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“It's quality, not quantity here!”

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Aquila Porto Rethymno
Ranked #9 of 177 Hotels in Rethymnon
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed July 8, 2013

My husband and I stayed here for 11 nights all inclusive in June, with Thomson. We paid an extra £22 for a sea view room, which we felt was well worth it, as the alternative would have been a view of the road to the side or back of the hotel - there are no gardens or grounds. Our room was clean and comfortable, although the beds were a bit hard for our liking and the balcony was on the small side. Not huge issues though. There were some nice extras such as bottled water, wine and chocolates on arrival, robes and slippers, nice toiletries, tea and coffee making facilities, mini bar and a free safe.

This is the first all inclusive I have stayed in where you don't get a wristband. Instead you are issued with a credit card sized pass, which you are supposed to show when ordering food and drinks. We were never asked for it though, instead you are asked for your room number (from which they know what board basis you are on) and asked to sign a receipt for whatever you've had. This is apparently to avoid abuse of the system, as you are strongly encouraged to check your receipt and report it if you've been asked to sign for anything you didn't have!

As others have said, getting your moneys worth on all inclusive can prove difficult here! There is no pool or beach bar. There is a drinks service on the beach (non alcoholic only) but you have to pay, even on AI. There is waiter service for drinks at the pools, but you often had to go looking for someone........which involved getting dressed (no swimwear or bare feet allowed indoors), then waiting again for your drinks to be brought out. Very slow and frustrating at times. That said, when you did manage to get a drink, they were very good. Quality brands were included in the AI, the wine was surprisingly good, and a good choice of cocktails, all beautifully presented.

The food was also very good, particularly breakfast. There was even champagne breakfast with smoked salmon twice a week, not to mention the fresh orange juice, and smoothies and waffles made in front of you while you wait. Dinner was a choice of 3 main dishes from the menu (always one vegetarian) or you could just choose from the buffet if you didn't fancy the menu items. There was lots of variation and everything was hot and cooked well. The only let down, again was the drinks service in the restaurant. Staff take your drinks order when you are seated but it can be some time before you are served. On one occasion we had finished our main course before our drinks arrived. If you did get served quickly, getting a second drink was near impossible, so I took to ordering a whole bottle of wine with dinner even though I only wanted a couple of glasses.

We missed the Gala dinner due to being late back from an excursion, but we did eat in the A la Carte restaurant once. It was very good, although only limited menu choices were available on AI. The café bar Anatolitiko at the front of the hotel was a lovely place to relax with a drink or snack and watch the world go by, much better service here than in the lobby bar, particularly from the lovely Dimitra, who always had time for a smile and a chat, despite working so hard running around in the heat!

This is definitely more of a beach hotel than a pool hotel. The beach is fantastic and the hotel certainly occupies the nicest part of it. Loungers and parasols were free and there was never a problem finding one at any time of day. Beach towels were provided too, which you could change whenever you liked, and there are showers and changing cubicles on the beach. By contrast the pools were small and in shade for a large part of the day. They were a nice temperature though, and never crowded.

There was very little in the way of evening entertainment here, but we didn't come for that so it didn't bother us. The hotel is so close to all Rethymnon has to offer that it isn't necessary. All in all, this is a good quality hotel, the staff do everything to a high standard, but some of them just need to do it quicker!

Room Tip: Worth the extra for a sea view.
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  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank Suzanne H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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632 - 638 of 1,230 reviews

Reviewed July 7, 2013

We stayed at this hotel 20th June-4th July, we stayed on an all Inclusive basis and pre booked a sea view deluxe room which I would recommend, we received a verity of extra benefits including bottled water, newspaper, fresh fruit and flowers. The room it's self was large and very light, having
a duel aspect. The TV had only the usual news stations, the only negative thing about the room was the carpet, it should either be cleaned or replaced.
The food at the Porto Rethymno is exceptional lots of good quality options in both restaurants and all staff both in the restaurants and the bars are very friendly.
The swimming pools are good even if a little on the small side. The hotel occupies a small footprint
but makes good use of the available space over six floors. Overall we had a very good holiday but I feel to be perfectly honest I must mention our disappointment in the all Inclusive option and I would say this hotel dose not offer a true all Inclusive in the sense that there is still a lot you have to pay for. Even though feel we had paid enough that all should have been included. Some examples of what's not included a cappachino when a filter coffee is! Sparkling water not included, soda water is! only the house wine is free if that's not to your taste then you pay for what is.
In the A la carte restaurant only certain meals are included most are at extra cost and wine is to be paid for! On a plus side the Gala Dinner is a five course meal and it very nice you only pay for the wine!
All in all I would say this hotel must get a handle on the A I or they will not get return guests on this option, but I feel it's a halfhearted attempt for those who prefer this option.

I

Room Tip: Chose a larger room if you can, it's worth it!
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  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank vikingwife
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 5, 2013

Spent two great weeks here last month. It was our second visit and we loved it as much as last time. The food is fantastic with plenty of choice and the staff are all a credit to the hotel. Yes I agree our room (which wasn't one of the superior rooms) was a bit tired but it was always clean and a small issue of a broken bulb was reported by the cleaner and fixed before we even had a chance to mention it. The hotel is in a brilliant position with its own area on the beach and just a short walk into town. We didn't stay around for the evening entertainment as Rethymnon has too much to offer. Heres to the next visit.

