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“A traditional Cretan hotel with stunning views and super staff”

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Elounda Water Park Residence
Ranked #20 of 35 Hotels in Elounda
Reviewed November 8, 2013

This is not an ultra modern boutique style hotel. It is a traditional Cretan hotel which stretches up a precipitous hillside and overlooks the stunning bay of Elounde. It offers good value for money. The rooms and apartments vary in quality. Some are rather tired, others are very comfortable. Our two bedroomed villa with plunge pool was excellent! All are in a traditional Cretan style and were spotlessly clean.

All the staff we met were particularly pleasant, friendly and were immensely proud of their island and their workplace - and this was reflected in their brilliant work ethic. The Reception Marias, the two Georges, Manolitas in the bar and the girls in the restaurant were super!

We chose the half board option and we were not disappointed as the food in the restaurant was freshly cooked, well presented and tasty with lots of Cretan/Greek specialities!

The seawater swimming pool has wonderful views and was surrounded by sunbeds and parasols. It may be busy in high season but as we stayed at the end of October we almost had it to ourselves.

The walk to Elounde town down the 'back' road was the highlight of every day - clear blue skies, warm sunshine, exotic plants and bushes all set against a background of rugged mountains made you feel glad to be alive ( - the walk back, at the end of the day, was a little more demanding, but still as enjoyable!) And at the end of the downward walk the pretty harbour town of Elounde with its colourful fishing boats, restaurants, bars and tavernas - a brilliant base for some late summer sunshine!The beach is lovely and safe for children - and the sunbeds and parasols are free of charge out of season! The 10 euro boat trip to Spinalonga is a trip not to be missed!

We shall return!

Room Tip: Choose your room to suit your needs. Speak to the reception staff and they will meet your requireme...
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  • Stayed: October 2013, traveled as a couple
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8  Thank Alan_100_100
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed October 31, 2013

I can only read add to the very recent holidaymakers comments details. Travelled for the first week of October. Had an absolutely fantastic time, attended a German wedding hosted at the Elounda Residence .This was beyond dreams, a cross between Mama Mia and My Big Fat Greek Wedding. The Staff worked their socks off and nothing was too much trouble .
There have been many posts on this site and as I have been before,I believe I am able to review openly and honestly , I strongly recommend this hotel . Please do your own research, it does have steep slopes, and not everyone can be accommodated on Rooms 1-12 ! Though having said this, Mr Yiannis, Roula and the reception Maria's will will try and meet your needs. This is the real Greece, full of character, not swanky. The food is varied, wholesome and plentiful. Great bar and entertainment during the season . A friendliness that is hard to beat.. Will be going again. ..

Room Tip: The lower numbered rooms are easier to access.
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  • Stayed: October 2013, traveled with friends
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5  Thank GlosVoyager
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 28, 2013

