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art deco inspired interior of Olympos Naoussa Restaurant at ON Residence

ON Residence: The revival of a Legend

730 565 Pauline Brettell
ON Residence: The revival of a Legend

The emblematic ON Residence, a partnership between TOR Hotel Group and Grivalia Hospitality, is one of Greece’s most anticipated hotel arrivals, breathing new life into the centre of Thessaloniki. We found out more about this historical renovation…

art deco inspired interior of Olympos Naoussa Restaurant at ON Residence

The lights at the historic Olympos Naoussa are about to turn back on. Thessaloniki will welcome, not only a legendary restaurant that brings back the glamour of a bygone era, but also a unique hotel that aims to redefine luxury hospitality in Greece’s co-capital. A true seafront jewel in the heart of the city, with unobstructed views of Thermaikos bay, ON Residence marks a new chapter for the TOR Hotel Group, one of Greece’s most established hospitality firms, operating since 1925. In addition, its opening is a vote of confidence in the tourist market of northern Greece by leading investment fund, Grivalia Hospitality.

The iconic restaurant, Olympos Naoussa, was the heart of Thessaloniki’s jet-setting society for decades, acting as a favourite hangout for celebrities and politicians such as former prime ministers George Papandreou and Constantine Karamanlis, Giscard d’Estaing and many more, until its closure in the mid-90s.

“Now, Olympos Naoussa returns to the city of Thessaloniki. Our vision to revive the historic restaurant, and together with the Tornivoukas family, to create a hotel destination of unparalleled beauty and a high level of service is close to completion,” said George Chryssikos, CEO of Grivalia. “We are certain that all visitors will love and embrace it, as we did from the first moment.”

The main restaurant, Olympos Naoussa, will be on the ground floor, along with a beautiful inner courtyard, the cocktail bar, Tiger Loop, a modern gym, and a specially designed mezzanine ideal for business meetings and events.

ON Residence will have 60 beautifully designed guestrooms and suites. Characterised by high quality materials and bold designs, the guestrooms are designed to create an expression of timeless chic. With the brief of classic design meets calm luxury, the rooms are decorated in natural colour tones with touches of light pink and green.

bedroom design in natural tones at ON Residence with seaview

Image credit: ON Residence

For Konstantinos Tornivoukas, CEO of TOR Hotel Group, ON Residence is a key project for the company and for Thessaloniki itself. “After the violent shutdown of the Mediterranée Hotel by the catastrophic earthquake in 1978, my dream has always been to be able to return to the city’s seafront with a project that would have the dynamics of the legendary hotel founded by my grandfather in 1925,” he told Hotel Designs. “When the property that housed Olympos Naoussa, which was connected to the Mediterranée due to their close proximity and similar history, went up for auction I considered this more than a business opportunity. It was also an act of gratitude from our family towards our beloved city to restore this historic restaurant, and at the same time create a hotel of high standards that would turn the page for luxury hospitality in Thessaloniki.”

With a luxurious design that connects the past with the present, the property that houses ON Residence was based on designs by renowned Greek-Jewish architect Jacques Mosse and was built in 1926. It is a typical example of Thessaloniki’s eclecticism during the interwar period, with elements reminiscent of the Belle Époque and neoclassicism. The important and delicate past of the building essentially provided the guidelines for its restoration process, completed by the architects Diversity Group and Dimitris Thomopoulos who collaborated on the project. The preservation of the façade and the decorative elements of the building were completed according to the instructions of the Ministry of Culture. The architects took extra care to not only bring to the surface all the features that made the building unique, but also to carefully combine them with contemporary elements, always guided by the aim to achieve a harmonious coexistence. The award-winning architects Nikiforidis and Cuomo took on the design of the surrounding communal areas, while the office of Nikos Fletoridis was responsible for the architectural study. The interior design was done by French decorator Fabienne Spahn, who wanted to give a renewed classic art deco style to the project, enriching it with a discreet luxury that matched the character of the building.

“On my first visit to the place, I felt that I was at the house of ‘Sleeping Beauty’,” said Spahn. “Bringing the place back to life using modern design elements but fully respecting the building’s architectural heritage was a big challenge. It reminds me of wonderful brasseries in Paris with their neoclassical charm.”

historic Olympos Naoussa Restaurant at ON Residence

Image credit: ON Residence

The important gastronomic heritage of Olympos Naoussa, and its influence on Thessaloniki’s food culture were the guiding principles for the hotel’s namesake main restaurant. The elegant interiors blend beautifully decorative elements from the past and from European bistros, juxtaposing them with a modern, urban aesthetic. In addition to the refined ambience inside the restaurant, the visitor is invited to discover a hidden evergreen courtyard, a rare oasis of relaxation in the bustling city centre of Thessaloniki. The restaurant is led by executive chef Dimitris Tassioulas, the main representative of a new and highly dynamic generation of chefs from Northern Greece, with important and award-winning projects, such as Sebrico and Thria, which Sunday Times Travel magazine awarded the title Gourmand’s Destination in 2019.

The F&B offering is completed by Tiger Loop, a cosy cocktail bar with art deco elements. Here, black, gold and deep red dominate; the space is full of movement and energy. The catalogue is curated by the award-winning bartender and entrepreneur, Achilleas Plakidas. Known for creating popular venues such as Gorilla and Mahalo, here he is called to give a cosmopolitan twist to the drink menu.

Both of these collaborations show the culture that ON Residence carefully builds, aiming to function as a connecting link between people and experiences. At the same time, it underlines the commitment of the hotel to develop these synergies that will continue to promote the culinary identity and the unique cultural character of Thessaloniki.

Main image credit: ON Residence

In Conversation With: Kalia Konstantinidou on hotel development in Greece

730 565 Pauline Brettell
In Conversation With: Kalia Konstantinidou on hotel development in Greece

After creating three unique properties in Santorini, each reflecting the spirit of its location, it was only a matter of time before KANAVA Hotels & Resorts explored wider hotel development in Greece. Pauline Brettell speaks to co-owner Kalia Konstantinidou about the group’s island-hopping development plans…

KAVANA Hotels & Resorts is meaningfully making a dent in hotel development pipeline in Greece with its collection of unique hotels, resorts and villas that are all designed and curated by owners Kalia Konstantinidou and her husband, and business partner, Antonis Eliopoulos. For the pair, it is all about creating beautiful spaces as well as memorable experiences, while introducing guests to their beloved Cycladic way of life.

The brand’s hospitality vision first emerged on the whitewashed island of Santorini, where Eliopoulos turned a rustic vineyard on his family estate into the first five-star hotel of the island in 1993, which is now the renowned Vedema, a Luxury Collection Resort.

Since then, the couple’s combined passion for hospitality motivated them to expand in 2007 towards the north of the island, with the opening of Mystique, a boutique jewel carved into the rugged Caldera cliffs. Taking a different approach in 2018, the decision was made to transform an abandoned mansion of a legendary socialite on the famous black-sand beach of Perivolos into the peaceful Istoria, a Member of Design Hotels that offers a unique residential accommodation experience.

white interior and blue sea at Kanava hotels greek island resort

Image caption: Mystique was the second hotel to open in KAVANA Hotels & Resorts’ portfolio. Image credit: KAVANA Hotels & Resorts

After making its mark on Santorini, KANAVA Hotels & Resorts stylishly island hopped to Paros, where it opened the brand’s fourth hotel, Parīlio, a Member of Design Hotels, which is a statement hotel, envisioned as a gateway to the real Cyclades. The following year, the group introduced Acron Villas, a unique collection of 24 villas, all with a minimal Cycladic aesthetic.

The visionary brand is fast establishing its position on the island, and is launching its third property on Paros in 2022, Cosme Hotel, a project that is conceived to be a celebration of the authentic Mediterranean village. The hotel aims to “carry its guests away in time”, and filling them with a sense of serenity.

Before then – and with the aim to establish where the next hotel development hotspot is in Greece – I caught up with Konstantinidou for a coffee in London’s west end. I wanted to get an idea of both the brand in general, as well as the more specific plans for the new project on Paros – and I was told that no question was off limit!

A rock on the edge of a luxury swimming pool in Paros

Image caption: Parīlio was KAVANA Hotels & Resorts’ debut hotel in Paros. | Image credit: KAVANA Hotels & Resorts

Pauline Brettell: You first opened in Santorini in 1993 with Vedema, which was the first Five Star hotel on the island. Has the vision changed over the years – is luxury in 1993 the same as luxury in 2023?

Kalia Konstantinidou: Luxury has completely changed in the last three decades, in the sense that back in the 1990’s it was solely based on material goods and offerings, while in 2020’s, especially in the post-Covid era, the meaning of ‘high-end’ or ‘jet set’ travel is not defined by the material and lifestyle, rather by the experiential and intellectual.

The world has changed enormously, and as such our vision has been blended with creating unique hotels that define a destination, with the need to connect, to engage with communities, to be mindful and to travel for a purpose. And as travel reminds us of all the things that we share, most notably our humanity and our planet, the new luxury that we embrace is also connected with sustainable travel and a more mindful approach to travel: fewer trips, longer trips, more meaningful trips. While the planet has been incredibly resilient for billions of years, it is uncanny how vulnerable we are on this earth that has a vastly growing population, and one that is so interconnected.

PB: How does KANAVA Hotels & Resorts stand out from the crowd? 

KK: The most substantial thing that makes KANAVA Hotels & Resorts unique is that we are looking into the essence of things. We strive to create a better world for tourism, one that listens to its communities better than any other industry in the world. We create projects with the essence of being sustainable, sincere, and purposeful places for us and global travellers to live in, and we insist on creating awareness for a better kind of travel!

PB: Your choice of locations seems quite personal, what made you decide to move from Santorini to Paros?

KK: Santorini is our first and eternal love. It will always have a special place in our heart as it is the island where our journey started and made our passion for hospitality evolve.

After creating three unique properties in Santorini, each with their own distinctive character, yet tied with the common elements that always inspire us, we felt that we have managed to successfully leave our footprint on the island’s hospitality scene, showcasing all angles of it, it just felt natural for us to seek a new challenge for our fourth property, and we found it almost instinctively in Paros. In 2019 we launched Parīlio, while in 2020 we introduced Acron Villas, a unique collection of twenty-four villas.

Wishing to establish our position on the island, we will be launching in May 2022, Cosme, a project that we hope will further enhance the island’s luxury hospitality scene, located right on the waterfront of Naoussa.

Secrecy Villa Interior: KAVANA Hotels & Resorts

Image caption: A paired back, whitewashed interior design scheme inside Mystique. | Image credit: KAVANA Hotels & Resorts

PB: Of all the islands in all of Greece, why were you drawn to Paros?