  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Lesley07WiltshireUK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 5, 2013

I have just returned from the Porto Rethymno Hotel and would not recommend the All inclusive option - save the additional cost, take it with you and choose what you want to make your holiday!

Firstly - you can only have one drink with any meal or pay additional cost, (you couldn't have a leisurely meal with a couple of glasses of wine followed my a liqueur or coffee) after eating you would have to move to the "captains corner" for additional drinks. Anything that you ordered (food or beverage) had to be eaten where you ordered it - no taking a drink to the beach or to sip on the balcony of your room watching the world go by!
Beach service - you are not entitled (unless you pay again).
Lunch has to be taken in the main buffet restaurant - so off the sun lounger, wash the sand off, get dressed, dice with death across the main road for another three course meal (often what was on the buffet at lunch then appeared at dinner). If you were going out for the day - no packed lunch (unless you pay for it).
Drink selection - a few branded drinks, one lager, 5 cocktails, coke, fruit juice, wine by the glass (not very good wine at that). The cost of the cocktails to non a/I guests are all charged at the same price - but you will only be entitled to a selection of 5! Don't ask for a Cuba Libra as this is chargeable but ask for a white rum and a bottle of coke - mix your own and its free !
I could go on but I think you have got the message - a drinkable bottle of wine in the supermakets start at about €5 and wine glasses and corkscrew are in the rooms anyway.
Lots of local supermarkets, bakeries, and tevernas so you really wont go hungry.
One thing on the a/I was the gala dinner - this was fantastic 5 courses of superb food, a nice privilege!

Welcome on arrival was aweful as we were being hidden from guests who were being turned away due to the hotels over booking policy! So not only were the guests sent away unhappy but so were the guests who were lucky enough to have rooms!

Rooms - tired. A vintage CD player takes up a large space on the dressing table. Air con noisy. Toilet that when flushed kept getting stuck and continually refilled.

Safe - yes its free, but it is also very small, I don't think an iPad would fit in it.

I think that this hotel should be renamed Marmite - you will either love it or hate it.
Sorry not one that I would return to.

Room Tip: Sea view minimum - some rooms without have side road views or very tiny balconies overlooking a bric...
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  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank KESJTS
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RithymnaBeach, Marketing Coordinator at Aquila Porto Rethymno, responded to this reviewResponded September 20, 2013

Dear Guest,

First of all we would like to thank you for having selected our hotel to spend your summer holidays.
We have read very carefully your review and have respectfully noted all your comments. Further to this, we feel that an appropriate answer should be given, although we were at your disposal at any time to hear your suggestions and resolve any matter may had occurred during your stay.

We are very pleased that you have enjoyed our Gala dinner, but concerned that in general it seems like you have not experienced a pleasant Premium All Inclusive package.
All our all- inclusive guests upon arrival are given from reception their all-in ID card, together with an information sheet with all the details about their package. There is mentioned clearly that “all kinds of food & drinks should be consumed only in the departments that are been ordered” , as well as that the consumption of the all-in drinks indicated in the catalogs of our Food & Beverage departments is unlimited (during their operating hours) and in no case payable. Also, beverages not included in the all-in list are considered special labels and are available at an additional charge . Kindly note that for the all-inclusive guests a 35% discount is made on all spirits served in the Main Restaurant (Premium All Inclusive brands included) except during breakfast when no alcoholic drinks are served.

Concerning any problem occurring in the room, our Maintenance or Housekeeping department instantly restores it as soon as it is reported at the reception. In case guest is still not satisfied we always offer the option of a room change.

In closing, we are really sorry that you felt concerned or dissatisfied during your stay with us and we do sincerely hope that perhaps sometime in the not too distant future you may once again consider returning to our hotel and thus give us the opportunity to offer you the pleasant holiday that meets with your expectations.



Mr. Kostas Damanakis
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 30, 2013

We travelled with Thomson's to this hotel in June, overall it is a good hotel in an excellent location. Our arrival was a little strange as we were met at the coach by someone who gave us our room key and showed us to the lift , which was about the extent of the welcome.
We were on the 6th floor with a balcony and sea view , the room was fine although looking a little tired. Our biggest issue was with the air conditioning , apparently this is only switched on between 5pm and 3am and then not very effective. We have stayed in a lot of hotels in Greece but never had the air con rationed. When we stayed the temperature was 30c most days , our room was unusable during the day and very uncomfortable first thing in the morning. If you want air con on demand don't stay at this hotel. Apparently this only applies to the bed rooms not the common areas of the hotel which were always very comfortable.
The restaurant in this hotel is too small for the number of guests, in the evening it is very busy and we felt rushed, also the tables are too close together, we were generally in and out in 45 minutes.The food is good , but not memorable . In our opinion it is very pretentious , with the staff pretending to be serving at the Ritz and the buffet food no better than an upmarket canteen. Drinks were really expensive.
It is possible to swap the evening meal for lunch in al a carte restaurant , this we did a couple of times.
Best bit of the hotel is the beach just across the road, free sunbeds and towels you can change every day, gently shelving beach and very clean water.
If we stayed here again it would be on a B&B basis as there are loads of super restaurants just a short walk away in the old town of Rethymon, which is really pretty with loads of retail opportunities .
So best bits, location, beach, very helpful staff.
Worst bits , Food, air con , prices of drinks
This Hotel is billed as 5 star. this only applies to the prices.

