Pristine beaches, world-class spas, cool design hotels… and did someone say ouzo? Time to get your Greek on…
Elounda Peninsula Hotel, Crete
Best for… the ultimate drop and flop experience
As every room in this multi-award-winning hotel is a generous suite with pool, it’s already a notch or three above most holiday accommodation. Throw in the fact that you’re surrounded by stunning sea views, you can use the facilities of its two sprawling sister properties (hello amazing Six Senses spa, golf course and kids’ club that looks like an actual Noah’s Ark) and you seriously never need leave. There are restaurants galore, including the seafront Italian Aglio e Olio, and grown-up pan Asian dishes at Koh. Plus gym, indoor pool, saunas, hammam and impressive new 420 sq metre seafront pool – the largest in Crete.
Stella loves: Family-friendly hotel restaurant, Nafsika – the superb buffet groans with fresh fish, while the pudding counter is the devil’s work.
Out and about: Grab a cab or drive four miles (7km) along the coast to the bustling town of Agios Nikolaos. Shop for olive oil, baklava and ouzo before heading for a drink or traditional meal at one of the many restaurants by the lake. Take a boat from nearby Elounda (they’re every 30 minutes) to the island of Spinalonga, site of a former leper colony and setting for Victoria Hislop’s novel, The Island.