KK: Paros is the island where we used to spend our holidays as teenagers, but also later as a couple, and in the course of time, as a family. It is a relatively unexplored island with compelling potential, exquisite natural beauty, rich culture, and gastronomy. The younger crowds come looking for a laidback holiday among its pristine sandy beaches and lively nightlife. Surfers come for its inviting waves, while families enjoy its many sheltered bays. Visitors love the picturesque villages and bougainvillea-lined alleyways. And nature lovers come to explore the island’s wildlife and stunning geological formations.

PB: And having decided on Paros, what specifically do you look for in a new hotel location?

KK: Having decided on Paros, we were initially looking into a location that would feel welcoming and have a positive energy for us, so that we can multiply this energy through the filter of locale and make it into a magnet that would attract travellers from all around the world, into a mainly unknown location, making them want to explore it, and immerse in it.

PB: Acron villas in particular seems to be embedded in the landscape – is there a theme emerging? 

KK: For Acron Villas, we were looking into absorbing the wild landscape that embraces the project and that is strongly dominated by the Mycenean Acropolis which lies just next to it. We used a lot of local stone that comes from the cliff and followed a typical Parian architecture that is characterised by the traditional classic elements of the Cycladic architecture, like the austere landscape, the weather conditions (mainly the winds) and the need for protection from the invaders-conquerors in the old times.

All of the projects in Paros showcase some aspect of local design, from the sunlight, to traditional village dwellings, simpler monastic spaces, or the rough-hewn rocks of the surrounding cliffs.

 PB: How is this new project, Cosme Hotel, going to differ from the other properties in Paros?

KK: The new project, coming also in the post pandemic era, is a ‘celebration of life’, a unique hotel design that is a mix of experiences and rituals from all around the Mediterranean, anchoring in Paros and inviting travellers to appreciate the gifts of life, in a Greek summer setup that makes you feel carefree, happy, and full of positive energy.

Located on a sublime seafront stretch, the hotel’s private beach club overlooks the translucent Aegean Sea and in line with KAVANA Hotels & Resorts’ engagement to offer our guests holistic wellness and mindful experiences, it will have a unique outdoor wellness and fitness centre, including a stargazing area. It is a project that is predominantly anthropocentric and that aims for a sense of holistic wellbeing originating from happiness and a conscious connection with both people and also place.

Mystery Villa Bedroom: KAVANA Hotels & Resorts

Image credit: KAVANA Hotels & Resorts

PB: Sustainability is mentioned as part of your vision. How do you translate that into KAVANA Hotels  & Resorts across the board – and has working in Paros thrown up any particular issues when it comes to questions of sustainability in the local environment and community?

KK: Sustainability has always been embedded as a core value of our company’s growth and development. We consider that the sole way for our company to grow is through sustainable practices, to ensure not only that the environmental impact of our hotels is minimised, but also that we contribute to the community by supporting organisations and charities with a sustainability focus. As a result, we have planned and implemented a dedicated environmental management plan (EMP) that prioritises green self-efficacy across our operations. We deem that this plan, along with our company’s commitment to protect the environment and contribute to the societal well-being, are our fundamental duties when striving to success. We were thrilled to discover that in Paros, sustainability has been in a more mature stage than in Santorini and have already started working with local and international organisations that support the local environment and community, and we are partnering in several initiatives including water and energy usage.

PB: And finally, for visitors to Paros, what is the one ‘must-do’ thing you would recommend to see/experience?

KK: A difficult question, as Paros is a conclave of unique experiences all of them seeking to elevate the local experience, but if I need to streamline to one, then this would be strolling in the streets of Naoussa right after sunset and heading towards one of the romantic restaurants in the little port, tasting some authentic Greek food that celebrates the Greek summer. This is an experience that certainly makes you feel in place!

> Since you’re here, why not read our latest hotel review from Greece?

Main image credit: KAVANA Hotels & Resorts

luxury bedroom in neutral shades

Sneak peek inside One&Only Aesthesis

730 565 Pauline Brettell
Sneak peek inside One&Only Aesthesis

One&Only Aesthesis, the brand’s second hotel in Europe, is set to arrive on the Athenian coast and the seafront of Glyfada in June 2022. Melanie Guarda Ceccoli takes a look into the inspiration behind the resort…

luxury bedroom in neutral shades

After the announcement in May 2021 of the landing in Europe of One&Only Portonovi in ​​Montenegro, the expansion of the ultra-luxury brand, One&Only, in Europe continues with the development of One&Only Aethesis on the Athenian seafront.

In a 21-hectare seafront estate, within a six-hectare forest reserve, One&Only Aesthesis will be positioned a short distance from the capital and its most iconic sites, such as the Acropolis, the Parthenon, Syntagma Square and Cape Sounio. The resort, overlooking a 1,600-metre shoreline, will offer a statement beach club where guests and residents alike can gather and enjoy priceless views from sunrise to sunset.

Like all the brand’s properties, the hotel will guarantee maximum privacy, offering most of the accommodation in independent villas, all with private pools, perfect for couples or families. Among the accommodation solutions available, the iconic Villa One has set new standards in terms of exclusivity.

One&Only Aesthesis embodies the glamour of the Aegean, with 127 guestrooms, breathtaking suites, and private villas – all designed to frame the natural beauty of the Grecian coastline. The architecture pays homage to mid-century design with high ceilings, woven leather, muted tones, and accent patterns that embody the inherent beauty of a cosmopolitan Riviera.

Following the global partnership with Chenot, a leader in health and wellness, the resort will also host a Chenot Spa that will offer customised programs and cutting-edge treatments, scientifically designed to improve guests’ vitality and optimal health throughout the hotel. A state-of-the-art fitness centre, with both indoor and outdoor spaces, will complete the offer.

The news comes after Kerzner International Holdings Limited, the owner of the ultra-luxury One&Only Resorts and iconic Atlantis Resort & Residences brands worldwide, entered into a resort management agreement with Grivalia Hospitality S.A. “Kerzner International is very excited to be adding Athens to our European footprint,” commented Philippe Zuber, CEO, Kerzner International. “This exclusive beachfront location, just outside of the city centre of Athens is incredible; the perfect destination to begin, or end, any Greek adventure through the ultra-luxury experience of One&Only. We will reimagine the golden era of Athens, a celebration through life and energy that is true to our brand promise. We are executing our strategic growth and development of the One&Only brand globally, and excited to add another One&Only experience in Greece. Our partners, Grivalia, are leaders in Greek real estate investment and are committed to honouring the location and providing a legacy for the future.”

hotel dining room decorated in sage and cream palette

Image credit: One&Only Aesthesis

The resort is at the crossroads of Greek history and culture, from the Acropolis and Parthenon to Syntagma Square and Cape Sounio on the glamorous Athenian Riviera, with its exclusive beachfront of Glyfada. The resort is just moments away from the vibrant metropolis, yet is surrounded by endless blues and glistening islands dotting the horizon. A true paradise embodying Grecian heritage and authentic Athenian allure, the resort will be the perfect sanctuary, honouring the cosmopolitan sophistication of the ’60s and ’70s.

Inspired by the azure waters and the incredible natural surroundings, One&Only Aethesis aims to provide a modern Greek elegance, while at the same time looking to the past and  showcasing powerful elements dominant in Greek mythology like fire and water, carved from a palette of natural stone and timber. As with all One&Only properties, the resort will offer innovative programmes for families with children, whilst carefully preserving space for adults only as well.

Along with the emphasis on design and luxury, significant attention will be paid to the culinary proposal to give guests an immersive Greek experience through all the senses.

“Grivalia Hospitality is excited to revive a landmark site along the Athenian Riviera and join forces with Kerzner International for One&Only, a distinguished global leader in ultra-luxury hospitality,” commented George Chryssikos, Founder and Chairman, Grivalia Hospitality. “One&Only Aesthesis will be on one of Athens’s most iconic and cosmopolitan waterfront sites, originally designed by prominent Greek architects. From its development in the mid-1950s, the bungalows, the beach, and the club hosted both the local and international jet set. Upon completion, this contemporary hybrid city resort will become the unique high-end destination in the Mediterranean all year round.”

One&Only was created exclusively for the ultra-luxury market and conceived as a hallmark of excellence. With the continued evolution of the One&Only portfolio, this new resort will complement the existing award-winning resort collection, set in some of the most beautiful locations in the world.

> Since you are here, why not read about the One&Only One Za’abeel in Dubai.

Main image credit: One&Only Aesthesis

Milano by Robert Holden

In Conversation With: The man who designed the ‘most stylish’ hotel in Crete

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
In Conversation With: The man who designed the ‘most stylish’ hotel in Crete

Ahead of the official opening of CAYO Exclusive Resort and Spa – a new property that is known locally as the most stylish hotel in Crete – we caught up with the projects designer, Gian Paolo Venier to discuss design detail and decor must-haves…

Milano by Robert Holden

In summer last year, we gave our readers the first sneak peek inside CAYO Exclusive Resort and Spa.

Taking luxury, gastronomy and design to a new level on the island, the property, which is just a stone’s throw from sought-after Elounda, the hotel will open later this year with a mind-body balancing spa, four gastronomic restaurants, stylish rooms, suites and villas with private plunge pools and unrivalled vistas of Spinalonga Island.

Image of hotel surrounding natural landscape of Crete

Image credit: CAYO

Drawing from a calming and neutral palette, interior designer Gian Paolo 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.

To understand more about the design narrative, we caught up with the designer himself.

Hotel Design: What were your first thoughts when you were presented with the concept of CAYO?

Gian Paolo Venier: I was excited. The location is astonishing, and the brief I was presented with was both stimulating and challenging – not only was it a huge project, almost all the rooms are different. The architecture balanced perfectly with the landscape following a simple, timeless approach. I saw the project as a blank canvas, and couldn’t wait to create its own unique personality.

Image credit: CAYO

The cherry on top of the cake for me was Cayo’s location, my beloved country of Greece, where I have spent a lot of time over the years and become increasingly familiar with its islands. I am in love with the people, lifestyle, landscape, colours… and Meltemi (the Greek wind)! It is one of the places I feel happiest and truly at home. The project began in Paris, I met with the owners for lunch, and they introduced me to CAYO. We clicked right from the offset and soon become friends, then accomplices.

image of wicker light shades in contemporary restaurant in the CAYO hotel in Crete

Image credit: CAYO

HD: CAYO’s surroundings clearly play a big part in the property’s design. Can you tell us more about the process of creating hotel interiors that reflect the natural surroundings?