Elounda Residence Elounda Crete
We travelled as a couple and stayed in Elounda Residence for 2 weeks, 12-26th October 2013. We chose Crete for mid to late October as we wanted to extend our summer into an autumn holiday with warm seas for swimming, exploring the mountainous countryside and villages and sight seeing (the ancient Minoan settlements) in sunny weather when it was not too hot. It turned out sunny every day.
The coach transfer from Heraklion to Elounda is through great scenery, comfortable, good value (20 euro return) and takes about 2 hours with a chance to see other hotel accommodation. The Residence Hotel Bus takes you up the hill in a few minute and your bags are taken effortlessly to your room. The outside of the Residence is not particularly impressive but once up the stairs there is a magnificent new world. The ground level is spacious with large pool, bar, TV lounge, games room, reception, dining area set in a large open-air terraced crescent, all with absolutely stunning views in a 180 degree sweep over the Bay to mountains beyond. I counted over 200 well-spaced chairs (half with tables) within this sweep to sit in and take advantage of the view with a drink, pc, iPhone, book, camera, or board game, or simply just relax and chat with friends etc. There were at least a dozen different types of seating where individual comfort could be found, which was important for me as will become apparent.
A room tip is to take a room on level 1, in rooms 1 -12, unless you want to do a lot of climbing; the views are not so much better, I went up there. Our room No 1 was fairly basic, not really quite 4* but was so very conveniently situated overlooking the pool with the sweeping views over the Bay to the Causeway, stretching to the ancient sunken Hellenistic town Olous and old windmills to the famous Spinalonga Island with Venetian Castle and former Leper Colony in the distance to the north. This coastal region faces east so wonderful sunrises over sea and distant hills but more restricted sun downers in the town (Elounda) and along the beachfront to Dimotiki Beach.
Hotel food was excellent, Greek style buffet, with such an enticing variety that you could make up almost any type of appetizing dish you wanted, meat, fish, vegetarian. I didn’t see any fussy children there having any problems in piling up their plates. Half board was quite adequate. You would have to check yourself at breakfast if you wanted to feel the need for lunch.
In mid-late October the Hotel did not appear very full. There was a good mix of young and old, and nationalities, French, German, English, Greek. The Hotel was also suitable for families. Staff were always on hand and helpful.
We did well for ourselves with our choice for mid-late October. Midday air temperatures were about 28C; early morning it was cool, about 17C; pool was 21C in the morning but it got to 22C by late afternoon, very refreshing in full sunshine. The sea temperature at Dimotiki Beach was slightly warmer 23C; there were also small fish that could nibble at your legs close in. We hired a car so can report that at Malia Beach (Minoan site) on the north coast the sea temperature was 24C; near Irapetra on the south coast it was still 25C. I swam most days; I brought a wet suit but never used it. There were always showers and changing huts at the public beaches.
If I had taken notice of a few of the reports on the Elounda Residence we would have missed a lot. True it is on a hill but those saying it is unsuitable for older people or those with disabilities need to qualify their remarks which appear to reflect merely their own attitudes. So here is one qualification. I am coming up 74 and cannot go upstairs or downstairs without a rail, or a stick if no rail. I had no problem in enjoying this wonderful setting.
The Bus Shuttle to the town is not really adequate with one service a day and then a kilometre or so walk to the beach/town so we hired a car. I got a rate at 25 euros a day, but we are just out of season. There was no difficulty parking out and about, even disabled parking and toilets in some places. I know the Greek alphabet but as many signs are behind bushes or traffic signals and usually also in English couldn’t use my knowledge to advantage. I soon got used to Crete drivers overtaking as if it was possible to drive through your back seat and I am not a slow driver. We only met one truck on the wrong side of the road on the zigzag mountain side. The car hire tip (for a weak leg) at the Hotel is to park at the upper level and not use the front park and front Hotel entrance which does not have a rail on the first flight of steps. At this upper park level, with Rooms 14-17 (also now suitable), there is only one downward flight of steps (with a rail) to Rooms 1-12.
I liked the chairs on the terrace, some had arms. It would have been helpful if there had been a rail in the bathroom as although I could get in the bath I needed something to hold on to getting out. I noticed all the fittings were a bit loose; it was not me, I had my showers with a stick. A good tip if you travel with easyJet; don’t hide your stick in shame, they will spot it and you go straight to ‘speedy boarding’ with no queuing. I can’t see how else I got there. We loved it. We will be back.

  • Stayed: October 2013, traveled as a couple
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13  Thank robin_pPlymouth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 26, 2013

Be aware that the quickest walk into town is not via the front entrance (which leads you down onto a fairly busy road) but from the back of the hotel, where a 10-15 minute walk takes you straight to the harbour.
The views from the rooms and restaurants are superb, but the staff are the biggest asset.
We went at a less busy time of year. Might be a bit hectic in high season.
Eloundas is not as expensive as the guidebooks say.

  • Stayed: September 2013, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank stevholt
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 25, 2013

When we arrived we were told by the transfer bus driver to "wait here, Mr George will come and get you to take you up to the hotel". Within seconds a minibus turned up with a smiling George who welcomed us to the resort, loaded our cases and us into the minibus and set off up the hill. We were initially astonished at the steepness of the hill and wondered if we had made a huge mistake. However George told us that the minibus goes up and down twice a day to the main road which is right on the edge of the village, so we felt we might manage OK. After taking us to reception to register, he took us to our apartment overlooking the pool AND the wonderful vista of Elounda Bay. We spent the first couple of hours gazing at the view which can only be described as STUNNING! It is well worth the walk up the hill if you don't want to be confined to the minibus times, just to relax in such superb surroundings.

