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Crete

Sneak peek: inside “the most stylish hotel in Crete”

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Sneak peek: inside “the most stylish hotel in Crete”

CAYO Exclusive Resort and Spa – one of Greece’s most hotly-anticipated new hotel in 2021 – is expected to open in Crete on August 1. Ahead of the doors opening this weekend, Hotel Designs got a sneak peek inside…

It must come as a compliment to the Italian designer Gian Paolo Venier that his latest hotel project, CAYO Exclusive Resort and Spa, which opens this weekend, is already being hailed ‘Crete’s most stylish hotel’.

Taking luxury, gastronomy and design to a new level on the island, the property will open with a mind-body balancing spa, four gastronomic restaurants, stylish rooms, suites and villas with private plunge pools and unrivalled vistas of Spinalonga Island.

A stone’s throw from sought-after Elounda, CAYO is situated in peaceful Plaka, a quaint village lined with boutiques, traditional tavernas and a sun-soaked beach.

Image credit: CAYO

“CAYO was created with the environment in mind – alongside its innovative reusable energy sources, guests are greeted with a seedling, which they can plant anywhere around the resort.”

Drawing from a calming and neutral palette, Venier has blended cool greys, soft blues and greens with brushed marble, chic glass and stone in a nod toward the historical locale and architecture of nearby ancient city of Olous.

Image credit: CAYO

Awash with natural daylight, guestrooms and suites offer uninterrupted views of the ocean, complete with private terrace and heated plunge pool. CAYO was created with the environment in mind – alongside its innovative reusable energy sources, guests are greeted with a seedling, which they can plant anywhere around the resort. 

Image credit: CAYO

With a farm to fork ethos, the menus at CAYO’s four restaurants use the freshest seasonal produce, locally-sourced from selected eco-friendly farms and the resort’s own organic garden. Curated by Chef Lefteris Lazarou, the first Greek chef to be awarded with one Michelin Star, dishes range from authentic Greek to modern Mediterranean fare. In the spa, ancient rituals are combined with cutting-edge treatment techniques, based around the concept of the spiritual, cultural and natural environment.

Image credit: CAYO

Promising to promote inner-peace and restore wellness, CAYO Spa houses three spacious treatment rooms, steam, sauna and relaxation pool. From Yoga and Pilates to detox therapies and mental wellbeing, the fitness centre takes guests on a personalised journey, and the expert team are on hand to curate a 360’ programme. 

While you cannot question the thoughtful design scheme and meaningful hospitality initiatives that the hotel shelters, the jury is out as to whether this is the most stylish hotel in Crete. Feel free to let us know your thoughts over on Twitter. Whether or not it deserves that bold status, there is no denying that its opening will take the destination’s luxury and gastronomy status up a rank or two. 

Image credit: CAYO

Crete’s The Royal Blue prepares to open doors after extensive renovation

1024 683 Katy Phillips

The hotel says the works will place it at the top table of Cretan hospitality.

The five star Royal Blue in Crete will open its doors again this month after a major facelift to its rooms, suites, reception, lobby, bars and restaurants.

Located between Rethymnon and Heraklion on the Greek island’s northern coast, the will also be reopening with a new outdoor gym and bar, adults-only gourmet restaurant and new 507 square feet marina lined with its own private beaches.

With 190 rooms, waterfront suites and villas offering 180 degree views of the coastline, the hotel says the works will place it at the top table of Cretan hospitality.

The marina will moor up to 27 boats and include three beaches, with one reserved exclusively for adults, set within a design aesthetic that seeks to balance the authenticity of local Cretan culture and heritage with contemporary influences.


Symposium is the resort’s main restaurant where guests can witness dishes being cooked fresh in front of them, while the new adults-only mystical à la carte restaurant is Cave: an idyllic backdrop for romantic dining. For guests seeking authentic Cretan cuisine is Elia, the resort’s pool-side restaurant.

Discreetly hidden in its own private bay the hotel is now dressed in what it describes as muted tones, natural woods, clean lines and crisp whites.