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“Wish we could say the Arosmari is "terrible" so we can keep it to ourselves but it was a simply wonderful, peaceful plac” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Arosmari Village Retreat

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Arosmari Village Retreat
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Vamos, Apokoronas, Crete, Greece   |  
Hotel amenities
Tetbury, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
111 reviews 111 reviews
66 hotel reviews
Reviews in 87 cities Reviews in 87 cities
113 helpful votes 113 helpful votes
“Wish we could say the Arosmari is "terrible" so we can keep it to ourselves but it was a simply wonderful, peaceful plac”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 17, 2013

While we wish we could say "it's terrible" so we can keep it to ourselves, in truth the Arosmari Cottages in Vamos, Crete, are fantastic - truly a "retreat" and an oasis of peace away from hectic lives back at home !

We were fortunate to find this place almost randomly - we are normally more into road trips around Europe so to go to a resort and stay in the same place for two whole weeks is new for us. But the Arosmari Hotel - it recently changed from self catering, to a Adults Only venue - spells "relaxation" from the start. The booking process was personal and friendly, the office staff had all visited the hotel and spoke enthusiastically about it and the beautiful surrounding Cretan countryside. The arrangements at the airport were simple and the directions spot on.

When you get here to the village of Vamos, you find a number of detached and semi-detached cottages all lovingly restored by the owner, Nikos. The furthest is no more than a couple of minutes walk from the pool and the central breakfast area, where you can discuss plans for the day and experiences with your fellow guests and what they recommend. The utterly brilliant concierge, Trish (more of a friend than a concierge, actually) is on hand daily to help plan your tours and recommend the best places to eat. There are some organised events but we were under no pressure to get involved in them. Trish's husband, Mike, is a great guy who works around the place - he speaks Greek and has a good knowledge of the surrounding area too.

We stayed in Rosemari Cottage which is detached and private – simple but supremely comfortable with every facility you could need. Breakfast is prepared by Ruby, a lovely, exuberant and amusing lady together with her assistant Lena who is very sweet. There is a fine spread, as much as you can eat, and the eggs are local and SO rich, yellow and tasty. The marmalade is made from oranges in the garden and they even have their own walnuts !

Nothing is too much trouble when it come to nice touches.....from the candle lanterns lit each night, the imaginative exterior decor around the place - huge pots and other ornaments around the stunning garden which makes the whole thing so authentic. We were even presented with a fabulous cheesecake which appeared in the fridge when Trish found out it was our wedding anniversary. The grounds even has its own tiny consecrated Chapel which is beautiful. And when Crete had its most dramatic earth tremor in years, an alarmed looking Trish was rushing around checking we were all ok.....actually it was an amazing experience to have felt the earth move.....there was no apparent damage.

Crete is a very large island - much bigger than some might imagine, roughly 200 miles east to west and 45 miles north to south so there is masses to do although the practicalities of traversing the island all the way from east to west would be an issue as there are no motorways and the roads are often small and winding.

There is plenty to see for history buffs from Minoan ruins to locations of WW2 atrocities (Crete had a pretty gruesome war) and the corresponding British Commonwealth and German war cemeteries both of which are very moving. There are many beautiful mountain villages and a stunning coastline with quaint little fishing harbours. If you are looking for recommendations feel free to get in touch !

Finally, Simpson Travel do a wonderful job of making sure that all is running smoothly - I had a problem with my car and they just handled everything.

So If you're looking for peace and quiet, relaxation.......Arosmari Traditional Village Hotel in Vamos, Crete, is THE place !! I had added a few photos that are different from some of the others !

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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39 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (13)
Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
Yetminster
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 10, 2013

We have just returned from a second stay at this wonderful hotel, and it was just as good as the first time. The setting is excellent, quiet and relaxing. The cottages are essentially self-catering, but breakfast is included and light lunches can be provided on request. A wonderful team look after you from the moment you arrive and provide a really friendly atmosphere. The cottages are very comfortable and the gardens, which are very well kept, provide seating in shaded areas as well as sun-loungers by the pool. The owner, Nikos, really cares for the place and will sometimes organise concerts with local musicians in the small amphitheatre which he has built in the gardens. Local tavernas and beaches make this a great holiday location, though you do need the car which is provided by Simpson Travel.

Room Tip: Some cottages have balconies, but not all.
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 9, 2013

