Returned yesterday morning, we already wish that we were back there! First time in Zakynthos and probably not the last. I will try and give you an honest and detailed review.
Tsilivi is a nice, small resort with some great resturants. We, a party of 3, wife & 13 year old son arrived late afternoon. We booked the coach transfer with Cosmos which was only a 15 minute drive including other drop offs. Some of the previous hotels before our drop off did not look the best from the outside, heard a few grunts & moans as people got off. Well the first impression of the Contessina as we approached looked modern & clean (renovated in 2008), the rep as we de-bused even said that we have picked a the best hotel in Tsilivi with a good location so that must tell you something.
The reception was again modern & spotless, Mary was the duty receptionist who made the check-in quick. Don't really agree with the air-con fee (7 euro a day) but apparently this in mostly common practice for most of the hotels on the Greek islands. There is also a charge for the safe and fidge if required. After receiving a glass of orange juice & a few helpful instructions.
The hotel consists of x90 rooms, first impressions of our room (main entrance block on the second floor) was fairly modern, clean but pretty small. We had a double bed, a smaller fold away bed for my son which was fine but I wouldn't be too pleased if there were three adults sharing! We booked the room for three adults as my son is over 12 but the bed was fine for him. The rooms have plenty of storage space, hair dryer, drinking glasses & a large safe which again you have to pay for. I wish that I had brought my laptop as the safe was large, plenty of room for a mid-size laptop plus other items.
The top floor rooms have no flat ceiling incorperating the hotel sloping roof with wooden cladding and wooden beams. The air-con unit worked well but the TV was a old bulky type, not that we really used it but it was fixed to a bracket at a height that was perfect for head banging, especially after a few beers! The shower/toilet wash room was fairly modern, small but fine for the average size person, heard a few moans about the showers from others of the large type, say no more. The top floor rooms to the right of the entrance face an electricity transformer, so not the best view if you like to sit out on the baconey, not an issue for us as we rarely did but you do get the last of the sun plus your towels will be dry for the morning. The pool view rooms are probably the best choice if you can book them!
The swimming pool and surrounding area was kept spotless by the staff/cleaners. The sun loungers were the good metal framed type with decent incline posistions & not the usual plastic rubbish. The hotel rules, they will tell you when you check-in are that you cannot reserve sun beds and not use them for long periods of time otherwise towels will be removed. Some people did but didn't see this happen, wasn't really an issue as there were spare sun beds the majority of days. The hotel also cleans the pool area up until 8 a.m. and place out signage inform that you cannot use the area antill after, again some did with not issues, a very laid back and relaxed hotel.
I had no complaints about breakfast, can't really see a problem as mentioned in some prevoius reviews? A fair selection, cooked or cold, bread, fruit, juice, tea and coffee, all self-service. A nice clean environment to enjoy breakfast in the seated area facing the pool. Breakfast was 8-10, it seemed to be more busy after 9, the staff were really good and will make up a table straight away if busy.
The other hotel facilities such as the bar were good, a nice relaxed environment, price wise a little more expensive then the surrounding bars. A good selection of drink & food. We didn't really use it at night as we spent the later evening at two brothers, Ark, corner cocktail bar & Jolly Roger.
They have wireless & internet (5 euro per hour), louge TV area, pool table (2 euro per game), library, small play ground and currency exchange. The hotel as an whole is kept spotless. Check out was at 11 a.m., they have a room where you can store your luggage.
The reception staff were very helpful with a few problems that Cosmos could not help with after booking in the UK.
The resort was pretty clean with a nice beach, 5 minutes away from the hotel, we used Freddies bar, 6 euros for x2 sunbeds and brolley. The beach at that end is very narrow but more peacefull compared to the wider section 5 mintes further up the beach. Enjoyed the beach, nice shallow, clean water, didn't see any rubbish in the sea. The wider section of beach has all the water sports, jet ski, bannana boat etc. I f you walk in the oposite direction you come to a small harbour,
We visited a number of restaurants, Wine & Roses, il Gusto, Nemesis, Popeye's (not good), Zeus and Menir. All really good apart from Popeye's, slow, slow service. The best, only just, was Wine & Roses, great food and service, a very close second was Gusto's, a great meal if you love pasta. The Jolly Roger (to the right of the hotel from entrance) is the place to go at lunch time or at night if on a budget. Good prices, 2 euro for a large alpha beer. If you like cocktails the corner cocktail bar was good, a massive selection of cocktails at 3 euro. If you like mad bar staff ry two brothers. Also Molley Malones for a couple of Irish nights.
Trips, we didn't go on any as we had planned a week of beach n pool holiday only. But there are many, cheaper to go with one of the local travel companies then Tom Cook etc. Travel Zakynthos (turn left at main road) seemed a good price when we were chatting to one of the German reps ( they are on Trip advisor). Various trps, ship wreck/blue caves, VIP turtle spotting, Olympia and over night stay in Athens. The turtle trip was priced at 14.5 euro each currently at 20% discount Tues/Fri/Sun for a half day, the cheapest that we saw.
Would I return, without a doubt yes, had a wonderful time with end to end sunshine.
But.......... not with Cosmos, a bad service at the UK end or with any other tour operator, we would book direct with the hotel, already done our sums, much cheaper, no need for a rep as we now know what the hotel is like now, better the 3 star!
Hope to return soon & we will.
- Also Known As:
- Contessina Hotel Tsilivi
- Contessina Hotel Zakynthos/Tsilivi
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