GPV: With all of my projects I take lots of inspiration from the destination and try to reflect it as much as possible through my design. I enjoy finding parallels between the land and the culture, and in Cayo’s case, the landscape is so prevalent that it would be impossible not to centre the design on the property’s beautiful surroundings. For the facade of the building, we created a colour palette that complimented the surroundings. We wanted to ensure CAYO blended into the landscape and create a soft transition from nature to architecture. We incorporated pebbles within the design, as they’re traditionally used in Greece for flooring and opted to use them inside playing around with the dimensions.

Image from terrace overviewing the sea and private pool in Crete

Image credit: CAYO

For the guestrooms, the approach was completely different. All the rooms boast a view of the sea and the islet of Spinalonga, so during the summer months the rooms will be filled with light, with this in mind we created a colour palette that supported the Cretan sun to prevent any harsh contrasts. This end result features lots of pastel colours that blend together whilst showcasing the view.

HD: What’s your favourite design element of CAYO?

GPV: It’s so hard to choose as nearly all elements of the property, from the furniture to light fittings, were custom-made during this project. I love the three-floor chandelier in the main staircase, made of bamboo cages and hundreds of hammered aluminium butterflies. It embodies freedom and is a subtle reminder to the guest to “feel free!”. Another highlight is

the handcrafted pottery we installed in the lobby. The pots were sourced from local potters and the idea was to spark people’s curiosity and perhaps initiate a visit to the local workshop where the pots are still produced today by hand – ultimately telling a story through design.

HD: One of CAYO’s USPs is that each suite/room boasts a view of the ocean. Was it important for you to emphasise this through your design?

GPV: This was compulsory! It made my job so much easier as I already had the focal point, it was just a case of showcasing this through the design. The view from Cayo is so unique and I didn’t want to take away from this by making the design too loud. I like to think
of Cayo’s design as ‘whispered’ it embraces the natural surroundings instead of forcing itself upon them. Being blessed with the view is like having a Monet painting in each room – you simply design around it! The ambience has already been created; you just need to follow.

A modern and stylish guestroom inside CAYO Exclusive Resort and Spa

Image credit: CAYO Exclusive Resort and Spa

HD: Natural colours or bright and bold?

GPV: My projects always result in a balance of freshness and joy through the use of colours. The mix of colours depends on the context, the project, the relevance, and the idea that guides the concept. I don’t tend to apply one rule to all of my clients and sometimes I’m surprised by the palettes I create, and I don’t think I’d be a good designer if I wasn’t!

HD: How should we find inspiration when it comes to design? What inspires you?

GPV: When you do this job with passion, you never stop analysing, observing, and cataloguing everything you see. It is an exercise that becomes second nature, and travelling is one of the greatest tools to seek inspiration. It’s the part of my job that brings me the most joy. To discover, meet, investigate, and then return, translate, and redesign. This is an infinite exercise that I find incredibly beneficial.

HD: Do you have any advice for budding home designers?

GPV: During the first lesson at the university, my design professor told us: “You have to experience everything. You cannot design anything if you don’t know and have no experience.” We were very young, and perhaps we did not understand what it meant to experience different contrasts – be that sleeping in a luxury hotel and then trying a hostel or eating in a Michelin- starred restaurant and then a Tavern. Through analysing and acknowledging we can truly understand the meaning of experiences. My professor’s words have always guided me and still ring true today.

A window from guestroom into a pool

Image credit: CAYO

HD: When it comes to décor, what one item should we all have?

GPV: In 1908, Adolf Loos wrote in his book “Ornament and Crime” that he told his clients not to redesign their new house completely. Instead, he advised them to bring at least three family objects. These three “errors”, as he referred to them, gave the project a touch of humanity and history. I think this means that a “must-have” item must be something personal, which helps define our identity. It doesn’t matter what it is. The important thing is that it represents us or tells something about our history and or identity.

Main image credit: Robert Holden

Suite inside The Modernist in Athens

The Modernist Athens – designed for the urban explorer

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
The Modernist Athens – designed for the urban explorer

With a statement as grand as that headline, it was only ever a matter of time before Hotel Designs took a sneaky peek inside the latest boutique beauty to arrive in Athens: The Modernist. Sheltering a design that is said to inspire curiosity, we find out how this new 38-key hotel is settling in to its city surroundings…

Suite inside The Modernist in Athens

For many design enthusiasts, including myself, Athens is the etherial Goddess of boutique hotels – and therefore any brand entering this built-up authentic metropolis should do so with caution. In a destination where culture actually rises from the earth – I’m talking about the acropolis, of course – any hotel planning to open without a personality will be exposed and swallowed up by the noise of disobedience that echoes through cobbled streets.

Cue the opening of The Modernist, a 38-key gem that is perched aptly on a street corner. It opens with the aim to authentically connect its guests to the real Athens; to entice its guests to “explore its soul through culture and meaningful connections with the locals.”

The boutique hotel stands as the sister property to the award-winning Modernist Thessaloniki and marks a second chapter in the expanding hospitality brand created by entrepreneur Kostis Karatzas.

Located in the former Canadian embassy in Kolonaki, this new project maintains the same playful juxtaposition of art deco elements, mid-century detailing and Danish design found in its companion Thessaloniki location. Its high-quality offerings are grounded by the interior and exterior’s cool, well-honed character. The result is a relaxed, elegant environment that makes guests feel at home from the moment they set foot in the lobby.

“The Modernist is about contemporary hospitality that inspires curiosity and authentic experiences,” Karatzas says. “Ethics and aesthetics course through everything we do, as an invisible thread that connects us with the world. Following the opening of our first property in Thessaloniki two years ago, Athens was a natural next step for us. And this is only the beginning for our brand.”

Image of the staircase inside The Modernist Athens

Image credit: The Modernist

The building itself commingles the minimalism of post-war 1950s architecture with the nowness of sleek yet subtle contemporary spaces. With clean, symmetrical lines that stay true to the brand’s design philosophy, the exterior of The Modernist Athens is a sight to behold amid the vibrant cityscape.

Inside, guests are greeted by sharp contrasts in colour and shape, which anchor them back in the present day. The raw assertiveness of the marble, plaster, bronze and black glass within the lobby perfectly juxtaposes the softer, more refined nature of the oak wood floors, leather headboards and artful midcentury-inspired furnishings found inside the rooms.

An image showing exposed wardrobe and work area inside suite - The Modernist in Athens

Image credit: The Modernist

“We want its guests to be able to move and thrive in this space.” – Konstantinos Theodoridis and Eleni Papaevangelou, Co-Founders of FORMrelated.

Collaborating architects FORMrelated made use of an eclectic mix of local and international interior design brands, while employing custom builds such as embossed veneer panels and bronze details to articulate the second, equally cool addition to the Modernist name.

“We see The Modernist Athens becoming a compelling value proposition not just in living but in the experience industry as well,” explains Konstantinos Theodoridis and Eleni Papaevangelou, the studio’s co-founders. “We want its guests to be able to move and thrive in this space, in this small and intimate unit that manages to encapsulate contemporary luxuries in such an understated way.”

The 38 rooms are spread across six floors. Designed to be modern living spaces, each guestroom offers an uncomplicated aesthetic that is elevated by custom lighting and made-to-measure furniture, ensuring elegance across the board. Meanwhile, a meaningful sizing nomenclature (S, M, L, XL) makes it easy for guests to select the option that best fits their individual needs.

Image of a guestroom with contemporary interiors inside The Modernist in Athens

Image credit: The Modernist

Elsewhere, the lobby maintains an aura of refinement thanks to its midcentury vibe, with dark tones and bronze details marrying minimalism with opulence. At the same time, true to the brand’s overall intuitive approach to spatial planning, it acts as the hotel’s beating heart, orienting and guiding its patrons organically between different floors and services.

On the ground floor, the breakfast buffet transforms into an all-day cafe bar, ideal for relaxation. Plywood and marble blend together to create a warm atmosphere, while minimalist shelves are filled with a refined selection of modern and limited edition books.

The rooftop garden, which can double up as an open cinema, features verdant greens and frames breath-taking views over Athens and the Acropolis, which serves as the jewel in the crown of this urban oasis.

Image of rooftop garden overlooking Athens

Image credit: The Modernist

The Modernist project began in downtown Thessaloniki as the perfect hub for constant travellers. While ideating its Athenian counterpart, the main challenge lay in staying true to the spirit of the brand, and at the same time expressing the individual spirit of each city.

A respect for the existing exterior architecture has remained one of the brand’s common denominators, as has the propensity towards using natural, reusable materials in the interiors.

Still, by far the most important element of both Modernist hotels is the symbiotic relationship they maintain with their respective creative communities.

Given Athens’ vast cultural heritage, the hotel has a plethora of options to connect its guests to locals through highly curated experiences. The introduction to a refined couleur locale starts from inside the hotel, where various artists have put their stamp on everything, from ceramics and the artwork on walls to tailor-made music playlists, and even a vinyl collection that’s in the works. The hotel also offers itself as an events epicentre, with its rooftop garden doubling as an open cinema and its ground floor as a space for workshops and talks by guest artists.

Aiming to inspire curiosity and meaningful connections with the city’s creatives, The Modernist Athens is an exciting new chapter not only for the brand which celebrates metropolitanism in a collected, understated way but also for the hospitality scene in Athens, which has taken a battering this year due to the on-going Covid-19 crisis.

Main image credit: The Modernist

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

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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

IN PICTURES: inside Bellonias Villas, Santorini

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
IN PICTURES: inside Bellonias Villas, Santorini

With Greece becoming a popular go-to destination post-lockdown, Hotel Designs explores the interior design story of Bellonias Villas in Santorini, created by Greek firms K Studio and Interni by Moda Bagno…

Natural, simple elegance is at the heart of Bellonias Villas, which is made up of 26 beach suites scattered alongside the black volcanic Kamari beach, on the east coast of the island of Santorini overlooking the mountain of ancient Thira.

This boutique hotel is also home to Elia Restaurant, a pool-side cocktail bar, and its own private stretch of beach, making it the ideal choice for couples and families who seek stylish, unpretentious luxury and beachside relaxation in a peaceful part of Santorini.

This is a contemporary project that conveys the passion and creativity of the local owners, in combination with the innovative & fresh thinking of up-and-coming Greek architects & artists. The exterior bar, pool area, restaurant and reception were designed by Athens-based design gurus K Studio. Interiors are by Greek company Interni by ModaBagno. Drawing inspiration from the unique landscape of Santorini, the designed environment is composed of natural materials such as wood and stone, with a contemporary aesthetic.  

