We stayed at Porto Elounda for a week in Sep’13 with our 5-month baby.
We holidayed in Crete for the fifth time now and stayed in top five star hotels in Elounda twice. So going to Porto Elounda we can make an objective comparison to similar hotels in the area.
I start with the positives:
- Excellent beach. Comfortable and generous layout, plenty of sunbeds in shades and under the sun, beautiful turquoise waters and it is a pleasure to swim in them. I have not seen such water in other hotels in Crete. Sandy and shallow shore is perfect for children;
- The hotel has a lot of green land shaft on the beach and for golf and it makes it a nice contrast to the dry land;
- Room service is very good and the hotel is spotless throughout;
- Breakfast and dinner buffet are excellent. There is a plenty of choice for every taste and the food is fresh and tasty. At dinner buffet in particular there are very tasteful options to try. To note that hese are mass produced foods so do not expect a gourmet experience. There are a la carte restaurants for this such as Italian Aglio Oleo or the Deck.
- The main is the cost of the food for lunch. The hotel cleverly set up the catering scheme offering dinner buffet as the half board option and EUR 20 p/p voucher to swap it for lunch. This traps the guests to spend a lot of money to lunch as there is nowhere to go within the walking distance. There is only one option for lunch at the beach Greek restaurant Odysseus. The restaurant is overpriced and EUR 20.00 will not even cover the cost of one main course lunch drinks are excluded (bottle of water is 5.80 EUR).
Souvlaki dish (one stick of chicken pieces, chips, pita and some tomatoes) is EUR 21.00
Two pieces of grilled chicken breast with the bowl of rice and salad leaves is EUR 22.00
Chicken salad (similar to Caesar salad) EUR 18.00
Greek salad EUR 15.00. These are the cheapest dishes. Most main courses range 21-40 EUR and starters 12-20 EUR.
The average price for a Greek salad in tavernas is 5-6 EUR and 8-9 for souvlaki. If the hotel charges three times more it has to exceed either in quality or quantity. Otherwise it is a rip off and taking advantage of their captive clients on the beach which is what the hotel does.
The hotel needs to offer more lunch options either at the beach bar at the cheaper prices or review the menu cost at the Odysseus.
Having read the other reviews the cost of catering seems to be the feedback throughout.
When we stayed at the other 5-star hotel at Elounda and paid similar prices the dishes were notably tastier and plentiful!
I also felt that the waiters at the restaurants (dinner as well) are well trained to discreetly offer you the more expensive drinks (not a feature of the known Greek hospitality). At Aglio Oleo they offered us a glass Proseco to start with before even showing us the menu. Then we saw in the bill EUR 10.00 for each glass. At the Desk we asked for a house rose wine (EUR 7.00) and they quietly offered a branded wine at EUR 10.00 instead.
At the receiption I asked a guy (his name Anastasious) about the nearby taverna and he diverted my request to the hotel restaurants. When asked again he reluctantly and vaguely explained the location ....
Like one American reviewer said if they could charge for air they would. So please ask for the menu first and be clear what drinks you order.
I agree with the user bislandgirl from Turkey on the cost of food however not with the manager Elias who responded. The cost EUR 7.00 for a glass of house wine and not a branded wine! The branded wine starts at EUR.10.00. The dishes at a la carte restaurants do not start with EUR 5 and EUR 16 but around 15-25 for starts and 25-40 for a main course. We did not dine at any of them purely based on the cost of the dishes.
A couple of small points:
Sunbeds have metal frames and very uncomfortable metal handles so one cannot sit on these lounges but only lie. I badly hurt my foot on this bed trying to reach to my baby.
The free Wi-Fi in the lobby is not reliable and often you cannot connect. The hotel receiption had to restart the router several times when asked to restore the connection. The frustration as that the receiptionist said that it is a "known problem with Apple I-phones" - a note to the hotel that Apple works fine and it is a problem with the Porto Internet network. I found this quite frustrating.
A final general comment is that the hotel is primarily for families and if some couples do not like “little darlings” they should stay away from this hotel. The children’s’ noise is everywhere – on the beach, at the breakfast, at the reception etc. Having travelled as a couple to Crete for four years I personally would not come to this hotel as a couple. However as a family it is a different matter.
Finally, I would recommend this hotel to the families or adults who do not mind having children running around the beach. However with the knowledge that they will have to pay for overpriced very average quality lunch.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The only golf-and-spa resort on Crete is a whole world on its own, with the "World's Best Spa" according to the Sunday Times' "Travel" magazine 2007. Rooms and suites all have panoramic views of the bay of Elounda over the green expanse of the golf course's 9 holes. Children are particularly well catered for, with a dedicated facility offering indoor and outdoor play areas, a lawn-laid olive-grove, a water-park and a sports field. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Expedia, Booking.com, Prestigia, Hotels.com, Hotwire, Travelocity, Cancelon, Orbitz, HotelQuickly and TripOnline SA so you can book your Porto Elounda Golf & Spa Resort reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
- Also Known As:
- Porto Elounda Deluxe Hotel Elounda
- Porto Elounda Golf & Spa Resort Crete