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“Wonderful hotel”

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St. Nicolas Bay Resort Hotel & Villas
Ranked #1 of 100 Hotels in Agios Nikolaos
Certificate of Excellence
niedergoesgen
Level Contributor
10 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Wonderful hotel”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 6, 2013

We stayed the third time in this beautiful Hotel. We had the same lovely Junior Suite as last year.
The Food is in all Restaurants very delicous. The variety at the buffet is high, in the morning and in the evening. The Hotel staff is very friendly, from the server to the Hotel Manager.They remembered us from last year and did all what we liked to do. Exremely friendly are the ladies in the Spa.The massages are absolutely great with the appropriate oils and techniques. The most beautiful room is upstairs with an Elevator bringing you at the top. The view from there is gorgeous. You should take a Picture from there. The sea is good for Swimming and entering through a Little sandy beach. We were always lying on the Stone terraces from where the view is magnificent.

Room Tip: Junior Suite
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
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Thank rolf m
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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968 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (158)
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UK
Level Contributor
38 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 4, 2013

Excellent welcoming check in, escort to room and bubbles and cookies to get the holiday started. We took a basic room but were really content with it, perfectly big enough and everything you need - apart from tea and coffee facilities. Take a kettle, it's not a massive hardship. We had a lovely view through the gardens to the sea and the herbaceous borders mean you see birds and butterflies when you are sitting on your balcony - lovely.
Room was cleaned above and beyond, we were tidied up and learned to put things away ourselves;)
The only real problem with the room was the shower which leaked quite spectacularly out of the bathroom and into the bedroom the first time it was used. No point complaining, it's not something that could be fixed short term and we subsequently ensured the shower ran well into the bath area and devised a dam, using a towel on the side of the bath.
Breakfast is more than adequate, if you want a proper full English, don't go to the med- simple. The yoghurt was lovely and you will never taste honey like this out of a jar. We used our half board option on the first night and it was ok. They were happy for us to exchange dinner for lunch on the occasion we requested it. The rest of the time we used the excellent taxi service into Ag Nik in the evening. If we went back we would do the same, we like to get out in the evening and try whatever is on offer. The town seemed to be thronging with people but not many in the bars and restaurants - end of season? Both food and service in town is mixed but everyone is really friendly, even when they mess up!
Really liked the sunbathing platforms along the rocky side of the cove. There are excellent swimming and snorkelling opportunities for the experienced and the not so.
As others have said, it's easy to get out and about, buses, taxis, easy.
Finally, after many years of travelling, I'm becoming tired of the increasing culture of different and confusing room categories in hotels and the inevitable extras that go along with them. I don't have time to wade through them all anymore and if I pay a price I expect to be able to enjoy all of the facilities of the hotel. In this establishment, I felt we got that. Well done everyone!

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank MxUK01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
29 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 2, 2013

We stayed in a standard sea view room for 9 nights. I was very impressed with the hotel. We arrived at 2am and were greeted warmly, checked in efficiently and taken to our room. The room was as I had expected having read reviews and seen pictures. We were in a ground floor room so the view was limited but having said that our terrace was very private and we loved it. I would ask for a 1st or 2nd floor room if staying again. The room as very clean and spacious. The only disappointment was the shower over bath with a shower curtain, as others have also mentioned. But a minor point.

The hotel facilities were great. The pool was lovely and especially at about 630pm when I did my daily lengths there was no one else around, the sun was low and the view from the infinity part of the pool was lovely. We also loved the private beach. As others have said there is no rush to save a lounger and towels were provided at the pool/ beach.

The breakfast was ok/good. I have had better but the outside setting was fab. Things that would have made the hotel perfect are more choice of snacks during the day. Having had large breakfast and knowing eating out is the main activity once the sun has gone down I didn't want a large meal during the day which even the club sandwiches etc turned out to be. Also loud music at the beachside bar was an issue. In the evenings the area near the beach is turned into an outdoor bar. The harbour walls have lights set in them and the tables have candles. It was idilic but we didn't stay for a drink because of the blaring music. We couldn't hear each other speak and it spoiled the atmosphere. In fact we never stayed at the hotel in the evening more because of a lack of atmosphere than anything else. Don't get me wrong I am no night clubber and I like things quiet but there was just a little something missing. However we were so close to agios nicolas it was not an issue. Just ask at reception and 2 minutes later a taxi arrives for a set fee of 6 euro.

So there are a few small things that would have made it absolutely perfect but it was almost perfect without them. Great location, lovely hotel and great service.

A wonderful hotel that I would recommend without hesitation. This is high praise indeed for someone as fussy as me.