Stylish white interior suite overlooking the sea

Image credit: Bellonias Villas

The hotel’s beach suites reflect this philosophy of modern elegance paired with the traditional beauty of simplicity. Pressed cement floors and built-in beds and sofas are complemented by selected designer pieces and artistic details adding flashes of colour to a largely monochrome backdrop. This fusion of traditional Cycladic elements with a modern design concept creates a sophisticated environment with a warm, natural feel. 

The 26 suites come in a variety of shapes and sizes including: 

The honeymoon suite

Image credit: Bellonias Villas

Located on the upper level of the hotel, framing direct sea views from its balcony and its private outdoor hot tub is The Honeymoon Suite. An indoor staircase separates the upper level bedroom from the lower level, which features a spacious bathroom, a fully equipped kitchenette and a living area for lounging. 

Superior Sea View Suite

Image credit: Bellonias Villas

These suites offer direct sea views from a furnished balcony or terrace, and sleep two adults in an airy open plan space, with double bed, a fully equipped kitchenette and bathroom. Sea View Suites are located either on the upper level or on the ground floor. 

Apartment Suite

Image credit: Bellonias Villas

Apartment suites, expected to be in popular demand post-pandemic, have a furnished garden view terrace or balcony, and come in a variety of sizes, comfortably accommodating up to five people – perfect for families. There is one bedroom, plus a separate living space that can become a second sleeping area if required. A fully equipped kitchenette with dining area and bathroom complete the apartment.

Studio Suite

Small but perfectly formed, the Studio Suites sleep two adults in a double or twin beds, with furnished garden view balcony or terrace, fully equipped kitchenette and bathroom. 

Elia Restaurant

Image credit: Bellonias Villas

With an inspiring open air setting, and delicious food by award-winning Chef Christos Papageorgiou, Elia is one of the finest dining options in Santorini. Set between the seafront of Kamari beach and the hotel’s chic pool area, the restaurant has a stylish yet unpretentious ambiance and is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. 

Within the hotel, a wellness area includes whirlpool tub, gym, steam, sauna and treatment room is available for guests to book on request. 

A note from the editor: If the industry has learned anything during its forced hibernation over the last few months, it’s that simplicity and authenticity is going to be a significant demand for consumers checking into the post-pandemic world. Stripping interiors to reveal a minimalist design, exposing the architecture of a building, and injecting personality into private and public areas with interesting lighting concepts, and stylish art and the use of meaningful colour – much like what Bellonias Villas does so effortlessly – is going to be 

Main image credit: Bellonias Villas

Mitsis Hotels lifts the lid on redesign story behind Greek gem

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Mitsis Hotels lifts the lid on redesign story behind Greek gem

Architecture and design firm WATG completed the renovation and redesign of Mitsis Summer Palace on the Greek island of Kos… 

Uniquely positioned on an elevated site above a Blue Flag-awarded beach, the newly renovated Mitsis Summer Palace boasts 360-degree views across the Aegean Sea towards Nissiros Island and the Bay of Kardamena, and offers a stunning direct line of sight all the way to the coast of Turkey. Tasked with the evolutionary renovations was the multidisciplined design firm WATG.

Showcasing the full suite of of the firm’s services, the project – which included upgrades to thesite’s restaurant and pool amenities – incorporated strategy, planning, architecture, landscape architecture and Wimberly Interiors to achieve a fully integrated, considered space that celebrates the stunning surroundings while aligning perfectly with Mitsis Hotels’ commitment to creating one-of-a-kind travel experiences.

“The hillside situation of the hotel, with expansive views across the Aegean, was theinspiration for creating a space which seamlessly connects the guest with the horizon,” said Georgina Langridge of WATG’s London Landscape Architecture team who was awarded a Hotel Designs’ 30 Under 30 earlier this year. “From a design perspective, it was all about connecting visitors with the surrounding sea and celebrating the Kos sunset. In contrast to other pools on the island, we made a bold move with the colour palette and opted for a dark tile – something that is quite unique to the property, which has bold features throughout including teal sun lounges and coralaccents in the restaurant.”

On working with Mitsis Hotels, WATG London Associate Vice President and Architect Nick Carrier commented: “WATG is thrilled to have an ongoing and exciting relationship with a company like Mitsis Hotels. We’re grateful to them for placing trust in us to make bolddecisions and contribute to their vision of creating unique, customer-centric spaces.”

Mitsis Summer Palace reopened in April 2019 following the highly successful renovation and reopening of Mitsis Norida Beach in April 2018, which featured five new pools, a pool bar, three restaurants and a beach bar – also a WATG multidisciplinary design project.

Main image credit: Mitsis Hotels

Luce interiors with rustic villa furniture

Andronis Arcadia opens in Santorini

730 565 Hamish Kilburn
Andronis Arcadia opens in Santorini

Offering “unrivalled luxury”, earthly Andronis Arcadia shelters 53 design-led pool suites on Santorini, Greece, all with striking vistas towards the Aegean Sea and the island’s unforgettable sunsets…

Andronis Arcadia is the latest addition to the Andronis Exclusive family of five-star hotels and villas. The hotel, which is named after the mythical home of Greek God Pan, is situated on the fringes of Oia, a place of natural harmony and pastoral enchantment.

Luce interiors with rustic villa furniture

Andronis Arcadia’s rustic and earthly-luxe interiors bring elements of nature indoors, from the succulents and plants, to local wood and materials. The Greek forged cement coating technique used throughout, has existed for centuries and creates a minimalistic look. Around 85 – 90 per cent of the furniture is handmade locally and has been constructed inside the hotel. The exterior heavily uses stones, drawing on the colours and textures of the volcano and its lava.

Close up of woven chair and a glass of white wine

Image credit: Carley Rudd Photography

The hotel has 53 suites of six categories including Eden Villa, the largest villa on the island complete with six bedrooms over three floors, plus its own spa, fitness centre, private chef and two pools. All suites have sunset and sea views plus a plunge pool, and guests additionally have access to the 450m2 infinity pool surrounded by cabanas. The suite interiors have geometrical-style design alongside square recesses on the walls, and natural fabrics throughout including linen to give the ultimate sense of light and space.

Evexia Spa is Andronis Arcadia’s Spa & Wellness Centre, developed in partnership with founder of luxury skincare brand ila, Denise Leicester, and Dr Zulia Frost, who pioneered the non-invasive hair profiling test. The largest spa on Santorini, Evexia Spa has five treatment rooms with the option for in-suite treatments.

Three restaurants and two bars occupy the space. Signature restaurant Opson spearheaded by Stefanos Kolimadis showcases dishes inspired by the tastes and ingredients of classical Greece through a several course tasting menu developed in consultation with a classical scholar. Contemporary cuisine and flavours of an ancient time are fused to bring together the best Greek food today with dishes known and loved by legendary forefathers including Aristotle, Plato and Omiros. Althea Restaurant features dazzling Mediterranean seafood as well as local dishes with ingredients grown in the Andronis gardens. Chef showcases the best flavours and produce of the Cycladic islands and wider Mediterranean. Oishii Sushi Bar uses the freshest ingredients fused with traditional Japanese techniques, serving exceptionally well presented and seasonally changing dishes.

View from the hotel terrace withColours of blue, orange, red and yellow in the sunset

Image credit: Andronis Arcadia

The sunset terrace, Senses Cocktail Bar, is a welcome return for island friends. Chic and convivial, it’s designed to be a premium Instagrammable setting. The hotel, which opens as the seventh property within the Andronis Exclusive portfolio, is said to be a game-changer on the island for style, gastronomy and understated luxury.

FIRST LOOK: The Wild Hotel arrives in Mykonos

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FIRST LOOK: The Wild Hotel arrives in Mykonos

The Wild Hotel in Kalafati Beach, designed in collaboration with Alexandros & Filippos Varveris and Sofia & Matina Karavas, will open in Mykonos in May 2019… 

Located on a picturesque cliffside over Kalafati Beach, The Wild Hotel, owned by Interni, will offer a design-led retreat, featuring 40 suites and villas inspired by the colours and lines of traditional Grecian architecture.

Set in a natural amphitheatre, the hotel is home to an infinity pool with views across the Aegean Sea, a private beach for residents and a restaurant – The Taverna – serving classic dishes from the Cycladic Islands. The Wild Hotel is a collaboration of design between Alexandros & Filippos Varveris and Sofia & Matina Karavas, who are both co-owners and architects of the project.

The Wild Hotel offers an unparalleled location on the island of Mykonos; situated on a tip of the island which remains raw and pure, the hotel is situated next to a tiny beach-front village once inhabited by the bravest fishermen of Mykonos, referred to as ‘the wild ones’ by locals. The village is now a tranquil, picturesque port that imbues the area with a rich Cycladic history.

Raw luxury pool

Image credit: The Wild Hotel/Yiorgos Kordakis

Spring 2019 will also see the launch of Ftelia Beach Club, the sister of The Wild Hotel, located on the opposite side of Mykonos Island in the much-loved Ftelia Bay. Ftelia Beach Club will showcase the designs of up-and-coming Italian architect Fabricio Casiraghi. The club’s aesthetic was inspired by the famous resorts of the 60s and 70s in Southern France and coastal Italy, seamlessly blending Mykonos’ buzzy cosmopolitan vibe with the natural beachfront surroundings. Ftelia Beach Club will offer a Mediterranean menu with an emphasis on local produce.

Image credit: The Wild Hotel/Yiorgos Kordakis

“We are excited to announce the opening of The Wild Hotel and Ftelia Beach Club on the island of Mykonos and we are confident that both properties will bring something new and dynamic to the island,” said Alexandros Varveris, Owner and founder of Interni Group. “We have already established our brand with Interni Restaurant, and are excited to watch Interni grow on the beautiful island of Mykonos.”

With these two new properties, The Wild Hotel and Ftelia Beach Club, Interni Group aim to merge the traditions of the island with new cosmopolitan thinking to offer something fresh and different for Mykonos.

Main image credit: Yiorgos Kordakis

Elivi Skiathos to unveil new rooms and suites

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Elivi Skiathos to unveil new rooms and suites

Elivi Skiathos has announced that 56 Grace Rooms and Suites, three new restaurants, and a Kid’s Club will be added to the hotel in time for season opening on April 26, 2019…

Opened for the first time last year in June, the father-and-daughter-run luxury hotel is building on the success of its first season by expanding its accommodation offerings.

Elivi Skiathos is comprised of three separate areas, ELIVI Xenia Hotel in the main area of the resort, ELIVI Nest Rooms, Villas and Suites elegantly spread among olive groves, and, as of 2019, 67 secluded ELIVI Grace Rooms & Suites set on the beach.

