor its 133 "design hotel-style" rooms, with crisp white walls, pallid wood floors, and flashes of orange, amethyst, and hot pink, do much to get the motor running. But—and this is a big "but"—the value is not to be sneezed at. Especially if you're cool enough to take advantage of the scene-y rooftop pool and Air Lounge Roof Bar (with an Acropolis view), and young enough to have the burgeoning nightlife of nearby Psyrri high on your agenda.
Baby Grand, Greece
Athens 10551, Greece
Tel: 30 210 325 0900
You could stay in one of the few conventionally decorated guest rooms at the Baby Grand. But what would be the point? The wow factor here is that a group of graphic artists were let loose to turn an ordinary space into something uniquely playful, as you can't help but notice when arriving at the check-in desk to discover it is a Mini Cooper convertible. Fifty-five of the 79 smallish rooms are even more over the top, featuring a graffitilike decor with themes that range from the Smurfs to what appears to be a supermagnified rendition of the creatures you might find by looking into a microscope. The piped-in sound of birdsong in the hallways adds to the playfulness, as does the name of the restaurant, Meat Me, where, not surprisingly, burgers and steaks are prominent on the menu. Facilities include a small spa, gym, and swimming pool. The location, near Omonia Square, is within walking distance of the Acropolis, although the neighborhood is authentically seedy enough (no faux graffiti here) that you won't want to wander its side streets at night.