See my review about the Athina Suites (next door) to see how/why we ended up at this hotel. Although, it was a completely unforseen accident, we were more than satisfied with our stay here.
For a fee, there is a shuttle to/from the airport (I recommend you just go to the top of the cliff and get a cab - significantly less expensive and the airport is only a 10-15 min ride away). Beware, there is a very long walk, with lots of steps down the cliff to the room. There are 2 routes you can take, one is a bit longer, but with less steps and the other is shorter, but steeper/with many steps. They have luggage porters waiting for you at the top of the hill, but if you have a lot of luggage, you will no doubt end up carrying something up/down at some point - it is not for those who are not in shape!
The rooms have an absulutely stunning view of the caldera and the cliffside around you. My room was number 15 and I recommend this room above the others, as it is in the top/corner where people will not be trouncing through your patio/space all day. In the cliff in Fira, the rooms are built upon a steep cliff, which means that your room may be on one level, with your patio area several steps below you (a short flight of steps) and the main pool a rather long hike down numerous steps at the bottom level, etc. Our room was carved out of the cliffside with a large volcanic rock sticking out of the wall, which gave it a rather Cave-like feel. The windows do not have screens, but I think it's better that way. The only downside is that if you leave them open all night, not only will you hear a lot of noise from the town above and your neighbors (very close next door), you will also be eaten alive by mosquitos. We left windows open during daytime (only when we were home, of course) and closed at night to avoid this. It was quite small, but as I usually say in my reviews: it was more than adequate if you are not carrying a lot of luggage and do not expect to be home much. Which is always the case with me. There was a slightly moldy aroma in the room, although the only visible signs of mold were in the toilet/shower area. In a room that small, you really smell it and unfortunately, I am very allergic to most molds, so it was a bit uncomfortable to me. The A/C worked quite well and we had it on to help cover the smell, but the A/C also produced a moldy smell when you first turned it on. Thankfully it subsided after a few minutes. At times we had both the A/C on and the windows open. I know its a waste of energy, but a girl's gotta breathe, no?
Aside from the mold smell (there was just a tiny bit of it around the bottom edge of the tub), there was a lot of dust on the wine glasses, wine bottle, tv, etc. I know they came in and cleaned every day, but it appeared that they may spend most of their time mopping, vacuuming and scrubbing the bathroom and bed, more than dusting. I had to wash the glasses before use. They were completely covered in dust.
Both of those issues were things that we could work around. But at the time, it seemed to me that for the price of the room, those issues should not have existed.
The bed wasn't super comfortable, but comfortable enough that it wasn't a real problem. We slept just fine.
The breakfast was very good. Cereals, pastries, eggs, bacon, potatoes, yogurt, all the usuall jams, nutella and other toppings, toast, juices, coffee, etc. And the woman who works the breakfast area took her job very seriously and did a great job of keeping everything filled up, warm and clean. We tipped her well.
There isn't much to the hotel grounds, being that the hotel is built on a cliff. Your room will likely have a patio with chairs, just below your room. Below that you may or may not have another little "balcony" with a sm table and chairs. There are red bougainvilla growing everywhere along the white washed hotel, which was quite lovely.The hotel pool was a pretty hefty hike down a lot of steep, short stairs, but the view was spectacular. It is surrounded by a sitting area carved into the rock and there are loungers around the pool as well as on the deck above the pool (looking down at it from one level up). The pool falls in the shadow of the cliff for a lot of the day and we found it to be rather chilly pretty much all of the time. It was way too cold for me to get in it at any point, but my fiancee got in it (and back out again, within a minute or so - lol!).
The service was spot on. They were ready, willing and able to help with anything and everything. No complaints there.
Of course you are charged (rather heftily) for the water and beers in the fridge (a water should cost about 30-50 euro cents in Greece. So 2 euros for a small bottle of water is a bit shocking....but it's even worse than that at places near the Acropolis in Athens and at the airports or Rhodes town). That wasn't a huge problem for us, it's the price you pay for convenience. But I just thought I should put a warning out there about it - bring your own water from the grocery stores (away from the tourist areas, if possible - you don't even have to go that far out of the tourist zones, just a few feet makes a huge difference to the wallet).
Overall, I would say this was a really nice hotel in one of the most gorgeous settings I have ever seen. The service is great. The rooms are lovely (although ours had a touch of mold in it) and the breakfast is more than adequate. I would definitely recommend this hotel to anybody who can afford it!
PS: WARNING, if you decide to walk up or down the famous steps of Santorini, know that it is quite slippery, covered in donkey dung, you may be poked or nibbled by passing donkeys, does not smell that great, do not wear open toed shoes or your toes will be covered in dung by the end and WATCH OUT for the guy that sells cactus juice in the cafe that is about half way down the slope. By the time you reach him, you will be hot and tired and ready to sit and stare at the view some more. He will offer you FRESH cactus juice from cactus fruit which he claims he picked from the cliffside himself, that morning. He will put a lot of "friendly" pressure on you to buy one for each person with you (by friendly, I mean he will smile, etll jokes, come on to you or others in your party, etc). The juice is good, but you only get a few ounces in a tall glass of ice (you are basically paying for cactus juice flavored ICE) and in our case, he then disappeared, leaving some other guy to collect the payment - WHICH WAS 10 EUROS!!! ..for just a few ounces. We could not find him to protest and the guy collecting money naturally didn't speak much English and was "confused". One was barely enough for me, if I had bought 2, I would have been out 20 Euros!!! ...for just a few ounces of juice (mostly ice). Not worth it!! WATCH OUT FOR THIS GUY.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Situated on a privileged location, on Fira's Caldera cliffs, with magnificent views of the volcano, the deep blue of the sea and the most famous sunset from your private balcony. A stylish property newly renovated consisting of 13 suites with a Cycladic style using local materials, stone-built suites with organic forms and smooth curves blended nicely with whitewashed walls combines simplicity with luxury. This combination plus the unique décor make the atmosphere really relaxing. From our Superior Deluxe Suite's Jacuzzi to the private balcony of our Petite Suite cave room, combine the simplicity with the luxury. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Porto Fira Hotel Fira
- Porto Hotel Fira
- Porto Fira Suites Santorini