The Grace area of the hotel will grow from 11 rooms to 67. The elegant, new Double Supreme Deluxe Rooms and Junior Suites will boast either long balconies, hot tubs or private plunge pools.

The hotel, which is perched on a hilltop on the Pounta Peninsula overlooking the Aegean Sea, was developed in collaboration between the family and Vivi Nathanailidi. The property is surrounded by an area of natural beauty beside a wildlife refuge, forest and lagoon – and roaming black swans – which became a large reference in the interior design as well as the branding of the hotel.

“A new beach bar will also take its bar offering up to seven.”

ELIVI Skiathos will also grow its food offering to five restaurants: fine-dining restaurant Leda & The Swan; Hagoromo Sushi Bar and Asian restaurant; the cosy Nest Greek Fish Restaurant serving traditional, fresh Greek seafood and meze; Grace Restaurant serving Mediterranean and Italian cuisine; Nest Breakfast Restaurant reserved exclusive for guests of the Nest area of the hotel. A new beach bar will also take its bar offering up to seven.

With families being a key market for Elivi Skiathos, the hotel is also pleased to introduce a Kid’s Club for 2019 with more details coming soon.

Two outdoor swimming pools on either side of resort stretch into the glistening Aegean Sea below and four of the most picturesque white-sand beaches on Skiathos are all within walking distance, offering mattress thick sunbeds and beach waiter service.

Main image credit: Elivi Skiathos

Four seasons opens its first Greece hotel

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Long a favoured playground of Athenians and international celebrities, the Astir Palace Hotel is now being transformed into the first Four Seasons experience in Greece. Following a significant renovation and reinvention, a new generation of travellers is poised to fall in love with this very special seaside enclave…

Four Seasons Astir Palace Hotel AthensJust minutes from the historic city centre of Athens stands a pine-clad peninsula jutting into the Aegean Sea. Now home to the new Four Seasons Astir Palace Hotel confirmed to open March 29, 2019.

Guests will have a choice of rooms that include: Mid-century modern Nafsika building with azure sea views, laidback relaxation in the Bauhaus-esque Arion and the ultimate in beachside luxury with 61 renovated Bungalows nestled among the trees at the water’s edge.

Four Seasons Astir Palace Hotel AthensSam Ioannidis, the Hotel’s General Manager, said: “Nowhere in the world do ancient culture and modern lifestyle come together so beautifully than in Greece.

“With our close proximity to the city – just 30 minutes from both the Acropolis and the airport – the ideal Greek vacation has never been more accessible. Whether taking a quick break or staying a few weeks to take in all the sights and immerse yourself in the glamour and fun of the Athenian Riviera.”

Birds eye view of the pool

Inside Elivi Skiathos, Greece’s new take on luxury design

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Luxury design hotel Elivi Skiathos is the result of a father-and-daughter duo set on the beautiful Greek Island and Skiathos…

Earlier this year, we took a sneak peak into what the next luxury hotel in Greece was going to look like and how it would fit in to the laid-back luxury scene. Well, Elivi Skiathos is now open and Hotel Designs popped its head through the door to see if the design vision became a reality.

The exterior marries together stone, concrete and dark wooden balconies, which subtly blend into the surroundings that have almost a beach-like vibe

Perched on a hilltop on the Pounta Peninsula overlooking the Aegean Sea, the 104-key hotel was developed by father and daughter Elias and Vivi Nathanailidi. The property is surrounded by an area of natural beauty beside a wildlife refuge, forest and lagoon – and roaming black swans – which became a large reference in the interior design as well as the branding of the hotel.

Image credit: Presidential suite pool

Designed by Athens-based Antonis and Vangelis Stylanidis from Stylanidis Architects, the hotel has been created around the stunning island setting. The exterior marries together stone, concrete and dark wooden balconies, which subtly blend into the surroundings that have almost a beach-like vibe. The result is the most high-end five-star hotel on the island, which shelters well-appointed, modern guestrooms, suites and villas with private pools, an ultra-high-end four-bedroom villa, beach service, three restaurants, a spa, gym, tennis court and more.

The guestrooms in Elivi Skiathos have been designed to be simple, airy and sophisticated. Large floor-to-ceiling windows utilise the natural light that floods in throughout the day, while black-and-white contemporary artwork pieces of the wild black swans inject energy and a sense of place into each room.

Despite all rooms adorning a luxe atmosphere, the Swan Villa is by far the most impressive hotel villa on the island. The two-floor, seafront villa accommodates up to eight adults in four en-suite rooms and is equipped with a kitchen, dining area, living room and a spacious private pool.

Swan Villa

Image caption: The Swan Villa

Making the most of the sun-drenched location, the resort has two main outdoor pools and numerous private pools, are of which all cleaned by an electrolysis system, omitting the use of chlorine.

Nest Bar and resaurant

Image caption: Nest bar and Restaurant

The Nest Pool restaurant, also reflecting a strong island look and feel, is designed to capture a laid-back luxury vibe, with soft woods being used in the bar, the seating and even in the light shades that cover lights on the end of thick ropes.

Elsewhere, the ELIVI SPA offers three ELEMIS treatment rooms, a hairdressing salon, manicure and pedicure stations, an indoor pool, Oriental Bath (Hammam) and sauna. An indoor and outdoor gym, tennis court, basketball court and football pitch are also available.

Overall, the father-and-daughter team seem to have pulled off a miracle, which is to drastically improve laid-back luxury in the Greece isles without eliminating the natural splendour of the simple stunning landscape.

Hyatt Hotels expands to Greece with new hotel opening

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Hyatt Hotels Corporation has revealed that a Hyatt affiliate has joined forces with Henderson Park and Hines to develop the first Grand Hyatt Hotel in Greece.

Set to boast 310 rooms, the Grand Hyatt Athens is scheduled to open during Q3 2018 and will be managed by Kokari Limited.

Centrally located on Syngrou Avenue in Athens’ Koukaki district, the hotel will be designed to reflect its Greek culture with dramatic architecture and an innovative design.

Meanwhile, a rooftop bar, restaurant and outdoor swimming pool with a view of the Acropolis will keep guests entertained during their stay.

“We are thrilled to announce plans for the first Hyatt property in Athens with Henderson Park, Hines and Kokari,” said Takuya Aoyama, VP of development for Eastern Europe, Russia and CIS at Hyatt.

“We have long sought to bring the Grand Hyatt brand’s celebratory luxury to the Greek capital. This deal represents a significant milestone in Southeast Europe, an important growth market for Hyatt with recent Hyatt development announcements in Turkey and Bulgaria.”

With its premium offerings and central location, Grand Hyatt Athens will appeal to business and leisure travellers.

Plus, more than 11,600 sq ft of meeting space will also be included on site, as well as a spa and fitness centre.

Paul Gomopoulos, MD of Hines Greece, added: “We are delighted to work with Hyatt on this Grand Hyatt hotel, a global brand with the caliber of offerings we need for this market. We look forward to delivering an experience in Athens worthy of celebration.”

The new hotel, which us undergoing a renovation, will join its sister property Hyatt Regency Thessaloniki, making it the second Hyatt hotel to be built in Greece.

Elivi Skiathos to open June 2018

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Family-owned five-star hotel will offering private pools, a sea-facing four-bedroom villa, spa and panoramic views.

The Elivi Skiathos Hotel, owned and developed by father and daughter team Elias and Vivi Nathanailidi, will open on June 1st, marking the first hospitality venture by Elivi Hotels.

The 213,000m² hotel is surrounded by a wildlife refuge and offers direct access to four beaches in Skiathos: Koukounaries, Ambelakia, Banana and Little Banana Beach.

Elivi Skiathos will feature what are described as modern spacious rooms and suites only a few steps away from the shore, with private pools and courtyards integrated into the area’s existing natural features and walking paths bordered by forests of olive and pine trees.

Comprised of three separate areas, guests can choose from the Elivi Xenia Hotel on the hilltop of Pounta Peninsula with 32 rooms, the 11 secluded Elivi Grace Suites set on the beach, or the 61 Elivi Nest Rooms, Villas & Suites amongst pine trees and olive groves.

All three areas will feature elegantly appointed rooms, with an emphasis on sophisticated modern design and exceptional service.

Swan Villa & Elivi Spa

The Elivi Nest Rooms, Villas & Suites will be home to the Swan Villa – Spanning across two floors and measuring 200m², the seafront villa accommodates up to eight adults featuring four en-suite rooms, a kitchen, dining area, living room and a private pool.

The Elivi Spa will offer three treatment rooms powered by Elemis, a hairdressing salon, manicure and pedicure stations, an indoor pool, Oriental Bath (Hammam), Sauna, and Elemis products to purchase. The hotel will also house an indoor and outdoor gym, tennis court, basketball court and football pitch.

There will also be an outdoor pool located on the hilltop overlooking Ambelakia Beach and the Aegean Sea, as well as a large outdoor 200m² swimming pool situated by the Elivi Nest Rooms. All the pools are cleaned by an electrolysis system, so no chlorine.

Elivi Skiathos will house a total of three restaurants and six bars including three beach bars. Each will serve their own twist on Greek food using locally sourced ingredients and exceptional cuisine to satisfy any palate.

Myconian Collection Completes the Renovation of Myconian Imperial and Royal Myconian Resorts

Myconian Collection completes renovation of Imperial and Royal resorts

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Myconian Collection is proud to announce the completion of renovations to Myconian Imperial Resort and Royal Myconian Resort on the island of Mykonos, Greece. Totally transformed, the resorts exude magnificent Greek architecture and sophisticated design, as well as infinite sweeping views across the Aegean Sea.

Both resorts are proud members of The Leading Hotels of the World and continue to attain the Myconian Collection principles, renowned for their unparalleled level of authentic luxury and traditional hospitality.

The renovation included the thorough redesign and upgrade of all rooms and public places in both resorts. Together, the newly re-imagined resorts offer 203 stylish rooms, 20 magnificent luxury suites, seven gourmet restaurants with bars, outdoor pools, fitness rooms, as well as spa and wellness centres. In addition, there are numerous boutiques available which offer both modern Greek and international designer wear, and eight multi-functional halls with unsurpassed sea views equipped with the latest conference support technologies.

Overlooking the idyllic Elia Beach, the extraordinary surrounding scenery of Myconian Imperial and Royal Myconian provides the perfect ambiance for high-end events in Mykonos. With 15 outstanding and authentic venues to choose from, the resorts are equipped for any event regardless of size or complexity. From tailored corporate meetings and conferences, to unique multimillion euro wedding productions, christenings or family reunions. With this impressive range of conferencing and banqueting facilities, Myconian Imperial and Royal Myconian have acquired a reputation of producing extraordinary events.

