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“Good hotel but some improvements could make it better”

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Minoa Palace Resort
Ranked #1 of 68 Hotels in Platanias
Certificate of Excellence
Level 3 Contributor
21 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“Good hotel but some improvements could make it better”
Reviewed August 16, 2009

The Minoa Palace is a resort style hotel which probably wasn't the best choice for us. We were in Greece for the first time and interested in sightseeing and the local culture, history etc. probably more so than a strictly beach/sun holiday.

Sofa (extra) bed was quite hard and not so comfortable, although the main beds were very nice. Our room was on the beach side and while nicely furnished with a nice ocean/pool view, it did have an unpleasant smell upon entering, although within a few minutes of having the aircon turned on, it disappeared.

Breakfast buffet was good with a nice selection, good service and pleasant atmosphere on the beach. Plenty of deckchairs on the beach were available during our stay, but it was evident that many people "reserve" the deckchairs at the pool at an early hour, and definitely difficult to sit by the pool unless you do the same. We're beach people so it didn't matter to us. The beach area was fine, although within driving distance, many much nicer beaches are to be found. (Elofonisi, Farasarna, etc).

However a couple small things decreased our rating of this hotel. They charge for the safety deposit box in your room. This is the first time that I have ever come across this in any hotel ever - I travel extensively on business as well as for holidays! At a beach resort everyone needs to use the SDB so this seems quite petty and unreasonable.

The second thing is on our arrival (Sunday) we needed to have some necessities laundered. We were upcharged for the express service to obtain the return of the items on Tuesday afternoon. Perhaps it was a mis-communication, as apparently the laundry is closed on Sunday. We don't believe that the staff either explained the return time adequately, or that they showed any sympathy to try and resolve this issue.

In both cases, small money was at issue, and while supposedly a 5-star (and 5-star prices), the Minoa Palace shouldn't have to stoop to these kinds of practices.

While overall a nice hotel, not to our taste. It was a last minute booking and we should have planned better to find a more suitable place for our family's first visit to Crete. A smaller inn or hotel in Chania or Reythmon would have better fit our travel plans.

  • Stayed August 2009, traveled with family
    • Value
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Thank Kildonan_kid
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed August 15, 2009

We were spending our best holidayweek in Minoa Palace with our 13 years old daughter and 3 years old son. Grandparents were with us too. Food was very excellent and hotel was like something to everyone. The staff was great, every evening the cleaner came to our room for asking if we needed clean towels (that was babyservice). We all slept there so well, better than at home. That was surprising cose I usually sleep badly anywhere else but home. Even the little boy slept to nine in the morning! The airconditioning worked well. Platanias itself weren`t so beautiful than other places in Greece I've been. But we just wanted to relax and eat well and spend time together as a family and that was the best place for it! This was the first time I really wanted to stay for another week in the hotel and coming back to home wasn't nice at all. Maybe we'll be back there.

  • Stayed August 2009, traveled with family
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Thank jan027
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Englanddd :)
2 reviews
Reviewed August 12, 2009

This was my third visit to Crete but my second to minoa. It was yet again absolutely brilliant and i am glad that we decided to go back there again. It felt so good to walk back through the hotel doors and instantly be recognised by members of the hotel. We were lucky enough to stay in the same rooms we had last year which was excellent as we loved them particular rooms. The rooms provide you with almost everything as in the bathroom each day we recieved a clean supply of towels and we had our own hair drier, soaps, toilet rolls, etc. It was lovely to see many of the same staff as we had been with last year as they are all lovely, polite and easy to have a good conversation with. The hotel as usual was up to EXCELLENT standards and we were just as impressed as before. The food was again lovely however me and my step sister tend to be very picky eaters so found it hard to eat alot on this holiday. We found ouseleves eating bread, salad and pasta most nights. The mix of people in minoa this year was by far better than last year as there were plenty more english people so therefoe easy to talk to. We met many wonderful people there, although there were some who we found did not take a liking to us as we were always having a laugh and messing around, so people did look down their noses at us. There are two computers in the hotel with free access which we found was brilliant as it was nice to have regular chats with friends and family. Although, you could only go on for the mximum of 15 minutes if others were waiting so me and my step sister decided to go on at around midnight as no one would be on. The pools are lovely and refreshing, so if you get very hot whilst sunbathng it feels lovely to jump in to to cool down. We mainly went in the pool closest to the beach as we were always on the beach. The beach was still beautiful. The sand is very soft but we found it very hard to walk on as it got very hot and we had to run in the shady patches. The sea had several days where it was very very choppy - the waves were enormous and extremely dangerous to swim in but when the sea was calm, it was nice to be able to swim in or sit on a lilo and relax. Minoa provides you with free sunbeds, so you are normally with the same people most of the time. Considering pool toilets are usually disgusting with wet and sandy floor, minoa's toilets are perfect. They get cleaned at LEAST three times a day, so after getting in the pool it felt good to use clean toilets. However, you can get a bit bored around the hotel for two weeks so i do suggest mixing with some people as it does make it a bit funner. The town we found extrememly boring this time as there isnt much to do just bars, restaurants and shops. For a nearly 16 year old girl that can be VERY boring, so me and my step sister did often come back to the hotel at half 10 instead of our usual 12. Luckily for us there were three greek boys staying at the hotel fom last year, so we could go back and have fun at the hotel. Otherwise, im sure we would have been vey bored. I would suggest this hotel to anyone because it is truely an amazing hotel, you would have to be very fussy to not like Minoa. We are going back next year but only for a week.

