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“Beautiful beach”

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Neilson Retreat Beachclub
Ranked #1 of 10 Hotels in Syvota
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Reviewed September 11, 2013

It is not a good place for sailing as there is not much wind.
It has very nice tennis courts but very bad tennis coaching with limited social tennis time.
The number of steps in a killer but because of it, you gain a great view.

  • Stayed: September 2013, traveled with family
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Review collected in partnership with Thomas Cook
2  Thank Bani N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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419 - 425 of 626 reviews

Reviewed September 9, 2013

Just arrived back from a week in the Neilson Syvota Resort, the Retreat. All in all one of the best holidays ever. A week is definitely not enough, the resort is packed with so many sports and activities you'll be spoilt for choice.
Accommodation - We booked an adjoining garden room as our daughter joined us for the week.
Rooms are very functional and tastefully decorated. The views from our rooms (484 & 486) were incredible. Although looking at the layout of resort almost all rooms have an excellent view. In the rooms you get a fridge, soap and towels in the bathroom, TV with BBC world news (more UK channels would be appreciated). Beds have quite a hard mattress which was fine for us, but I could imagine might be an issue for some people.
Food - very good quality and plenty of variety, loved the fresh omelette every day but compared to some of the other all inclusive resorts we have stayed in, quite basic. Recommend to install a UK style toaster for the sliced bread.
On the nights we didn't eat in the resort we went down to the town of Syvota and enjoyed eating in the local restaurants.
Activities and Sports - we booked premium Water Ski and Wake boarding, I did have to think about it due to the price (£300 each), but it was well worth it. The team are all very enthusiastic and very professional. Our boat was run by Rhi and Lauren (and little Ben on the odd occasion) who were a credit to Neilson. They taught us so much and managed to get our daughter up on a mono ski after a quick lesson on the bar, super!
We had an eight o'clock slot every morning and they were there waiting for us with our favourite skis and boards already in the boat. A massive thanks, you made our holiday.
We also booked a two day taster on a yacht which involved sailing from Syvota to a small harbour called Lakka on the island of Paxos. The boat came with a skipper called Ben a young enthusiastic guy who encouraged us to get involved with the sailing of the boat or just relax.
We had the most amazing experience, and learnt a lot. We met up with the flotilla at our destination and were invited to join them for dinner. We ate in a wonderful local restaurant and after slept on our wonderful yacht (the skipper sleeps on the flotilla lead boat). An excellent experience and a great way to test if life on a yacht is for you. I am sure it will not be our last time.
I also joined the RYA level II sailing and enjoyed sailing the Laser class and the Dart Cats. Hannah our sailing coach did a great job and I was only sorry I could not complete the course as it clashed with our yachting taster, so much to do and so little time ( there's always next time ).
Some tips - Before even arriving we had booked our two day taster on the yacht as places are restricted. We also booked our premium water ski / wakeboard package. I am so glad we did as it took some of the pressure off with the booking sessions after the welcome meeting.
Winds are low (especially in the morning and evening), if your looking for some challenging dinghy sailing this is not the resort for you.
Many people says take some beach shoes as the shingle hurts when walking over to the beach areas, good recommendation.
Improvements - (if Neilson read this review) water ski area sun beds are very old and no mattresses provided on the plastic ones. The whole decking area is looking very worn out. There was a rumour that this is the next area to get a full refurbishment? This would be a massive improvement, but please, please keep the decking areas close to the water so the family members who do not water ski can chill out and just enjoy the atmosphere around the pontoon. All three boats are Ski Nautique, Top quality. We enjoyed very much the Ski show, great to see the team showing off their skills.

Entertainment - we enjoyed the live music from Jack (especially his welcome meeting song).
We did however miss a constant stream of good up to date holiday music. There was even classical music playing at the bar on some occasions (should be banned, very depressing).

All in all a fantastic activity holiday, the resort is built in an amazing location. Yes you have to accept a daily walk up and down hundreds of steps, but for this you get stunning views from almost every part of the resort.
We have been used to all inclusive resorts like Magic life in the past (including water skiing), and it makes a huge difference when the drinks, ice creams etc, are included in the holiday price. I am sure you would have a much better atmosphere in the bar!
We would recommend Neilson to our friends and family and are already planning to return to Syvota. Can't wait, having withdrawal symptoms already.

Stayed: September 2013, traveled with family
1  Thank Adam W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 6, 2013

I have recently come back from a Neilson Active holiday & I thought I had to write a review. It was unreal. I travelled with my family (wife & 3 kids ages from 7 - 17 months).

The hotel, the staff, the nannies especially, the beach team even the skipper of our yatch for the day was great.

Well done Neilson you have it spot on again.

I must admit there are a few steps to battle with but the views from all areas are truly amazing, my kids stubbed there toes a few times but that was rushing to get another ice cream, or go water skiing or go in to the brilliant kids clubs.