Myconian Imperial Resort
Following the renovations, the urban fantasy of travel becomes a reality at Imperial Resort, a metropolitan spot above the sea where luxury serves the Cycladic aesthetics of simplicity and moderation. Greek topography is underlined through the blending of the stone with the white wood, the colour contrasts and the decorative elements that function as global cultural bridges. Showcasing quirky design details, a majestic white profile and a variety of aesthetics, guests will experience the timeless Greek summer at its best.

Royal Myconian Resort
At the Royal Resort, the traditional Cycladic atmosphere crosses over to today. The resort offers a sculptured landscape and a contemporary aesthetic recreation of the traditional alleys of Mykonos. Every space, room and suite becomes a window to the Aegean Sea, a pathway to cosmopolitan Hellenism. The white colour coated walls blend with the brine-eroded wood and the colour analysis of the Greek summer, the fabrics and the tapestries. The resort conveys the essence of Cycladic nature and hospitality and draws into the natural beauty and luxurious standards offered by the island.



Gennadi Grand Resort

New design-led hotel transforming Rhodes – Gennadi Grand Resort

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A new resort set on the coast overlooking the azure waters of the Aegean, Gennadi Grand Resort opens in May 2018 and will set a new standard for five-star hospitality in the Greek islands.

Part of Lindos Hotel Group, this eco-friendly luxury resort redefines modern luxury, offering a true sense of locality and with an emphasis on bringing the outside in.

Expertly balancing style and comfort and located on an award-winning beach, Gennadi Grand Resort is smartly designed to reflect its breath-taking setting.

With 266 rooms and suites, most with private pools and equal space outside and in, each room offers sophistication and tranquil beauty and creates a holistic hideaway experience. “We are excited to launch Gennadi Grand Resort, which is a great addition to the Lindos Hotels portfolio. Committed to quality and perfection, Gennadi Grand Resort will offer guests a truly unique and authentic five-star Rhodes experience, combined with a sustainability footprint.” said Kathy Minettos, Owner and Managing Director of Lindos Hotels.

Gennadi Grand ResortAn array of public spaces within this impressive new hotel will include a collection of 11 restaurants and bars, three outdoor swimming pools and one indoor heated pool, a spa/wellness centre, gym, a green roof and theatre, a shopping arcade, conference facilities and a mini club.

As an eco-friendly hotel, Gennadi Grand Resort will operate under a BMS (building management system), to enable efficient energy management. In addition, the property will use a reverse osmosis (RO) plant which provides 20,000 litres of clean, sustainable water per hour using a system that requires little maintenance at low cost. Other energy saving, eco-friendly solutions include a green roof in order to minimise the sunlight reflection and improve the overall microclimate, energy saving glass panels, the latest eco-focused air conditioning/heating system, recycling, litter separation system and energy saving bulbs.

Sneak Peek: MarBella Nido, Corfu

Sneak Peek: MarBella Nido, Corfu

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The newest addition to the MarBella Hotels family, MarBella Nido Suite Hotel & Villas, is set to open on the 5th May 2018.

Nestled into the South-East corner of Corfu in Agios Ioannis Peristeron, this newly built adults-only property is situated adjacent to sister property MarBella Corfu Hotel.

With the hotel name Nido deriving from Italian meaning ‘nest’, the hotel reflects this in its warmth and intimate environment. MarBella Nido will not only offer a cosy and intimate atmosphere with a blend of Corfiot heritage and stylish comfort, but the property will echo Corfu’s natural charm, making guests feel at home during their stay.

MarBella Nido will offer a range of individually designed 70 junior suites, deluxe suites and luxury villas all with stunning views across the glistening waters of the Ionian Sea. Every room from the junior suites up to the luxury villas with private pool offers luxurious elegance. Inspired by the natural environment, each room is complemented by sleek design, modern amenities and breath-taking scenery and sea views at every turn.

This brand new luxurious accommodation stays true to Corfu’s heritage. All suites and villas will be contemporary in design with neutral tones, offering sleek and elegant furnishings combined with the local Corfiot aesthetics.

Sneak Peek: MarBella Nido, CorfuGuests will be welcomed into rooms and suites that offer privacy, relaxation and comfort. Furthermore, many of the suites, including the grand terrace junior suites and deluxe junior suites, come equipped with a private terrace whirlpool as well as stylish sunbeds, table and chairs.


Ikos Resorts has announced that it is adding a third property to its portfolio with the launch of Ikos Dassia, Corfu, opening in May 2018

Ikos Resorts announces launch of Ikos Dassia, Corfu

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Ikos Resorts has announced that it is adding a third property to its portfolio with the launch of Ikos Dassia, Corfu, opening in May 2018. It will bring a new high in all-inclusive dining to the popular Greek island, with Michelin-starred chefs and an innovative ‘Dine-Out’ offering.

The elegant new resort is situated on the bay of Dassia, 15 minutes from the historic Corfu town and 20 minutes from Corfu International Airport, which is serviced daily by major airlines.

Ikos Dassia will boast 403 bedrooms, suites and villas suitable for couples and families, all set within lush gardens and with views across the Ionian Sea. As with all Ikos Resorts, Ikos Dassia will elevate the traditional, all-inclusive experience by offering exceptional quality and choice with no hidden costs.

The resort will boast seven heated swimming pools, including spa pools and adults-only pools, plus a number of private pools, set in beautiful natural surroundings.

The pampering spa and fitness centres will house: private treatment rooms including couples’ suites; indoor/outdoor heated pools with jacuzzi; a thermal suite comprising of steam room and sauna; a hairdressing salon, and beauty corner with nail salon and Anne Sémonin products.

Ikos Dassia’s 403 rooms, suites and one- and two-bedroom villas with differing categories for couples and families will be spread across 20 verdant acres with a beachfront setting and will have luxurious touches including spacious balconies, private gardens and individual pools.

Sani Dunes

New Sani Dunes now open at Sani Resort

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Last week marked the official opening of the much-anticipated Sani Dunes at Greece’s award-winning Sani Resort in Halkidiki.

The brand-new beachfront hotel on the shores of the stunning Kassandra Peninsula boasts the largest outdoor pool in Greece, an exclusive spa, private beach, three restaurants, bar and indoor heated pool. The official opening of Sani Dunes, after a soft opening period, brings the Sani Resort portfolio of hotels to a total of five, all of which continue to offer the very highest levels of service, style and facilities in a beautiful ecological reserve.

Sani DunesBeachfront location & stunning suites
Enjoying an undeniably privileged beachfront location, close to the buzzing boutiques and restaurants of Sani Marina, and with dreamy views of the crystal-clear Aegean Sea, the 136-room Sani Dunes offers the utmost in comfort and luxury. Low-rise contemporary accommodation comprises 80 exceptionally spacious Junior Suites and Panorama Junior Suites, as well as 56 Double and Family Rooms, all furnished with stylish, handcrafted Mediterranean touches. All rooms boast tranquil views overlooking Sani Dunes’ lush green gardens and lagoon pools, with some benefiting from the stunning beachfront location providing panoramic sea views. Several suites offer beautifully appointed terraces, balconies or private gardens, where couples and families alike can relax, unwind and spend quality time together.

All rooms are just metres away from Sani Dunes’ private beach, where king-size umbrellas and luxurious sunbeds await guests looking to make the most of the peaceful beachfront location, while relaxing in the sun, soaking up the gentle sounds of the sea or enjoying a refreshing drink or delicious meal from the Beach Bar.

Sani Dunes

Introducing Sani Dunes

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Greece’s award-winning Sani Resort in Halkidiki has unveiled its newest, luxury retreat – Sani Dunes. Opening late June 2017, Sani Dunes is a brand new concept: a sophisticated, private beachfront hotel exclusively for adults and children over the age of 12.

Benefitting from an exclusive spa, private beach, three restaurants, bar and indoor and outdoor heated pools, Sani Dunes is another step in Sani’s dedication to welcoming “grown up” families and encouraging teenagers to make the most of their family holidays in an active, fun way.

A resort very much ahead of the curve, Sani prides itself on listening and reacting to the needs of hotel guests, and over the years has seen an increasing demand for a relaxing destination, catered exclusively to adults and families with older children. Sani Dunes was specifically created with this feedback in mind and, in line with the Sani Resort portfolio of hotels, will continue to offer the very highest levels of service, style and facilities.

Enjoying an undeniably privileged beachfront location, close to the buzzing boutiques and restaurants of Sani Marina, and with dreamy views of the crystal-clear Aegean Sea, the 136-room Sani Dunes offers the utmost in comfort and luxury. Low-rise contemporary accommodation comprise 80 exceptionally spacious Junior Suites and Panorama Junior Suites, as well as 56 Double and Family Rooms, all furnished with stylish, handcrafted Mediterranean touches. Offering the utmost in comfort and luxury, all rooms boast tranquil views overlooking Sani Dunes’ lush green gardens and lagoon pools, with some benefiting from the stunning beachfront location providing panoramic sea views. Several suites offer beautifully appointed terraces, balconies or private gardens.


Small Luxury Hotels of the World

Guest Blog: New hotels join Small Luxury Hotels Of The World™

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Following our recent 2017 travel trend predictions, we’re bringing you the latest on our newest hotels to look out for in 2017…

The Caribbean takes centre stage

The Manoah Boutique Hotel: Shoal Bay, Anguilla – Opened December 2016
Every aspect of the brand new Manoah Boutique Hotel has been designed to celebrate its stunning location on the shores of Shoal Bay. Opened in December 2016, the 25 bedrooms and suites are decorated in cool neutral shades and each room has a private glass-fronted veranda overlooking the beach. The resort boasts an Olympic-sized swimming pool surrounded by lush tropical gardens plus two tropical beach bars. Guests can opt to spend their days at the tranquil Manoah Spa, or relax on the powdery white sands of Shoal Bay taking in the view. Water sports such as paddle boarding, kayaking or scuba diving can also be arranged. Inspired by a delicious mix of global cuisines, chefs at the Ocean Beach Club Restaurant have created a unique menu using fresh seasonal produce, best enjoyed accompanied by the sound and sights of the sea.

SLH Insider Tip: With local stables nearby, spend an evening on horse-back with a sunset beach ride on Cove Bay.


The Reef by CuisinArt: Anguilla – Opened November 2016
Desirably situated on Merrywing Bay on the tranquil island of Anguilla, The Reef by CuisinArt debuted in November 2016, revealing a beachfront contemporary oasis featuring 80 suites, directly on the Caribbean Sea. The hotel offers an array of accommodation, some with sea views and others that are right on the white sand beach with dramatic outdoor Jacuzzis. Fresh locally sourced ingredients from the on-property hydroponic farm and fresh seafood fill the menu at the nautical inspired fine dining restaurant, The Yacht Club, and the casual cool beach front bar and restaurant, Breezes. The architecture and design of the hotel is fresh and modern, with touches of colour and the sea brought inside and ocean views from almost every window.

