CHC Athina Palace Resort & Spa
Travel Blogs from Agia Pelagia
After visiting museum yesterday, we were excited to see the real city. Many other tourists had the same plan! A cruise ship from Eastern Europe flooded the site with people. Even so, it was marvelous to imagine how the people lived in this city several thousand years ago. Dave captured the clear sky, massive columns, ...
... Kazantzakis, author of Zorba the Greek. Worked our way back through the center of Heraklion to what is considered the top archeological museum in Greece. The Minoan artifacts were incredibly beautiful. Surprising to learn that for all their advances, the Greek and Roman civilizations that followed in many ways had art that was cruder than the Minoans who inhabited ...
... rides down and Aimee takes the cable car. Back to the ship by 8:30 for our final 3 course dinner and pack to leave our cruise the following morning, we then also discover we're both a tad sunburnt in random places, Aimee in her belly button (who would have thought to sunblock in there) and Sean on his thighs and tummy.. Lucky Greek island cruising with 30 degree days and burning hot sun are at an end. Tomorrow we disembark and head for the Albanian ...
It's too easy for these years to roll off your tongue without understanding them. As the time of Julius Ceasar is to us so the time of King Minos was to Julius Ceasar. Four thousand years ago the Minoan people built the Palace of Knossos from soft local stone. They built the hydraulic system to pipe fresh spring water six miles through terracotta pipes into their palace. They built a palace of 1400 rooms, so large, complex and ...
... alas this was not to be. We saw other tour guides being more engaged with their tours, ie walking them from feature to feature, holding up maps and diagrams and pointing things out. Oh well.... I often wandered away from the group trying to get the pictures I wanted, sometimes I was successful sometimes not. After Knossos we went to the Heraklion Museum, it was fantastic, once again the guide was not. Then she walked us to the market ...
Historical Traveler Reviews CHC Athina Palace Resort & Spa Agia Pelagia
Great for a week in September!!
Just returned from a 2 week stay and felt that I had to make comments as I was horrified about reveiws that was made in August. I did not read the reviews until after I had booked for a two week stay - I tried to cancel but would have lost full payment - was not looking forward to it one bit. I did take notice of the comments about the amount of steps and asked sunstar leisure to contact the hotel to ask for a room near restaurant - I received e-mail within a couple of hours confirming request. Our hotel room was directly in front of the reception and swimming pool - great views and sun on balcony until 7pm. Room was kept very clean and towels and bedlinen changed daily. Staff very friendly especially in pool bars/main bar and restaurants. Food was very good ( a bit samey after 2nd week) but that is usual in all hotels. Definately not a 5 star but a good 3-4. We are a couple in our fifties and enjoyed the relaxing days by the pool and at the beach - 5 euros for sun beds for 2 (beach) but was quite happy to pay for such a beautiful setting. Please do not be put off but I can quite understand the difference that we noticed going in September where the hotel is not fully booked. Would go again (same time) but for one week only. Met some great people of all ages so we did not miss the lack of evening entertainment!!. Please feel free to email if you need any futher information.
Nice relaxing week
My boyfriend and I stayed at the Athina Palace for one week during Septemeber 2004. We had a decent time. We did not think the hotel was 5*. We did, however, think it was 4* or top class 3*.
All inclusive is great - the alcoholic measures were obscenely large though!
The rooms were big and clean and tidy and everything I'd expect from a 4* hotel. Really nice bathroom etc etc - no problems with any of it, and yes, we had a sea view from our balcony. The views from the hotel in general are stunning.
The hotel is, literally, in the middle of nowhere. We, however, knew this when we booked the holiday and if you're just looking for a relaxing week by the beach/pool, Athina Palace does the job just fine. Be warned though - independent trips away from the hotel are expensive. The bus service isn't great but we heard of people who'd used it without any problems.
There are 3 pools, a kids pool and a jacuzzi. Be warned - they are very very cold as fresh water is continually pumped in. There's a good pool bar at the main pool - this is where the entertainment during the day runs from too. There were always things going on, entertainment wise, but no one ever bothered with it and we felt kinda sorry for the animation team :(
The beach was nice - the beach bar does all inclusive drinks which we weren't expecting! It's not shingle, it's not quite sand but it's very very fine pebbles and very comfortable to walk along barefoot. The sea was warm and clear. There's a bus for the lazy (like me!) which runs every half an hour between the beach and reception.
