Hotel Review: Asterion Suites and Spa, Platanias in Crete


Words by Graeme Culliford

I finally know how it feels to be a flower. My body is stretched out on a mat, the sun is on my face. I cannot move or even open my eyes because I fear getting a ticking off from our yoga instructor Manuel, who is leading this beachside meditation.

The only sound I can hear is the rustle of early morning walkers and the gentle whoosh of Aegean waves lapping against the sand. With little else to do, I find myself focusing on the myriad of warm colours building inside my iris as my limbs relax and my pores soak up the nourishing rays.

It occurs to me that I am like a plant in summer, rooted to the spot and absorbing the sounds and sensations of the world all around. It will not be the last time I feel so connected to nature at the Asterion Suites and Spa on the west coast of Crete.

This latest addition to the Greek island’s luxury hotel roster promises to provide a “sanctuary where you can reign in your inner kingdom and expand the limits of your own universe.”

I am not sure that imagining myself as a flower is quite what they had in mind, but I certainly remembered how to relax during my four day visit. Here’s the lowdown on what you can expect.

Hotel

asterion hotel suites
Asterion Suites and Spa is the perfect escape for those who want a compact hotel with spacious rooms and suites

With 67 rooms and suites, the Asterion Suites and Spa is a nice size for those who do not want to walk for miles to enjoy the facilities. But it is also big enough that you are not forced to have awkward meals in empty dining rooms under the gaze of hotel staff.

The main restaurant is bright and chic with an al fresco dining area and overlooks a rectangular pool, which backs on to an outdoor bar. Next to this is a promenade and beach where morning yoga and meditation classes are held, so it’s all very simple and compact.

The hotel is about to bring in a no-child policy so you are unlikely to find kids fighting over the breakfast buffet in the morning. You might, however, notice one of the half dozen cats and kittens that have taken up residence following you back to your room. I awoke one morning to find one napping in the chair next to my private pool.

Room

asterion suites balcony
Spacious accommodation includes the one-bedroom swim up suite

While the hotel is pleasingly petit, many of the rooms are huge. I arrived with the intention of catching up on some work, but I soon found that lounging around in one of the white dressing gowns provided was much more enjoyable. My one-bedroom suite was billed as a ‘swim-up room’ as it came with a decent-sized plunge pool on the balcony, which proved a great spot to enjoy a quiet moment (as long as I wasn’t disturbing the moggy).

The interior’s soft, earthy colours were soothing and reflective of the Cretan landscape while the plush furniture was of the highest quality. I also appreciated having a fully working kitchen where I could make an espresso in the morning and crack open a bottle of wine at night.

Food and drink

asterion suites food
The hotel’s two restaurants serve a mix of local Cretan cuisine and international favourites

The breakfast buffet is a highlight and includes an array of options made with local ingredients. I quickly developed an addiction for thick Greek yoghurt drenched over fresh fruit and topped with delicious honey scraped straight off the comb. I would also recommend putting a big portion of Greek salad next to the eggs the chef will cook to order.

Many of the evening meals are ‘good for the gram’ (Instagram), like the chicken kebab that comes on a towering metal skewer. Come prepared to finish your meal with a shot of raki and, if you like rose wines, make sure you try the Greek options as they rival anything you can find in Provence.

Spa

The spa staff were typically welcoming but Manuel – I have to admit – was not happy with the state of my physique. Apparently being hunched over a desk all day is not great for your back muscles and mine were riddled with knots. Manuel battled valiantly to iron them out during my massage, but by the end he seemed defeated. “I’ve done my best, but there’s a limit to what I can do,” he said. “You should go swimming more often.” It’s not so easy to go for a dip when you live in London, and not a Greek island, I wanted to point out; but I was already in a dream-like state, so I decided to let it go.

To do

crete olive trees mountain
Exploring the lush island of Crete is a popular activity for guests

You will probably find it tempting to cocoon yourself at the hotel until it’s time to fly home, but if you can peel yourself from the sun lounger there are some great options to explore. I was impressed by the abundance of nature you will find amidst Crete’s picturesque villages and how much food is produced here. Olive groves and vineyards stretch for miles and every tree you pass on the roadside seems overloaded with fruit.

We went for a wine tasting at Anoskeli winery and were also given a fascinating tour of the adjoining olive plant where farmers take their freshly harvested produce. The hotel can book for you to have a private yacht tour of the island that is highly recommended, and we also visited a family-run restaurant called Frosini’s where the hearty Greek meals were exceptional.

In a nutshell

This is a five-star boutique hotel where you really can lose yourself in luxury and forget about your first world worries. Do come to relax; forget about getting any work done.

Factbox

Address: PEO Kissamou Chanion, Platanias 730 14, Greece
Phone: +30 2821 020945
Website: asterionsuitesandspa.com

easyJet and British Airways fly directly to Chania airport in Crete from London’s Gatwick, Luton and Heathrow airports. The flight takes four hours.

easyJet holidays offers seven nights at the five-star Asterion Suites and Spa in an ocean one-bedroom swim up suite with garden view, on a bed and breakfast basis for £1,219 per person including 23kg of luggage per person, transfers and flights from London Luton on 1 May 2023.

easyJet holidays offers seven nights at the five-star Asterion Suites and Spa in a cosmos superior double room with garden view, on a bed and breakfast basis for £784 per person including 23kg of luggage per person, transfers and flights from London Luton on 1 May 2023.

easyJet holidays offers seven nights at the five-star Asterion Suites and Spa in a galaxy one-bedroom suite with private pool, on a bed and breakfast basis for £1,234 per person including 23kg of luggage per person, transfers and flights from London Luton on 5 May 2023.

Book a beach holiday or city break with easyJet holidays (easyjet.com/en/holidays tel: 0330 365 5005)

For more information on visiting Crete head over to: incrediblecrete.gr



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  1. Content Generator November 21, 2022

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