SLH Insider Tip: Head to the other end of the island and take a boat out to tiny coral island, Scilly Cay, for live music, delicious lobster and for what many hail as the best rum punch on the island.

Small Luxury Hotels of the World

Le Barthélemy Hotel and Spa: St Barthélemy – Opened November 2016
This exclusive oceanfront resort is SLH’s first property in St Barth’s. The hotel opened its doors in November 2016, welcoming guests to its 46 rooms and suites with interiors by celebrated designer Sybille de Margerie and cuisine by Michelin-starred French chef, Guy Martin. The elegant boutique hotel perfectly captures the laid-back luxury of St Barth’s, with light airy interiors and genuine island hospitality. The bright and airy rooms and suites are decorated to reflect the white sands and turquoise blue of the ocean and each one opens out onto a private terrace with ocean or garden views and private swimming pool. Aux Amis, the resort’s restaurant serves a light menu during the day and in the evening the space opens onto a beachfront terrace where guests can enjoy French and international cuisine overlooking the bay. The hotel’s spa has partnered with luxury French skin care brand La Mer and offers a wide array of treatments in its open-air atrium.

SLH Insider Tip: On the south-east tip of the island sits Anse de Columbiere – this undeveloped bay is only accessible by foot or by boat and is a peaceful haven for those seeking somewhere secluded to swim and sunbathe.

Small Luxury Hotels of the World

Paradise Beach: St Kitts and Nevis
Exclusivity, intimacy and personal service are key at this beachfront resort on the utopian island of St Kitts and Nevis. Boasting an idyllic location – nestled into a glorious white-sand beach and overlooking St Kitts and Mount Nevis – Paradise Beach Nevis has the distinction of being the only villa resort on the Caribbean island of Nevis. The resort is child friendly and the villas for up to eight people make it a great option for a family getaway. Each of the seven villas is its own personal palace with a marble or limestone bath, king beds, a sound system which allows guest to stream their own music, fitness studio, dining rooms for private meals, a private pool, a sea view and kitted out with Hermés bath products. The hand woven, palm roofs were designed to mirror the Nevis Peak, which, combined with lush gardens and an amazing beach, provide a paradise of luxury and tranquillity.

SLH Insider Tip: Probably one of the more well-known attractions but still well worth the hype is the Sugar train –the last scenic railway in the West Indies. The double decker carriages have open sided top decks for guests to enjoy the breeze along with their rum punch and the sounds of the trains own choir.


Point Grace Resort and Spa: Grace Bay, Turks and Caicos
An all-suite hideaway surrounded by perfect sandy beaches as far as the eye can see, Point Grace Resort and Spa overlooks the stunning Grace Bay and is SLH’s first hotel in Turks and Caicos. The tropical resort is turn-of the-century style with a contemporary twist and consists of 25 suites all spanning over 1,000 square feet, two restaurants and the Thalasso Spa, where treatments are inspired by the ocean. Grace’s Cottage, the hotel’s fine dining restaurant is an architectural gem featuring picturesque outdoor seating where old world elegance meets modern gourmet cuisine. Guests can also enjoy lunch and breakfast at Hutchings, which is nestled in a tropical garden and serves casual food with a Caribbean influence. A unique collection of African tribal crafts and artwork can be found dotted around the hotel, most of which are locally sourced from the island and lend an insight into the culture and travel experience of the turn of the century West Indian traveller.

SLH Insider Tip: If you’re a wildlife lover visit the Leeward settlement, an uninhabited islet known as ‘Iguana Island’ – a sanctuary for the endangered Turks & Caicos Rock Iguana.

Small Luxury Hotels of the World

Unique Island Escapes

Kokomo Island: Kadavu Islands , Fiji – Opening March 2017
Combining luxury, sustainability and unspoilt beauty, Kokomo Island is Fiji’s newest and most exclusive private island resort, situated on the edge of the celestial Kadavu Island group. Kokomo Island opens in March 2017 and is the first SLH hotel in Fiji. The boutique property is encircled by the untouched Great Astrolabe Reef so ideal for diving enthusiasts (the hotel has its own Dive Centre for guests). The 21 villas, owner’s beachfront residence and five hilltop residences are designed for privacy and comfort, featuring sustainable design and traditional Fijian touches, all alive with character. Guests can enjoy fresh, sustainably-sourced produce at the resort’s three restaurants, as well as a number of dining experiences including a chef BBQ and private island picnic. The Kokomo Island spa blends world-class Sodashi products with rejuvenating indigenous Fijian beauty rituals to create signature treatments. The hotel is a personal passion project for Australian billionaire property developer, Lang Walker, who, together with his family, has brought his vision for an island paradise like no other to life.

SLH Insider Tip: Visit the nearby manta ray cleaning station, where manta rays come to get freshened up by wrasse fish, and take the opportunity to swim with the rays.

Small Luxury Hotels of the World

Naxian Collection Luxury Villas and Suites: Naxos, Greece
Situated on the lesser known Greek island of Naxos, Naxian Collection is a chic hill-top retreat with ten sugar cube white villas and suites providing a serene sanctuary. The cave-like rooms are decked out with minimalist interiors, cream walls, bamboo screens and giant bathtubs. Each room offers stunning views over landscaped gardens, lagoons and nearby Naxos town, which is just two miles away. Pretty Agios Prokopios beach is just a ten minute walk from the property and there are plenty of walking or horse-riding trails to keep outdoorsy guests busy. The hotel’s kitchen boasts plenty of local organic ingredients and traditional Naxian recipes from the property’s own organic field, free-range chicken coop, nearby olive groves and the family vineyards. It also has its own wine cellar which is home to a formidable selection of local wine.

SLH Insider Tip: Try and time your stay with a classical music concert or violin recital at the Venetian Museum of Naxos in the Kastro which offers live entertainment year round.

Small Luxury Hotels of the World

Sikelia: Pantelleria, Italy
Known as the ‘Black pearl of the Mediterranean’, Pantelleria is a perfect escape for adventurous travellers willing to voyage a little further to be rewarded by natural volcanic hot springs, a rugged coastline, spectacular caves surrounded by the bluest of seas and warm volcanic waters to swim in. The enigmatic owner, Giulia Pazienz, ensures all the service is personal, friendly and sincere. Built out of an ancient dammuso, designed by the island’s most famous resident architect – Gabriella Guintoli, the wild beauty of the island is reflected in the hotel itself. Ancient pottery, glazed painted tiles and predominantly dark shades throughout lend an air of drama to the property. The 20 rooms are unique yet share a stylish design with meticulous attention to the finer details, with Frette linens and Hermés products in every bathroom. At the hotel’s restaurant, Themá, the chef combines fresh fish and shellfish with vegetables grown in Sikelia’s own garden, serving bold flavours from Arabia, Africa and Southern Italy. This is all served with intense, aromatic wine from the owner’s estate, made from the Zibibbo grape, indigenous of the island.

SLH Insider Tip: For a more informal dining experience, guests can head to the owner’s Coste Ghirlanda Wine Laboratory which is flooded with candles and offers a rustic cosy vibe where guests eat under the stars on communal kitchen tables.

Small Luxury Hotels of the World


New hotel openings in 2017

Exciting hotel openings in 2017

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For the luxury traveller, this year is playing host to the opening of a plethora of exciting and truly spectacular openings, with hotels going to even greater lengths to cater for the ever-growing needs of the discerning holidaymaker.

From a former Presidential Palace in the hot destination of Vientiane, Laos to a stunning new spa destination in the ancient forests of Langkawi – here are some of the hottest hotels opening in 2017…

President by AKARYN, Laos – opening March
Rather than refer to the property as the group’s first hotel in Laos, the team at AKARYN prefer to describe it as Laos’ first hotel. An aura of timeless style and elegance pervades each of the 32 guest rooms and suites with an individual butler to be called upon whenever guests require assistance.

New hotel openings in 2017

The President by AKARYN has also been selected by the United Nations-led ASIA Geographical Indication (GI) programme as its main partner. In line with its sustainable approach to business growth and destination development, AKARYN Hotel Group will give back to local communities through sustainable sources of local income to promote sustainable living and tourism.

The Ritz-Carlton, Langkawi – opening July
Marking The Ritz-Carlton, Langkawi as a new spa destination, the spa will have the only overwater treatment rooms with a Hammam on the island. As part of the launch, the resort will be launching a comprehensive wellness/lifestyle programme, inviting guests to relax and indulge in their locally inspired treatments, which have thoughtfully been created to draw upon the rich cultural elements of Langkawi.

New hotel openings in 2017

With white sandy beaches stretching between the Andaman Sea and a million-year old rainforest as a backdrop, The Ritz -Carlton, Langkawi blends in beautifully with its surroundings. It was designed to reflect a traditional kampong village with 90 guest rooms and 30 villas, three swimming pools, a locally inspired spa, international restaurants and three meeting and wedding venues.

Domes Noruz Chania, Autograph Collection – Opens March
Sister hotel to the legendary Domes of Elounda, the Domes Noruz Chania, Autograph Collection is an 83 room and suites, adults-only, beachfront boutique hotel. This brand new Exactly Like Nothing Else experiential hotel in Chania, complete with a buzzy atmosphere, is a must visit destination for all likeminded travellers, who crave relaxation, a fun environment, in a chic, ultra-stylish surrounding.

New hotel openings in 2017

Akyra Beach Club Phuket, Thailand – opened December 2016
Though each resort is distinctive in its own right, Aleenta Phuket and akyra Beach Club Phuket combine to offer guests an unrivalled leisure and dining destination while also retaining the charm of a secluded beachside enclave. The location feels a world away from the well-trodden beaches of Phuket and sits comfortably between multi-million dollar private homes and local fishing communities.

New hotel openings in 2017

Custom designed to lift the spirit and calm the soul, the akyra Beach Club Phuket boasts 59 luxurious rooms and stylish stand-alone villas with generous living spaces, branded amenities and a profusion high-end inclusions. Leading edge resort facilities include a beach spa and fully equipped gym and the resort’s integrated beach club offers guests a choice of refined waterfront dining options as they recline in cushioned cabanas or laze on luxury loungers surrounding an enticing beachfront pool.