  • Stayed July 2009, traveled with family
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Thank xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxox
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kifissia, Greece
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed August 5, 2009

We decided to take a break from our busy, city-centered lives and picked Minoa Palace resort & Spa for 8 nights. We had very positive comments about its location and facillities but none about its fabulous cuisine and especially Minoa Palace Head Chef, Mr Tsivourakis!
We cannot find words to describe how amazingly he designs the menus!
Highly recommended Resort for a wonderful and quality leisure time.

  • Stayed August 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank DKasvis
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
Reviewed July 24, 2009

We had a great time with our 3 year old boy during our stay at the Minoa. They provided a pool view room for us (extra €10/ night only) that the tour operator (Thomson) was unable/ unwilling to arrange. No request was too much trouble, food was very good and the pool area is wonderful. Stepahnie at the kids club is doing the most fantastic job and all staff members were very friendly. The hotel was spotlessly clean and well organised. Positioning is very good within in easy walking distance of some nice tavernas, supermarkets etc. Platanias itself is a typical family orientated tourist resort without much charm but free of lagerlouds. We stayed in the old part of the hotel which we would always recommend given the extra cost for the imperial wing (closer to the beach). The bridge connection makes is troublefree to get to the beach and the pool area in the old wing is much nicer.
We can only say that we had a great time and can not understand the negative comments that some people have left. If these people want Burj al Arab service they should pay the price - the Minoa was excellent value for money!

  • Stayed July 2009, traveled with family
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Thank ShropshireOskar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Espoo, Finland
Level 5 Contributor
49 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 63 helpful votes
Reviewed July 21, 2009

We spent one lovely week in the hotel in mid July and really enjoyed it! We got from this hotel exactly what we wanted, it met almost all our expectations. I'll list all the positives, then negatives, both based on OUR preferences.

- Location. About 20min ride from Chania airport (we had travel agency bus, taxi trip would cost around 40eur). Few hundred meters from "city center" Platanias, although not in a noisy part by far. On the beach. Million of supermarkets and tavernas right outside of the hotel. We didn't go to this vacation to hike around, explore local specialties or to party, just to rest and sunbathe. So, what might be seen as a negative by others was a certain positive.

- Premises. The hotel is a complex of interconnected segments, older part south of a local main road, newer part north of the road, pretty much right on the beach. The 2 parts are connected by a pedestrian ramp above the road, so no need to cross it. Although it's also possible to go from one part to the other on the ground as well, there's a pedestrizan zebra with a traffic light.

We liked plentiful greenery on the premises (in the older part) - lawns, garden, flowerbeds, palm trees, some blooming bushes in staircases in between building segments etc.

We also enjoyed a handful of interconnected outdoors swimming pools, especially those "bowls" - it provided variety of cooling off in water while tanning.

Galleries, connections, staircases in between the segments, terraces, backyard were also prettily designed and decorated. We totally preferred this segments system (especially in the older part) of the hotel to some monoblock. Quite charming.

- Rooms. We stayed in the older part, so called mountain view room. In reality you get very green back garden of the hotel, some sleek trees, rolling hills and mountains on the background of the entire picture. Really calming and pretty. We really preferred our side of the building to the rooms overlooking the swimming pools in the front of the older part: we had more privacy and less noise compared to those, we really appreciated that arrangement.

We heard staying in the newer part would've been better cuz of seaview and more modern interior design but we were in no rush for either one: weare coastal dwellers so seaview is something that we have at home; nor we are too keen on modern style interiors. Also, the pool in the newer part was "boring" compared to those in the older part. So, personally for us it was perfect.

Our room was decent size, with seating area and balcony (all rooms have balconies or a terrace), spotless clean, marble bathroom with actual tub. Come to think of it, the entire hotel territory seemed to be very clean (although I spotted a few cigarette butts on the naroow edge between the lawn and tile in the pool area). Like other reviewers, I also noticed that beds were somewhat hard but once again - for my personal preference it was just perfect. AirCon worked great cooling the room down in just a minute or 2.

- Service. We had very uncomfotable flight times, arrived to the hotel shortly after 9am, but check-in time only after noon. The registration happened instantly, our bags taken to storage room and we've been offered to join the breakfast buffet, although "officially" all our services would kick in only after 12 o clock. Then a customer service rep speaking our language approached us and offered her her services in case of any need. Although I have no problems with English we did turn to her once and she resolved everything instantly.

By 11am we were already very tired after our sleepless travel night, nor my mother was feeling too well in the non-AirCon'ed lobby. I approached the the receptionist again asking to figure out a room for us ASAP. She got a manager involved and 3min later we were already settling in our room.

Another time sound disappeared from our TV and there was a minor problem with showerhead on our bathroom. I meantioned it to the recpetionist when leaving for a walk and upon our return everything was already fixed.