The food was excellent. Okay, by the end of the week it'd become a bit samey but what can you expect from a buffet?! The food does indeed consist of basics - pasta, chips, a potato dish, breads, salads, pasta salads etc. But there were always lots of meat dishes to choose from and different trays of vegetables, pasta sauces etc every mealtime. We *very* rarely saw food being reused in the next meal - and no, no vegetables turned up at breakfast! The food was usually very hot too. The snackbar at the pool wasn't wonderful but after the amount we ate at breakfast/lunch/dinner we barely used it. Ice cream is always plentiful!
The staff were friendly but the one thing which made the hotel a 4* not a 5* was that you saw the staff - in 5* hotel's they're normally very discreet. It did occasionally take a while to get served but I think the hotel got it pretty right.
By the end of the week, we were glad we weren't staying for another, not because we hadn't enjoyed it but because we felt out holiday could have been tainted by being there for another week - cabin fever may have kicked in a bit! I would go back, but only for a week at a time, and only for the same sort of holiday - pure relaxation in the sun.
Sightseers - you will hate this hotel.
Clubber/pubbers - you will hate this hotel.
People looking for a relaxing holiday in the sun, by a pool or at the beach - you will LOVE this place.
It's not that bad!!!
My husband and I have just returned from holiday and to be honest after reading the reviews was quietly dreading it. Thankfully we had a very enjoyable holiday! I know the food is not quite up to 5* standard but there was plenty of it and after all we were in Greece so we knew that sausage, egg and chips would not be on the menu.
The hotel room was fine with fantasic sea views, our towels and bedding were changed every day bar one, and kept spotlessly clean by the maids.
The staff were friendly and very helpful and when I reported two minor problems to reception they were sorted the same day.
The only thing that I really felt spoilt the holiday was the isolation of the hotel. We would have liked to have a walk in the evening but there was nowhere to go! We did hire a car for two days which was great.
Probably would not go back there because of its location and that would be the only reason.
Hope this has been of some use if you are thinking of going there.
Holiday From Hell!!
Date of Stay August, 2004 email@example.com
We were sold this holiday firstly by looking on the web at The Athina Palace Hotel's own web site and how fantastic did it look & read. We were sold this as a 5* hotel which was All Inclusive and we were not the only ones it would seem that thought that. When we complained to the rep there were so many people there to see her and all for the same reasons. This took several hours!!
This hotel only warrants a 2-3* at best. The Hotel staff were totally rude, aggressive and unhelpful.
The food was awful, it was repetitive and on occasions reheated and served to you for your "American Style Breakfast" - I don't think the Americans eat Brussels Sprouts, Carrots, Green Beans and Sweetcorn for breakfast - do they??
The snack bars were a disgrace and the food was stale and uninviting definitely not 5* cuisine.
This Hotel was so remote the nearest town was a taxi ride away at the cost of 30 Euros for the return we only did this once and when we got there we had a fantastic meal in a restaurant right on the sea front it was breathtaking and the service was 5* with smiles!!!
They don't tell you that you need a mountaineering course to navigate your way to the restaurant or down to the beach - ours was 130 steps to and from the hotel to our bungalow. Going down to the beach our wonderful hotel supplies you with transport - which never ran on time and if you dare take your life in your hands - it's a minibus and they are not too fussy about keeping it road worthy it sounded like it was on its last legs and the side door was missing completely!!
The All Inclusive bar in the evening was understaffed and considering this Hotel was fully booked - so that meant 850 guests - how do they think that only 2 or 3 staff of an evening on the only bar that was open was right??? No wonder it took most people 20 - 30 minutes to get served their All Inclusive drinks. Also later on in the evenings they would run out of glasses - 5* service at its best!!!
This was not by any means a CHEAP HOLIDAY and knowing what I now know - I would have preferred not to have had a holiday at all!!!
We booked for a fortnight and ended up staying One Week as we had had enough, we would have left much earlier than this had we been able to get a flight home.
I would not recommend this hotel to anyone!!
We arrived back to Luton last Tuesday 24th
People like to have a good moan obviously from reading this !!