Hurawalhi – Opened December 2016
Hurawalhi Island Resort, Maldives, is unparalleled, extraordinary and utterly original. Environmentally innovative, a breath-taking Undersea Restaurant, a tropical Champagne Pavilion, stylish Villas and an adults-only policy – Hurawalhi offers its own take on Paradise. Just a 40-minute seaplane flight from Male’, here are a distinctive collection of superbly designed, exclusive and supremely spacious Villas strung across the glittering lagoon – perfectly positioned so that guests can enjoy exquisite sunset panoramas. And with dining options that include on the beach, over the water, and even under the water, the philosophy here is that nothing is impossible.

Hurawalhi Maldives

Sani Dunes - new concept for Greece

Sani Dunes – a new hospitality concept for Greece

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Sani Resort, the five-star resort and ecological reserve in Halkidiki, is expanding its choice of suites and rooms with a brand new adult-friendly hotel, Sani Dunes, set to open at the end of June 2017.

This chic new destination will offer a private beach, indoor and outdoor heated pools, an exclusive spa with six private treatment rooms, including a couple’s suite with private steam bath, a special Thai massage cabin, fitness studio and gourmet restaurants.

Sani Dunes - hospitality concept for Greece


Low-rise contemporary accommodation will comprise 80 exceptionally spacious Junior Suites and Panorama Junior Suites, as well as 56 Double and Family Rooms, all furnished with stylish, handcrafted Mediterranean touches. Several suites will offer beautifully appointed terraces, balconies or private gardens.

Grace Santorini

Grace Santorini reopens with fresh new design

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Grace Santorini reopened for the summer season in May 2016 with a fresh new design following a complete renovation to enhance the iconic luxury boutique hotel.

The renovation consultancy and interior design was handled by Fifth Element Interiors London and SMK Interiors Greece. The plans for Grace Santorini involved adding to the beauty of the interiors that had been the subject of consistent critical acclaim since it opened, reimagining the minimalist whitewashed rooms whilst delivering something authentic and true to its Hellenic heritage.

Innovative design, a new Champagne Lounge and dedicated yoga and Pilates studio provides guests with a significantly upgraded experience, whilst retaining the intimacy it has become synonymous with.

Grace Santorini

The 21-room hotel is carved into the cliff-face 300m above Santorini’s volcanic caldera. Award-winning architecture practices Divercity and Mplusm, known for their ability to handle challenging briefs in a variety of locations and contexts, were responsible for the original development of the hotel, completed in 2008. In 2010 they were tasked with the addition of The Villa, a 400 sq m luxury residence complete with its own Volcanic Spa, completed in 2012.

The understated design allows the extraordinary landscape to take centre stage. The hotel provides a contemporary interpretation of vernacular architecture, employing economy of space and simplicity. The infinity pool’s jagged outline echoes the zigzag paths that cross Santorini’s sheer terrain.

Grace Santorini
Founders of Fifth Element, Christina Logothetis and Staci Perkins-Surla, comment: “Our challenge was to preserve the original use of white and avoid cold minimalism, ensuring a balance that reveals an unmistakable sense of luxury and understated beauty. By subtly introducing a new colour palette with furnishings, fixtures and fittings exuding the highest standards of quality, we aimed to set standards on the global stage.”

Rooms & Suites
The refurbished rooms and suites, whilst maintaining the Grace hallmark of elegance and simplicity, have a contemporary style, combining cutting edge and bespoke design alongside traditional handcrafted pieces.

Grace Santorini
The objective was to maximise the ability to enjoy the view and the space outside. Grace Santorini’s hotel rooms all have a frontal orientation to make the most of the panoramic views. Every single room allows you to have breakfast outside, 19 of the 21 rooms include plunge pools and the largest rooms have round day beds with retractable canopies.

Grace Santorini
Inspired by the island’s ‘yposkafa’ cave-like dwellings, the hotel has rounded walls and domed roofs excavated from the rock-face. All-white interiors with brushed concrete floors reiterate the trademark whitewashed houses of the Cyclades.

Grace Santorini
Elements of local materials and architectural techniques can be found throughout the hotel. This is exemplified by the feature of volcanic rock fragments that are positioned in the windows of four rooms, interspersed with apertures that provide glimpses to the sea. This echoes a local architectural technique in which minimal amounts of mortar are used, leaving gaps between the stonework creating a light-filtering screen that allows privacy, ventilation and casts dappled shadows as the sun goes down.

Accents in turquoise, aubergine or navy are featured in some rooms, a colour palette synonymous with Santorini and the Mediterranean. Traditional Aegean walnut was used for the design, as opposed to non-indigenous wood like teak and driftwood found in other island properties. 40% of the world’s walnut produced in the Peloponnese.

Grace Santorini

Products from the local region complement the interiors and include handmade walnut desks with Vibeffe 9500 Marble and walnut coffee tables. Wardrobes with solid walnut interiors include an innovative in-room bar which will offer a cocktail-making kit for guests. The luxurious bathrooms offer double vanity units with basins hand carved from solid Greek Statuario marble and spacious rain showers with mosaic feature walls.

The sofas are handmade in Greece and upholstered in C & C Milano fabrics along with handmade throws and rugs especially hand-dyed for Grace Santorini. Rooms are complete with a curated collection of accessories including pieces from the Cycladic Museum and Greek artisanal marble bowls. Further details include marble accessories and brass book ends based on traditional Greek design from Two is Company.


Wyndham Grand Athens

Wyndham Hotel Group opens luxury property in Athens

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Wyndham Hotel Group has announced that accessible luxury is coming to Athens when the Wyndham Grand Athens, the first Wyndham Hotel Group hotel in Greece, opens in the city centre early next year. Travel is the best excuse to enjoy the grand things in life, and Wyndham Grand hotels and resorts offer truly unforgettable travel experiences.

Wyndham Grand is decidedly not pretentious, but approachable by design, featuring pristine guestrooms, relaxing spas, one-of-a kind dining experiences, and more. The Wyndham Grand Athens will be situated on Karaiskaki Place, where Zeus International, a company that operates nine hotels across Eastern Europe, is transforming the building owned by VIOHALCO which formerly housed the Hotel Athens Imperial.

When renovations are complete, the Wyndham Grand Athens will boast 273 rooms, 2,500 sq. m. of conference and event space, a restaurant, a bar, a spa and an amazing roof-garden of 450 sq. m. with a pool and a 360° view of the city skyline. In addition, the hotel’s proximity to the Metro and many of Athens’ cultural points of interest will make it a destination for business and leisure travellers alike.

Dan Ruff, President and Managing Director EMEA, for Wyndham Hotel Group, said: “Wyndham Grand hotels are located in some of the world’s most sought after destinations, including Shanghai, Istanbul, Doha, Salzburg, Chicago, Orlando and now Athens. This is only our first stop in Greece, as we see opportunities for many of our brands across the country, from city centres such as Athens and Thessaloniki to resort destinations in the Greek islands and mainland.”

Haris Siganos, Founder of Zeus International, noted: “Our Company is engaged in a variety of consulting and advisory projects from hotel management and development to turnaround management. We have been monitoring the Greek market for the right hospitality investment opportunity. We believe that Athens has been missing a flagship hotel offering a one-of-a-kind experience with a compelling local flavour, and we intend to change this when the Wyndham Grand Athens opens next year.”

Daios Cove unveils new exclusive villa - The Mansion

Daios Cove reveals details of new ultra-exclusive villa

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This June the luxury resort of Daios Cove, Crete, is opening ‘The Mansion’ – a new exclusive villa which comes complete with exquisite design, outdoor heated pool, indoor heated pool, tranquil in-house spa and staff quarters.

The three-bedroom hideaway, which is set on the north-east shores of the island, will be available for guests to rent from 2nd June, setting a new benchmark for villa accommodation on this stunning Greek island.

The Design
The new villa’s state-of-the-art design takes inspiration from the spectacular setting of Daios Cove. Located on the tranquil turquoise shores of Crete in its own private cove, The Mansion’s design and layout make the most of the setting’s abundant natural light – huge floor to ceiling windows line the airy building, meaning guests can enjoy the incredible views from almost any point in the room.

Daios Cove unveils new exclusive villa - The Mansion

An example of Daios Cove’s current villa offering

The interiors are fresh and modern – light, natural woods line the floors, white marble creates an incredible sense of space, while glass also dominates. The overall space is an impressive 600sqm set over three levels, with outdoor space making up 300sqm. Designer furniture has been meticulously chosen and includes unique pieces from world-famous contemporary brands B&B Italia and Maxalto. Natural light floods the property, while designer lighting from Catellani & Smith and Occhio provides warm and intimate lighting for cocktails and private evening meals.

Bang & Olufsen speakers are discreetly placed through the property to provide a soundtrack to cooking, sunbathing or working out. The Mansion comes compete with staff quarters, should guests wish to make the most of Crete’s glorious natural produce and cuisine by leaving a chef to combine delicious fresh ingredients in the fully equipped kitchen. If holiday makers prefer getting the opportunity to cook themselves, the modern, clean-cut kitchen boasts a clutter-free design.

Daios Cove unveils new exclusive villa - The Mansion

An example of Daios Cove’s current villa offering

The Master Bedroom
While the property boasts three beautiful bedrooms, two with walk-in wardrobes, the master bedroom is a particularly impressive thanks to its ceiling-high windows with some of the best views on the island, looking out over the azure water of the Aegean sea and sun-drenched cliffs surrounding the property.

Fresh white furniture and cotton linen creates an immediate sense of calm, while the bathroom is a sanctuary, with twin sinks, a deep bathtub perfect for a relaxing bubble bath and huge shower cabin – all of which come with the mesmerising views the Mansion is sure to be famous for.

The Spa
Guests looking to really relax will adore the Mansion’s own fully equipped spa. Beautiful tiles line the wall of the Starpool steam bath and 20sqm-metre heated indoor pool, while the sauna is spacious enough for several guests to enjoy at the same time.

Ikos Olivia

Brand new beach-front suites at Halkidiki hotel Ikos Olivia

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Ikos Olivia, a contemporary and stylishly designed hotel on Greece’s Halkidiki coast, is set to open four new, two-bedroom beach-front bungalow suites this year.

Each suite has a private garden and offers views of the Aegean Sea, while also offering the perfect accompaniment to the nearby Aristotle Walking Trail.

The brand new ultra-spacious suites are ideal for the larger family, featuring two stylishly elegant bedrooms and separate lounge for extra privacy in contemporary and luxurious style, combined with a bathroom with tropical shower complete with Anne Semonin bathroom amenities. These beachfront suites come with a furnished balcony or a private garden complete with sun-loungers and just in front of the hotel’s beach.

These suites are set to complement the existing 142 bedrooms and junior suites, as well as the 145 private bungalow suites.