The staff were all absolutely fantastic. I must particularly mention Manolis the barman (who is a valuable mine of local information and suggested some really great trips), Eleni the waitress who is also great on local knowledge, Maria on Reception who makes sure you get everything you request and George not only for all the minibus trips but also for his superb style as head waiter. I know there were one or two others and I am sorry that I did not note their names as they also deserve a mention. Nothing was too much trouble for any member of staff. They genuinely wanted you to enjoy your holiday. They knew our names within the first couple of days and were happy to chat when we wanted or keep a respectful distance when we didn't - completely professional.

My friend and I had a two bedroomed apartment on the side overlooking the pool but also with fantastic views of the bay. Breakfast and dinner were in the dining room that stretches along the front of the hotel giving equally fantastic views of the bay. The rooms were a little small with basic cooking facilities but VERY clean. The bathroom was very clean and functional and towels were changed almost daily. I loved the shutters on the windows - one of the little quirks that gives this hotel its character! We had a little balcony which was more than adequate for the two of us and could easily have seated four if our party had been bigger. In hindsight I think I would have preferred a one bedroomed apartment with one of us sleeping on the setee as I think we might have had slightly more space, however we were only in the apartment to sleep and to change for dinner so it was not an issue for us and I woudl willingly stay in the same room again under the same circumstances.

The food was great, with plenty of choice at all meals. A good mixture of traditional Greek/Cretan cuisine. The bread alone is worth a special mention - absolutely fresh and very tasty! A particularly nice touch at breakfast time is that guests are left completely alone to enjoy their food from the self-service gondolas. A single member of staff replenishes the food as needed and is on hand if you do request anything,, otherwise you just fetch what you want and enjoy the peace and quiet. No-one is snatching your pate as soon as you put your knife down and there is no pressure to finish and go. Dinner is equally relaxed but with a couple more staff.

If you love great views this accommodation is a must! However if you don't like quirkiness and fantastic home cooking with great service and very friendly staff, go to one of the big, characterless hotels down in the bay but you will also sacrifice the view and be further out of the village (and we noted that they were already closed by the third week in October).

I am going back in May if possible, with my partner who has some mobility problems but I am sure these will be catered for by choosing the right room. I don't think you could find a better place to stay in Elounda and I am sure I will be back many times in years to come.

Room Tip: If you have any mobility problems, let the staff know when you book so that they can put you in the...
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  • Stayed: October 2013, traveled with friends
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5  Thank pinguicula
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 21, 2013

Just returned from another great holiday at Elounda Residence the views of Elounda are spectacular. The staff were very friendly and helpfull nothing was to much fort hem to do for you.
Will definitely be going back. Been going to Elounda now for 15 years and Elounda Residence is our favourite place to stay. Elounda Residence is located up a hill a bus runs daily from the hotel to Elounda and returns later that day to take you back. We enjoy the walk as the views are spectacular.

  • Stayed: October 2013, traveled with family
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4  Thank lloyd s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 16, 2013

Everything about the holiday was great this is our third holiday at elounda residence and we will be going back next year. Thank you to all staff and maria on reception you all made us feel so welcome. See you all next year.

  • Stayed: October 2013
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3  Thank chloenoah
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Elounda Water Park Residence

Address: Elounda, Crete 72053, Greece (Formerly Elounda Residence)
Location: Greece > Crete > Lasithi Prefecture > Elounda
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#9 Family Hotel in Elounda
#14 Luxury Hotel in Elounda
Price Range: $58 - $140 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Elounda Water Park Residence 4*
Number of rooms: 60
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Overlooking the surrounding mountains and the sea, Elounda Residence offers self-catered accommodation. Its public areas offer free Wi-Fi and include a large pool with hydromassage jets, 2 restaurants and a tavern with live music.The complex consists of spacious apartments with seating room, and fully furnished villas with private pool. All rooms are air-conditioned and have a balcony with sea view.The restaurant serves a daily breakfast and dinner buffet. Taverna serves a variety of Greek dishes for lunch and dinner. Drinks are available at the main bar and pool bar. Children’s menus are available.Elounda Residence features a computer room and a games room. Sports and leisure facilities include a tennis court, mini golf, table tennis and table football. There is also a separate pool for children, and 3 playgrounds.The hotel offers free shuttle service to the village and harbour of Elounda, where you will find wonderful beaches, local stores and frequent boats' departures to the famous Spinalonga island. Free private on-site parking is available. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Elounda Residence Hotel
Elounda Water Park Residence Crete

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