All ten of the cottages look absolutely charming and are in very close proximity of the main 'hotel' area which comprises of an open sided reading/relaxing room and open sided and sheltered breakfast terrace/room. Also comfortable outside seating areas. The gardens are meticulously maintained as is the pool area. Mint cottage is a bit of a hidden gem and would be the ideal choice for anyone who welcomes privacy. Set just off the very quiet country lane adjacent to the hotel entrance it is approached through an archway into a courtyard area where there are steps to the right leading to Fennel and Bay, neither of these properties use these steps as they both have more direct entrances. A further arch leads to an enclosed dining courtyard and the entrance to Mint, a single story stone built cottage with both a front and side door which in turn leads to another smaller terrace with a side view over a field and countryside beyond (field is a bit tatty). Inside the cottage is surprisingly large with lovely original features and exposed stonework. The dressing area is spacious with large wardrobe and there is even a single bed behind a screen. Shower room is small but perfectly adequate.
Bedroom which is on a raised, part open plan level was larger than expected with two high up windows and again ample storage. The cottage is dark but this is a blessing as beautifully cool when hot outside, equally when the weather turned cold it was warm, so the best of both worlds. However what we were not expecting was the private roof terrace, reached via steps from the courtyard. This terrace is spectacular, sun loungers (not the most comfortable I have ever relaxed on), table, chairs and umbrella but the icing on the cake is the breathtaking view of the white mountains and the garden of the hotel. For sun and scenery lovers this is the ideal relaxing/sunbathing area. We never felt the need to lie by the pool. All those who work at Arosmari are delightful and extremely good at their jobs and nothing seems to be too much trouble.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Milton Keynes, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 2, 2013

What a fantastic week away my husband and I have just enjoyed at Chamomile cottage in the Arosmari village hotel.
We travelled with Simpson and were met on arrival at the airport by Mike who directed us to the car hire desk and we had very clear driving instructions to the resort.
A 50 minute journey by car was well worth it when we stepped into the idyllic grounds greeted by Trish and Nikos, offering us a refreshing drink and a very warm welcome.
The breakfasts were fabulous and like many people before us we wanted to kidnap Ruby and take her home so she could be our personal chef! I would recommend, as Trish did to me, the pancakes with yoghurt, fruit and honey. A wonderful way to start the day.

All of the parts to this holiday were excellent, the only reason I have marked the sleeping quality down is due to the church bells that are very clear in this mountain village - it gives a wonderful flavour of local life however and I can't complain about it!

Trish really was a fount of information and even though we were affectionately referred to as the "young people" by everyone else there, we felt very included.

An absolute must for the discerning traveller if you're looking for rest, relaxation and a few walks thrown in.

Room Tip: All the cottages were lovely and I couldn't recommend one over another.
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Watlington, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 11, 2013

A lovely, small, quiet, adult-only resort in a historic Cretan village about 40 minutes' drive from Chania comprising 10 cottages around a pool, pleasant gardens and outside dining area.
The cottages are sympathetically restored and there is intelligent and helpful assistance from the on-site concierge,Trish. Grounds are very well maintained by Mike, super breakfasts are courtesy of Ruby and Lena and careful oversight of the whole by owner, Nikos. There are occasional (separately organised) musical evenings in the little amphitheatre in the garden, and beaches and spectacular mountain drives are only a few minutes away.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Glossop, United Kingdom
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 8, 2013

This is the perfect place for a relaxing holiday. It's adults only, which is great for anyone wanting a really peaceful holiday. The resort is a collection of 10 cottages clustered on the edge of Vamos, a quiet village about 10 minutes drive from the coast. The cottages have been beautifully and thoughtfully restored by the owner, Nicos. The pool was never crowded as most guests tend to go out for part of the day. Sunbeds were never reserved with towels and because of this there were always sunbeds free at any time of day. Breakfast was simple, but delicious. There is a beautiful reading room overlooking the pool and lots of comfy chairs in shady areas of the garden where you can sit and read.The Simpson rep, Trish, was around every morning and was very knowledgeable about the island. She has excellent tips about parking in Chania and Rethymno. She also has beach umbrellas and cool bags to lend out. The village itself was a bit on the quiet side for us but that's just personal taste. There are several traditional Greek cafes which serve traditional food such as gyros/kebabs. They are really cheap and very good value for money. The small gyros cafe just off the square is excellent. There are also a couple of tavernas. The Sterna of Bloumosifis is highly rated. We ate there 3 times but we found the quality very inconsistent, ranging from very good to disgusting. The small gyros cafe just off the square is excellent. This resort is just absolute perfection.

Room Tip: We stayed in Rosemary - beautiful views of the mountains and very spacious rooms. It's 2-storey...
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 26, 2013

A wonderful place to stay. We loved the village with its old buildings and views of the mountains. A working Cretan village managing tourism sustainably. The Arosmari was a peaceful haven of old cottages and a beautiful garden and pool. The owner Nikos has incorporated historical elements and items into the garden. Trish was a friendly and helpful hostess and we enjoyed Ruby's breakfasts. We did a cooking lesson in the village and went to three open air music evenings. The beaches are a short drive away.

Room Tip: Ask for a good view
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Arosmari Village Retreat

Address: Vamos, Apokoronas, Crete, Greece
Location: Greece > Crete > Chania Prefecture > Apokoronas > Vamos
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 7 Specialty Lodging in Vamos
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Arosmari Village Hotel is a haven; a cluster of stone and cypress wood cottages with a beautiful garden at its heart, set in the timeless village of Vamos. Here, among roses, jasmine and lavender are many secret corners to read, meditate or sleep the afternoon away. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Arosmari Village Retreat Hotel Vamos
Arosmari Village Retreat Vamos, Crete, Greece

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