This hotel is definately not a 5* but then again nor were the prices paid by most people either. For the money I was happy with this place. The views from the hotel and balcony terrace area were superb. The beach was generally peacefull and quiet for those that made the effort to walk down to it (or got the bus) For those that did make the effort it was well worthwhile even if it didnt look that good from the top of the Hotel. Most people seemed content to sit around the main pool, do nothing all day and then moan about it being crowded ???
The food was ok but samey, much the same as any buffet style hotel. (restaurant staff seemed miserable)
Rooms basic but fine and great climate control style aircon that could be left on all night. All rooms seemed to have great sea views.
The AI dinks were also good and you could order pretty much what you wanted and as many as you wanted, the bar was only particualrly busy one night. Bar staff were great and worked hard.
I wouldnt rush to return but we did have a great time all the same, just use the beach, get a car for a two and enjoy the views.
If you want to contact me feel free to drop me a line
But we paid for a 5 star suite........
Do not stay here...EVER..!!!
This place was booked and advertised as a 4.5 star hotel. We visited August 2004.
These are the "features" which many others and I found by stopping here.
Every meal, every night is pasta or chips and basic meat.
Flies are everywhere in restaurant, on one occasion 6 at once on my table. I accept that you get flies but no attempts are made to reduce them.
The Italian restaurant is open 3 nights a week and serves the same food as the one below but this one offers small slices of cold bland pizza and first goes at the stuff before it gets dropped into the trays in the standard restaurant.
Water is not free so prepare to pay for it.
They even serve Brussels and chips for breakfast. One morning my wife was told to go away when she asked her pancake to be cooked on both sides, as she didn't want to eat the raw runny mixture.
There is no Gym.
The indoor pool is closed and is never open.
Sports Facilities consists of a locked empty office with a few cables on the floor.
It takes on average 20 minutes to get served at the bar in the evening.
All Inclusive Snacks etc
All snacks (ice creams, sandwiches etc), are not all inclusive despite whatever info you have to the contrary. One guy argued with them and took some sandwiches, which he said were all-inclusive as per the brochure specified...Good for him and we all cheered. Until he was arrested by police for stealing sandwiches. He showed them to an Internet console and showed them the advertised info and charges were dropped.
There is nothing for children/teenagers to do apart from play around the pool in the dark and dangerous slippery steps.
We entertained ourselves by queuing at the bar, attempting to find somewhere to sit or going back to our room and having an early night.
The bungalows are at best between 2-3 star.
One couple we talked to had not had clean towels or sheets at all during the holiday and indeed on the last evening had nothing and were waiting until after midnight to get sheets so they could sleep.
We booked a honeymoon 5 star suite and ended up with 2 single beds in an awful apartment with mismatching furniture, door that hung by 1 hinge and a shower that's electrical switch dangled near the shower head as it was not screwed to the wall. It was the sort of room you'd expect by paying £200 and waiting to see where you were going to end up. Standards do differ from country to country but this room didn't even come close to anything more than 3 star.
There are steps everywhere and you need to be a hardened walker to get anywhere here. One man with arthritis was given a room with over 100 steps up to complex, he complained and they said tough. He had to hire a car to take him to the restaurant at 40 Euros a day... 40 Euros a day to eat cold chips, brussel sprouts and covered in flies.
Fees are expensive and vary depending how much they want to rip you off.
On site shop.
Not a bad shop but the shopkeeper maths were not the greatest, many occasions we had to point out that the change was wrong and he had charged too much.
Go here if you are a sadist and enjoy misery and wasting money.
This is not a bitter review, this is how it was and how it compares to many places I have visited and travelled to.
3 star at best
The hotel staff were rude and our a/c didn't work. After a few days of compalining the Manager told me that if I complained once more she would call the police. The a/c in the public rooms was not used so there was never any respite from the heat.
The food was samey and cold and the tables were never cleared in the restaurant we had to ask for them to be cleared and then stand and wait while they did it.
The pool bars did not have snacks or cakes only if you wanted to pay for a stale baguette and the beach bar did not have the advertised Greek specialities.
The rooms were very basic and drawers etc were broken.
The bar did nt have enough staff at night and you could wait 20 mins or so to be served.
The resort was set on a hill and to walk to the beach / pool / restaurant etc you had to climb hundreds of steps and steep hills.