Room Tip: Ask for a first or second floor room for a better sea view. Ask for a room with a separate shower cu...
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank suepem
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Manchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 29, 2013

We are currently enjoying a 14 night holiday at the St. Nicholas Bay Resort Hotel and from the minute we arrived, the management and staff at the hotel could not do enough to ensure that all the necessary pieces which make a great holiday were present.
The food is fresh and extremely creatively presented with a choice of formal waiter menu an or a buffet selection. Breakfast is to die for and the staff really do work hard to ensure that personal touch adds to the experience.
As someone who heads up the Quality Management for a National Plc in the UK, I can honestly state that this hotel not only meets the expectations of the customers, but exceeds those expectations on a daily basis.

Keep up the good work.

Room Tip: All the rooms are extremely well appointed with maid service two times per day. The design of the ho...
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Safetymaniac
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reading, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 27, 2013 via mobile

Currently enjoying an amazing holiday at St Nicolas Bay Resort.  Taken the B&B option because we like to try different places to eat out, which has been mixed so far.  The town, a 30 minute brisk walk away mostly along the stunning coast, makes for a bustling holiday resort.  It's not historic as such but is quirky, hilly and interesting to explore nonetheless with a craggy, beach dotted seafront.

The hotel is lovely, designed like a hillside village with a winding cobbled path linking the individual rooms/suites like they are separate dwellings.  There are steps, arches, bridges and winding garden paths linking the accommodation giving it the feel that it's not a hotel at all.  Each room has private access from the path outside.  There is nothing claustrophobic about this hotel as it plunges down the hill towards the infinity pool, then to the bar terrace, and culminating in the small mostly sandy little beach cove with sun lounger quayside and rocky terraces with sunbeds.  At the top of the hill, above the accommodation is another bar, restaurant and pool with views towards the water inlet on the landward side.  It is very tranquil here with no guests at all when I visited.

Visiting at the end of September the place has plenty of guests but there is no competition to reserve a sun lounger, no problem sitting where you want to eat, and no queues at the bar.  Some reviews speak of the lack of atmosphere at night and it's true that there is no party going on but the peace and solitude only help add to the exclusivity for me.  You can sit and have a drink, listening to the sea with the atmospheric lanterns providing the only light and feel like you are the only person on Crete.  Personally, I find that special, but understand that others want some human connection.  That said, without exception there is no one here that looks like they want a heavy session but at the same time it's not a retirement home either.

On arrival, late at 10:30pm (transfers on holiday coaches take 2 hours this time of year), we were personally greeted and shown to our room with luggage to follow.  All aspects of the room were introduced and then we were asked if we wanted to eat.  There are no facilities at the airport and hadn't eaten on the plane so we were happy to be taken to the open air restaurant atmospherically lit near the sea.  The meals are about EUR15, cooked to perfection and with plenty to fill the stomach.  Service was impeccable.  Travelling in shirts and t-shirt I felt somewhat underdressed but I was reassured it would be ok.  Later I read that fitted shorts (not Bermuda styled) are acceptable, so I was fortunately OK.

The suite (one less than the ones with private pools) is stunning.  Room 231 for reference.  Winding through a stone walkway then up some stairs and then back down, you arrive at the accommodation that is set to the side of the hotel pool with views across the sea to the distant mountains.  The accommodation in front, beyond the footpath, obscures the immediate sea view but takes nothing away from the proposition.  Inside, a large living room area with sofa (more showy than comfortable), large flat screen TV, DVD player (100s of DVDs available to use) and mini bar.  The minibar is a fridge that you can use to put your own items in too.  Outside is a very large terrace (on the first floor) with table and chairs.  There is only one floor above but set back.  A dressing area connects this with the bathroom complete with jacuzzi bath and double height ceiling.  This leads to the bedroom with twin single beds, a dressing table and another TV.  From here is an en-suite with toilet, basin and walk in two person shower which has both a fixed and movable shower head.  Outside there is a connecting balcony with two sun loungers.  All furniture is impeccable.  Soft furnishings, including bedding, pristine.

I've seen another review that mentions there is no where to dry towels.  This is true.  I hang mine over the shower door and they dry by the morning.  Only in the bathroom is there a place to dry anything and that's suitable for swimming shorts and the like.  However, the key point is that the towels are replaced every day anyway.  I even tried drying mine in the wardrobe on a coat hanger the first night and it was gone and replaced when I returned.  I liked the touch.  There are bath robes, floor towels, hand towels and complimentary slippers too.  The shower tends to splash outside the door a little so one of the the floor towels is useful there.  This suite has no shower curtain, it's a jacuzzi bath and a separate shower in the en suite.  The decor is tasteful and clean. The soft furnishings look new and no sign of wear.  No mouldy ceilings, no cobwebs, no insect life!