Room Tip: Stay B&B and try the fantastic taverners in Rethymon in the evening.
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  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank MKHud
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 30, 2013

This hotel really needs to upgrade the bed rooms, we paid for 4/5star accommodation and did not receive this until we moved rooms on our last day, because we had a late check out. Food was excellent and the a LA carte restaurant was exceptional. The staff worked very hard at making everyone's holiday a great experience. The beach was very nice but unless you got up at 6am to bag a sun bed you had to be satisfied with a rear end sun bed. The towels were well sun tanned as people did not appear at the beds until after 10am after bagging the best beds. The pool beside the restaurant was very nice and never busy, so were able to swim and sun bathe and get as bed without any bother.

  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank celEdinburgh53
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RithymnaBeach, Marketing Coordinator at Aquila Porto Rethymno, responded to this reviewResponded September 20, 2013

Dear Guest,

We would like to thank you very much for having selected our hotel to spend you summer holidays.
We have read very carefully your review and have respectfully noted all your comments and we are really very pleased that in general it seems that you have enjoyed your stay since you commented positively on the food in both our restaurants, the beach and of course our staff.

Concerning the problem with the reservation of the beach sunbeds, we really believe that we do everything in our power not to let that happen consistently, but some people as you mention continue to ignore our regulations and guidance, and make sure that they make their ‘’sunbed reservation’’ even before beach opening hours when no one from our staff is there yet and we are sorry that the above caused your dissatisfaction.

We hope that perhaps sometime in the not too distant future you may once again consider returning to our hotel and give us the opportunity to offer you the pleasant holiday that meets with your expectations.


Mr. Kostas Damanakis
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 28, 2013

An excellent hotel with its own beach just across the road. Sunbeds, brollies & towels provided and changed whenever required.10-15 min walk to the old town of Rethymnon (or a bus ride from the top of the road - 1 euro). It was interesting that the hotel is keen to recycle and provide bags in the rooms, paper & fabric for your use.

The food was first class, a wonderful selection for both breakfast & evening meals, we were on half-board. Breakfast - freshly squeezed orange juice (you loaded the machine yourself), salmon & champagne at least once a week, smoothies & wafles to order, together with a great selection of hot & cold buffet. You could not fault the evening meals, again a wonderful selection. Only criticism was the price of the wine, rather expensive. We didn't try the a-la-carte restaurant but understand it was very good.

The rooms were spacious, fresh & well-equipped.

Indoor pool, spa & jaccuzi available if required. Outdoor pool with sunbeds & smaller splash pool.
.
Entertainment - daytime well organised beach games; evening music ok, Greek dancers good, Brazilian show rubbish.

Staff at Reception (Stellios) & all the Restaurant staff (Giorgos the maître-d', Magda & Filio in particular) very helpful & friendly, always willing to assist be it with bus timetables, where to buy coffee to make Greek coffee,

If you are considering this hotel, and you want a town location near the beach this is a winner., we can't wait to go back again.

Room Tip: 3rd - 6th floors give the best views - we were in 303 which had a side sea view.
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  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Bill037Oxford
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Aquila Porto Rethymno

Address: Venizelou 52A | Sikelianou, Rethymnon, Crete 741 00, Greece
Location: Greece > Crete > Rethymnon Prefecture > Rethymnon
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Spa Hotel in Rethymnon
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Rethymnon
#6 Business Hotel in Rethymnon
#7 Luxury Hotel in Rethymnon
#19 Romantic Hotel in Rethymnon
Price Range: $82 - $332 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Aquila Porto Rethymno 5*
Number of rooms: 202
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Inspired by the waterfront setting of the stunning northern coastline of Crete, Aquila Porto Rethymno brings the essence of an urban resort located within a striking distance of 700m from the city of Rethymno. The hotel presents a cosmopolitan escape, as you relax, dine and wander among Rethymno's most beautiful and historic sites offering the perfect base for business or leisure travelers. Chic, luxury hotel building and accommodation offer superb amenities and recreational facilities for all travelers. The hotel has been recognized internationally with prestigious awards and certifications for its commitment to the best service and hospitality. Porto Rethymno is an urban oasis featuring beautifully appointed guest rooms and suites which meet the needs of every traveler. The recently renovated guest rooms and suites have mostly views of Rethymno beach or the city harbor featuring a refreshing color palette inspired by a sophisticated fabulous setting. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Aquila Porto Rethymno Rethymnon, Crete
Porto Rethymnon
Hotel Aquila Porto Rethymno

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