Syvota its self is a lovely fishing village full of yummy restaurants to visit (especially Meditranio, great pizza).

Wish I was back there now!!!!!!!

Room Tip: The rooms are all good with great views of the sea & goat island, but hey you only sleep there n...
  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled with family
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Thank christianolder
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 6, 2013

Unanimously voted our family’s “best ever holiday”. First of all there was the view to die, particularly from our bedroom balcony. The hotel was refurbished last winter and is now excellent although I understand more improvements are due for next season. Then the clubs which both our daughters (15 &13) enjoyed so much we hardly saw them for a fortnight: occasionally we’d get a “hi” from the youngest as her pack raced from pool to beach to restaurant, meanwhile the eldest hung out with her new friends in pool/wi-fi zone/restaurant taking in the odd activity when they felt like it. The clubs were brilliantly run with a light touch responding to what the kids wanted to do. Meanwhile we caught up with reading and lazing round the pool in between the odd session of tennis and sailing. The instructors made these sessions a pleasure that left a real sense of achievement and it’s the staff – all of them from instructors and club leaders to restaurant/bar staff - who made the holiday so special. Nielson is a great advertisement for” happy staff = happy customers” they did their jobs professionally whilst being friendly and chatty - they just got it right. A real bonus was the village of Sivota – charming, sleepy, Greek - a 10 minute stroll down the hill (we wimped out and caught taxis back up!) or waterbus on the non inclusive nights. A handful of good tavernas, a couple of interesting art gallery/shops among the tourist tat, loads of ice cream places and a bustling harbour. Easy to while away an hour or two watching the boats coming in and out over an ouzo at any time of day and it felt so comfortable that we all felt happy giving the older teenagers the occasional midnight pass after dinner. Only downside was the hundreds of steps, inevitable for a resort built into a cliff but great for burning off the calories piled on. On that front, it’s hard to make two weeks of buffets interesting but hats off the chefs, they managed it deliciously. We’ve been to Nielson before and enjoyed but we now have a dilemma, whether to sample a different location or return to Sivota next year!

Room Tip: If you can bear the extra fights of steps go for the rooms on top floor, views are amazing
  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled with family
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1  Thank JoannaCymraes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 4, 2013

This was our first holiday with Neilson and we were very impressed.

Firstly the childcare was amazing we have a 5 year old and 1 year old that both joined the clubs. Our youngest hasn't been left before and we were nervous about how she would settle. Our minds were put at rest by Sinead who gave us the confidence and assurances we were looking for. It took a couple of days for her to settle into a routine, but in the end she couldn't wait to go. I can't thank Sinead, Lizzy and Ellie enough for all their care and attention. The nanny's have so much enthusiasm and the activities are amazing no child could ever get bored. Its also really flexible so you can sign in and out at any time which meant we had a great balance of time with and without the kids.

The rooms were basic but adequate. We stayed in the main hotel near reception which had good access for the buggy as this resort has lots of steps!

Drinks and snacks from the bar are expensive so factor in extra spending money. We had dinner in the Bistro on a couple of the non-inclusive nights which was very good. The service was great. Tank you Ben.

The fitness activities made the holiday. My husband is big on triathlon so the bike rides, Goat Island Swim and early morning runs couldn't have been better for his training. I enjoyed the boot camp and aqua aerobics sessions. Our eldest daughter had some one to one swimming lessons which really benefited her.

The swimming pools are in need of refurbishment especially the baby pool. As it has steps leading up to it which got slippery when wet.

We would definitely recommended this resort and Neilson we had a great holiday.

  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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Review collected in partnership with Thomas Cook
Thank melissalwilson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 3, 2013

Not out ususal sort of holiday, as this is an activity centre. Sailing, Stand Up paddleboarding, Windsurfing, Mountain Biking, and the reason we went - Kayaking.

Great place and really friendly, helpful staff.

  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Chizm
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 2, 2013

We just got back from 2 weeks Stay and Sail from the Retreat Hotel.
Our first time on such a holiday and it wont be the last...apart from great water sports, excellent weeks Flotilla and a fantastic location what really made it special was the people (guests) and the staff. Very impressed by the attitude of the staff, helpful, courteous and with a genuine passion for delivering good service, whether the hotel, watersports or sailing staff all made the holiday memorable. With 2 young kids (7 & 10) id recommend this to any family thats looking for something more than a beach or pool and seeking relaxation mixed with some action....and the sailing was great too.....

  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with Thomas Cook
1  Thank Chris250266
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Neilson Retreat Beachclub

Address: 10 min walk from harbour, Syvota, Greece
Location: Greece > Epirus > Thesprotia Region > Syvota
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Parking Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 10 Hotels in Syvota
Number of rooms: 119
Also Known As:
The Retreat Hotel Syvota
Retreat Hotel Sivota
Neilson Retreat Beachclub Greece/Syvota

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