After the first night I was concerned that one of the patio doors did not lock.  The following morning I mentioned it and by the time I returned it was fixed.  I think this says a lot about the hotel.  Places cannot always be perfect, but what sets them apart is how they respond to your feedback. Rather than complain about it retrospectively you should mention it upfront.  This is a hotel that takes guests' requests seriously.  I'll be honest, I didn't expect it to be sorted when I asked but it was taken care of with no fuss whatsoever.  I made a point of thanking the staff member after and I was made to feel that it was an embarrassment it wasn't perfect to start with.

The staff are amazing.  They know this is your special time and they want to give you the best experience of their home.  They are all local.  Breakfast is an absolute pleasure.  The routine is, find a table made up ready and sit there.  Wait for the waiter who will very shortly acknowledge your presence.  Greet with 'Good Morning' in local tongue and then ask for a pot of tea or coffee (the coffee tastes great) per person, freshly squeezed orange juice (yes, fresh), whether you want toast or not (the butter is hard to find but is in the buffet) and then your choice of eggs if you want.  There is a printed menu for the eggs or full English if you want it.  This takes about 4 minutes to arrive.  I have been waiting these 4 minutes because the juice and then the coffee arrives before the hot food.  Inside (breakfast is served under the trees by the pool - I know, idyllic) there is cereal, jams, juices, pastries for days (hot and cold), about a dozen hot options of flans and meats, cold meats and cheeses, and lovely fresh fruits.  The red grapes have seeds which is a surprise to the system but the green are without and sweeter than you can imagine based on the usual Sainsburys offering back in England.  Lots of melon, apple and kiwis like you've never had from the supermarket at home.  Breakfast isn't just something to eat after sleeping, it becomes a focal point of the day.

In the evening there is a turning down service which includes a tidy up, and if you are in you can request anything else you require.

The location of the hotel is a brisk 30 minute walk along the coast to the town centre.  It's a pretty walk with plenty to see.  There are restaurants and beach stores along the way.  I prefer to have a walk to get to the centre of activity because it's an excuse to exercise.  If you like to be active then this will not be daunting at all, it's virtually all totally flat.  The town itself is a bustling resort.  Two main shopping streets mostly geared to tourism with several other streets devoted to beach shops, bars/restaurants and lots of interesting back streets offering real life.  Like I said before, it's not historic but it certainly doesn't feel like a mass tourism resort of the 70s either.  Built on steep hills with curiously slippery streets and steps that morph into mega 50cm ascents in places it is certainly quirky and would be challenging for less abled and impossible for the wheelchair bound unless sticking to the seafront roads - even the drop kerbs need a forklift truck to help get you up.  Despite the hotel being quiet, the town of Ag Nik definitely isn't.  Avoid the obvious touristy places around the harbour if you hate being ripped off.  A slush lemon and a mocha ice drink costing 8EUR is more than you'd pay at home.  Just wander back a little and realism sets in.

On the main road outside the hotel (5 minute walk max) there are busses to Elounda and Ag Nik (frequently) and Plaka (every 2 hours).  Enter the bus by any available door and pay onboard.  There are conductors and they speak good English.  There are not return tickets as such, a return is two singles.  Most journeys are about 1.3EUR  Elounda or Ag Nik.  If you crave the most perfect beach then walk to the bus station in Ag Nik (it's this side of town) and catch the 101 to Istron (usually leaves at quarter past the hour).  For 3.20EUR return you get to Voulisma Beach which is sandy, turquoise and pretty much unspoiled.  There are facilities behind the beach if you want food, drink, or limited shops.  The bus drops you 3 minutes from the beach.  I'd recommend it.  Absolutely beautiful.

Eating out has been mixed.  First tried Sarris in the centre of town.  With tables in the street, battered vans parked adjacent and local cats running around it felt more like the Gaza Strip than the EU but the homemade cooking was superb.  It was a surreal experience of going back in time combined with living on the street.  Can't fault the food if you can excuse the primitive surrounds and serving.  On the other hand, also ate at Knossos which is near the hotel and gets blindingly good reviews on Tripadvisor.  We went for Mezze 8 and despite the utterly charming service from both son and father, every single dish was intensely salty beyond belief and if oil was added there was too much of it.  If you enjoy salty and oily food then I recommend this place because otherwise the food was fine.  There was a complimentary dessert of chocolate cake with banana ice cream but it felt quite cheap and didn't plug the gap in what I was expecting.  Separately, George's right at the top of the cliff at the pool in the town centre was great.  He plasters you with nibbles and although service is slightly slow the attentiveness and offering is great.  It's slightly dubious that he asks you to recommend him on TripAdvisor and sign the book he maintains but actually there is nothing about this place that makes me want to score him negatively.  Great view (if you climb up there), nice selection of nuts and pretzels for free, good service and drinks are carefully prepared with plenty of theatre.

