I stayed at the gardenia hotel together with my wife for one week in August 2012. We enjoyed our holliday and can recommend this hotel to others. We travelled with Apollo from Norway and this two star hotel is located 300 m from one of the best beaches on Santorini near a cluster of good restaurants. The hotel is very clean and the Italian-Greek staff is very friendly and helpful, and does not mind at all for guests to stop and chat for a few minutes when entering or leaving the hotel, shares willingly there local knowledge of Santorini. We felt very comfortable and at ease living at Gardenia.
There are several rentals of Motos, Mopeds, four wheel MC:s and cars nearby, as well as other tour operator for boat trips as well as several good restaurants. A local bus stop with good communication is also within 5 min walk from the hotel. Location is superb!
The beach is volcanic sand so yes it does get warm in the sun, but there are wooden trails to get you within 10 m of the sea. The grass is NOT greaner elsewhere. Even the "red beach" and the "white beach" has volcanic sand, only with a red or white mountain behind, which must be made very clear. We recommend you to turn left when you arrive at the beach and walk 5-10 min along it until you arrive at the base of the mountain. Good sand beach with the best snorkling and many showers exist there. There is were families with children go.
Due to all tourists visiting Santorini (and its increase in water consumption) the grounbd water level is low, which results in infiltration of sea water. This is a general problem on Santorini, and the water was somewhat salty in the shower in our room. No problem for us, but if you are sensitive to these things, be informed at the planning stage of your trip.
About the music, we read about before coming here? We lived Saturday - Thursday and did not hear anything. On Friday the music came on from the waterland next to the hotel. Was it loud? No. We were not bothered, and it stoped well before we were going to slep.
Is it safe or advisable to visit Santorini considering the debt crisis? Fewer tourists arrive in Santorini than before the crisis, which means it is not crowded and the tour operators offer sweat deals to compete for the few tourists that exist. We took a volcano trip for six hours including bathing in hot springs, tour of the volcano, snorkling in extremely blue and clear water (the movie Le Grand Bleu was shot on an island nearby). For the price of 17 Euro / person. Before arriving we read about such trips for 40-50 Euro / person.
Furthermore the ambience is surpricingly relaxed, it took less than 24 h until both of us came into 100% vaccation mode upon arrival. The traffic (with 50+ nationalities on the rudimentary roads) is chaotic, but there is no aggresion, no jumping the horn or showing the finger. I have never experienced something like this before!
We stayed in room 8 and enclose pictures of the view from our balcony. Right in front a ranger backyard in the form of an abandoned construction site. It may not look so great but after 16-17 h we spent nice afternoons and evenings there. One easy and cheap way to improve the hotel would be to upgrade the chairs on the balcony to comfortable arm chairs or sun chairs. The main reason we went inside was because chairs were not so comfortable.
We had a wonderful week on Santorini, and recommend others to visit also!
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.