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Ammos Hotel, Crete, Greece Set on a sandy bay just a 30-minute drive from Crete’s Chania airport and five kilometres from the town’s gorgeous Venetian harbour, Ammos Hotel is an intimate, stylish and friendly haven overlooking the sea. Privately owned and run, it’s a lovely choice for friends or families looking to relax and enjoy island life.
The bright white and clean-lined exterior of Ammos’ building belies the striking interiors designed by architect Elisa Manola and owner Nikos Tsepetis. You’ll find interesting, colourful details at every turn, from an eclectic mix of mismatched chairs in the dining room to vibrant international artwork on the walls. There are 33 colourful guest rooms and suites, surrounded by gardens bedecked with herbs, cacti and fragrant blossoms. The décor is calm and uncluttered, with terrazzo floors, comfy beds and mosaictiled bathrooms with walk-in showers and organic toiletries. Fun pops of colour are provided here and there by African-print stools and statement walls. Most of the rooms have sea views, and the sea- and garden-view studios come with a small kitchenette, compact living area and terrace or balcony.
Ammos Hotel Crete Greece Photo Gallery
Ammos has a bijou treatment room decorated in earth tones where you can have excellent holistic massages with visiting local therapist Danae Gerasopoulou. Choose therapeutic full-body massage, deep-tissue massage or shiatsu. I had a super holistic massage, for which Danae used an organic Greek brand of massage oil called Apivita infused with lavender. She combined good, strong strokes with a little bit of breathing work and stretching to help relieve my blocked nose and aching muscles.
Ammos is positioned right on the beach, perfect for taking regular dips in the shallow turquoise sea. Alternatively, swim laps in the heated, outdoor hotel, taking a break to bask in the sunshine and gaze out to sea from the comfy sun loungers. Cleverly, pool hours don’t officially start till mid morning to preserve the morning peace for everyone, but no-one minds you doing your early morning lengths. Book private yoga classes by the pool each morning with local teacher Eleni Blazaki, an empathetic hatha yoga teacher who tailors her teaching expertly to any level. Ammos has a small gym with treadmill, elliptical trainer/walker, bench-press, weights and TRX equipment. Local instructors can also offer classes in TRX, Pilates and power yoga. Or take a trip to the Samaria Gorge, famous for its scenic hikes. You can also hire paddleboats nearby.
Focusing on Cretan and Greek specialities, Ammos’ food is astoundingly good, super fresh and served with personality and style by highly experienced waiters. The buffet breakfast includes Greek yoghurt, thymeinfused honey, delectable orange cake, ripe and tasty locally grown tomatoes, sweet and exquisite grapes and various delicacies made with fragrant parsley and mint as well as baked mini cheeses and spinach pies. Fresh smoothies, cocktails, salads and souvlaki are served by the pool all day, and lunches and dinners are interesting and tasty. Dinner one night was preceded by a very decent Greek cava with the freshest Calamari and tastiest black olives. We had a main of sea bass baked in paper with potatoes and courgettes, followed by a pomegranate cheesecake. I’d happily go back just to have another supper there WO one night! Special diets, including vegan, RDS: Caroline Sylger Jones is the founder of healthy travel website queenofretreats.com, a curated collection of retreats reviewed and recommended by trusted writers and wellbeing buffs. can be catered for. If you fancy trying another local restaurant, there are two local tavernas that are well worth a vist.
As well as couples and groups of friends, Ammos’ family-friendly facilities are perfect for those with younger children. It’s safe and discreet, and the perfect holiday solution for stressed parents. There’s even a playroom for young kids with a free, two-hour, nanny-supervised session daily. COST A room costs from 125 euros a night in low season. Breakfast costs 11 euros per adult and 7 euros per child under 10 (free for kids under 2). Yoga costs 40 euros for 60 minutes, massages from 50 euros for an hour; ammoshotel.com.