Just to finish off with the hotel.  The gym has only 9 pieces of equipment with some Reebok steps and free weights (up to 12 kg dumbbells) as well.  There are 3 treadmills (2 are currently broken), 1 stepper and 1 bike.  There is a seated rower, a chest fly (currently broken) and a quad machine.  There is a seated lat pull too.  There is no opportunity to lift heavy weights.  The complimentary parts of the spa include saunas and steam rooms, bookable to avoid overcrowding.  This time of year you can book as you are ready to use.  The separate indoor pool and jacuzzi require the massage packages which are quite pricey.  For exercise buffs the gym will not suffice, but that's not entirely unusual with hotels in my experience.

So, overall, I am very impressed with this hotel and its location.  The staff will do anything to help.  It's set in a picturesque stretch of coastline with no development in view and a 30 minute brisk walk to the main town.  Catching a bus is simple, just 5 minutes walk.  I feel like I live here, not just staying.  The food is top class, whether breakfast buffet or from the restaurant in the evening (haven't tried the buffet evening meals yet although can pay separately for them at EUR35).  Wi-fi hasn't been an issue anywhere I've tried to connect, there are a multitude of bases to connect to around the resort and they all work with a decent speed with which I am accustomed.  I really cannot fault the place, but if you do have reason to complain I recommend that you do because the staff are incredibly attentive and helpful.  A well-deserved 5/5 score from me, oh, and in case you wonder what late September is like in Crete....it's been dry, about 28 to 30C, and has clouded over at about 4pm for 2 of the 4 days I've been here.  Otherwise, wall to wall unrelenting sunshine.  :-)  What more could you want?!

Stayed September 2013
Helpful?
5 Thank Oldrieve
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gidea Park
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 27, 2013

Just returned from our 3rd visit to the St. Nicholas Bay Resort Hotel, this time we spent 10 days reading and relaxing in the sun on comfortable sun-beds with good shade, swimming in warm seas, eating good Greek food served by excellent staff. This is the perfect hotel for relaxation just 4 hours from the UK, can't wait till next year for my next visit.

Room Tip: Contact the hotel direct, tell them your requirements, they will give good information
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank David T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
12 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 26, 2013

It was the second time that I stayed in this wonderful hotel, and, again, I felt very happy there. This time a shared a bungalow-style 'house' (two bedrooms, two bathrooms, lounge, terrace and good-sized private pool) right by the sea and it was wonderful to fall asleep and wake up to the sound of the waves. The staff was, as always, very friendly and helpful and so was the delightful manager of this luxury hotel. He greets every arriving guest personally and shows them to their room. I met some travellers I knew from last year, and it felt like coming home, and I made great new friends. Interesting people go to this resort. Some of the restaurants in Agios Nikolaos are fantastic, and Elounda is not far away either. I had a great time and a beautiful experience and I'm looking forward to my next stay.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Petra488
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about St. Nicolas Bay Resort Hotel & Villas

Property: St. Nicolas Bay Resort Hotel & Villas
Address: Thessi Nissi 10, Agios Nikolaos, Crete 721 00, Greece
Phone Number:
Location: Greece > Crete > Lasithi Prefecture > Agios Nikolaos
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Agios Nikolaos
#1 Luxury Hotel in Agios Nikolaos
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Agios Nikolaos
#1 Spa Hotel in Agios Nikolaos
#2 Family Hotel in Agios Nikolaos
#4 Romantic Hotel in Agios Nikolaos
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:5 star — St. Nicolas Bay Resort Hotel & Villas 5*
Number of rooms: 107
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A spacious Balcony or Terrace in each Room or Suite provides a private and secluded open air lounge to sit and relax with great sea views.- From the secluded privacy of your room balcony / terrace only 2 minutes walk through flower scented gardens to reach the private sandy beach and sunbathing terraces. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Saint Nicolas Bay Resort Hotel And Villas
Saint Nicolas Bay Hotel
St. Nicolas Bay Resort Hotel & Villas Crete/Agios Nikolaos

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