At best it should get a rating of 3 star and I give it 3 out of 10 myself.
It is not all inclusive, and the web sites I have seen are misleading.
Would never go again to the Athina Palace
I have just come back from the Athina Palace, staying for one week. Unfortunately, when I booked my holiday I looked at this website for reviews and I thought I had booked a great place - how wrong I was. This hotel is not 5 star at all, I would stay it is around a 3 star at most. The accommodation is basic; the food was the same for Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner (Brussels sprouts for Breakfast!).
There were no snacks at the beach bar only at the pool bar, which were interesting to say the least! The beach was small and had no water sports only pedalo's, they served drinks but as they did not serve snacks as advertised you had to go up to the hotel for your Lunch. They lay on a bus, which was on its last legs to take you back up the road, as it was such a high incline and distance you could not walk it.
In the evening there was only one bar open for the whole resort - they say the English are great for queuing and you will get some great experience at this hotel. Also is you like early evenings this hotel will be great for you as well, there is no entertainment at all unless you are a child. If you do wish to venture out of the hotel you will need to get a taxi for the nearest town which will cost you around 10 Euro one way there is nothing within walking distance. While I stayed at the hotel, twice the holiday representatives came to do a welcome briefing for the guests who had just arrived, and on each occasion all the guests were making complaints about the standard of the hotel and the service, they all wanted there money back. On the night I checked out at 04:00 in the morning, a woman was still trying to get her air conditioning sorted as it was blowing hot air into the room. I have never had a bad holiday, but it seems I was due one.
Don't forget your walking boots!
On arrival at 6.00am we asked at reception for some water after a delayed long flight, as we were very thirsty. We were told that we had to wait until breakfast started at 7.45am even though we went All Inclusive. We could not even buy any water as there were no vending machines and the shops were shut. Not a good start to the holiday!
The hotel is situation on the side of a mountain that meant that there were lots and lots of steps. From our bungalow to the restaurant there were 98 steps and a small hill to climb. Great if you wanted to buck the trend and actually lose weight on an All Inclusive holiday (which we did unintentionally), not so good if you were in poor health.
We found the hotel modern, clean and tidy. The swimming pool by reception was excellent as was the pool bar. The main pool area was 100 steps away from the reception pool and tended to be crowded and noisy. There were not enough sun loungers by the poolside so several people were "reserving" their places with towels and then going to breakfast. Not a problem provided you were by the poolside by 9.00am
The food was overall good, albeit a bit repetitive after a few days. The Italian restaurant nights (Tues, Thur and Sat) made a welcome change. Don't forget to book in advance at reception though.
Can only say it was not entertaining. It was on every night at 9.30pm.
The satellite TV was all in Greek with the very occasional English program that had Greek sub-titles.
Bring a pack of cards with you or other games and be prepared to play them extensively.
It was a small grey gravel beach at the foot of the hotel, with a bar next to it. They also charged for sun loungers so unless you really wanted to swim in the sea, I did not see the point in going to teh beach.
You are 10 km from the local resort of Agia Pelagia, although there is a beach and taverna just past the hotel beach. If you want to explore properly then you will need a car (cost 30 pounds per day plus petrol).
Agia Pelagia looks lovely from the hotel at night. However, don't be tempted to take a taxi out there for the evening as there may not be a taxi available to take you back to the hotel!
A good place to come if you don't mind the steps and are happy to stay by the poolside and drink all day long. Lovely views from the hotel and very clean and tidy. Certainly not a 4 star but maybe a good 3 star.
Loved the Made
I came back from my 7 days spend in Crete, in a such lovely hotel bungalow. A lot of plants and flowers, a genial architecture with many stairs and roads, a little difficult way to attend the beach, but after such plenty meals is better to do some sport. The beach "Made"is small, but so beautiful and the sea is in three colors, thew view is excellent, the water was warm and clear with litlle fish in it. The accomodation was almost perfect with spacious room, large bathroom and silent balcony with a beautiful view. The hotel staff was gentle, but some roughness in spech, but all the greeks are the same. The animation staff, mostly italians, was under estimation, so bored and sometimes indecent. But overall, if you want to be calm, if you want to enjoy the sea, the sun and the vegetation I will reccomend such isolated but beautiful place like Iberostar Athina Palace.