Beach towels are free, as well as sunbeds (wooden and lighter ones, metal/plastic). There was plenty of them and was always enough for eveyone, despite the hotel being full and despite the fact that some guests reserved more beds with their towels than they actually used.

Generally staff was very nice, especially waiters. One of the waitresses was super nice, she seemed to enjoy her job and spread totally cozy atmosphere around herself. She even joined dancers and guests in the Greec dancing line and was just.. well, so cozy and cute!

- Food. We were on half board. The food was generally quite good, there was plenty of choices in appetizers, vegetables and meats during all meals. Not sure what another reviewer meant by "food was gross but chips were to die for". Personally, I couldn't care less about chips, pork or fish but I appreciate beef, lamb, spinach/artichoke/aubergine etc dishes, so I was quite happy with the food. One of the dinners had Greek and onther one Crete specific theme.

The food trays refill was being done regularly, I never saw trays that were emty or just had a couple of unappetizing bits left. Neither there were queues for food, just on a couple of occasion there was like a "conveyer belt" of eaters along the rows with food trays but hardly anyone had to actually wait for his turn.

- Stuff for kids. We were there 2 adult relatives with no kids so didn't pay attention to kids related amentities, although there was very many kids, from under 1y.o. all the way up to late teens. I think kids had a pool of their own, although some of them splashed in deeper pools, too. Most of the kids seemed genuinely happy by the pool, in the restaurant and during entertainment.

I think families with kids were placed in another part of the building since we didn't hear any related noise while in our room. Or may be kids were just well behaved since there weren't annoying or dustirbing in the pool area either.

- Entertainment. Not buch but still. 1.Magician. 2.Live Cretan music/dancing. 3. Two dancing couples with a juggling/magician couple. Each of the 3 events were nice (although magic tricks were probably a bit boring for adults), the dancing event was DEFINITELY more fun than similar experience in our Cretan Night tour. (The dancing performance itself was better in the tour but fun for participating tourists was arranged much better in the hotel event). Dancing and juggling was quite alright, too.

Now, the negatives:

- Sea/beach. Clean indeed and nicely arranged but naturally not nice at all. The sand is greyish, the waterline is pebbles, the water muddy. We ourselves live on a coast, also I have plenty of experience with other seas/oceans, so this one wouldn't hold comparison with nearly any of them.

- Rooms. Looked a bit too plain for 5*, may be rooms in the newer part are better.

- Bathroom. There was no shower curtain, just sort of a glassdoor on the tub edge. But it was not big enough to protect the bathroom floor from the shower sprinkling and splashes. Carefully arranged showerhead position and water pressure solved the problem but guests shouldn't be forced to juggle with that sort of stuff in a 5*

No bathrobes. Not that we needed them badly but expected.

No "washing device for private parts".

Magnifing mirror. It was attached to the wall in a way that was uncomfortable to use it, neither it had lighting.

- Food. The biggest disappointment was the news that during our halfboard included dinner ALL drinks were charged for, including soft drinks and just plain water. A bottle of water would cost you 3.70eur or sth like that. I don't know the prices for wines or cocktails because we don't drink alcohol.

Not much food variety from day to day. No oatmeal for breakfast. Only 2 or 3 types of juice.

For ourselves we decided not to take halfboard packages in similar locations anymore: if paying for drinks then the price paid after each meal would run close to a meal in a local taverna, except for it would be more local, we can have variety and also it would be healthier: we have hefty appetite and couldn't say "no" to ourselves while in front of all those full trays. Halfboard is not for eaters like us.

- Service. Some employees could be trained to look/act more friendly. Some do try that but seemingly "just because they have to".

On the 2nd day a cleaner only showed up in late faternoon, when we were resting after the day by the pool and had "Do not disturb" sign. We asked our room to be cleaned while we went outside for a walk, which they did. But it was just a quick bed and towel makeup, not real cleaning. So we kept using "Please make up my room" sign on our door every night to ensure that the room would be cleaned by the time we are back in for our afternoon rest.

- Entertainment. Not much besides what already described. I would agree with other rveiewers that more than half of the nights after dinner were julacking any atmosphere. Once again, we came there to rest, not to party, but even for such boring farts as we are it was a bit dull.

Overall, we enjoyed our stay and tahnks to early booking discount our experience was worth the money. Althought it wouldn't stand up to its full price in my opinion.

  • Stayed July 2009, traveled with family
    • Value
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1 Thank Trasp
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Marple, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
45 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 56 helpful votes
Reviewed July 19, 2009

There seems to be a view that Greek 5* Hotels are equivalent to 4* in some other parts of Europe and there may be some truth to this.
The new Imperial Wing of this Hotel is definitely 5* in terms of accommodation, pool area and breakfasts in a modern dining room overlooking the beach. We were absolutely delighted with our spacious modern room with excellent furnishings, decor and bathroom fittings. The Hotel was spotlessly clean and the staff friendly and courteous. It is obviously the place to stay as the Scorpions (Winds of Change etc) had the penthouse Suite for their gig in nearby Chania when we were there.
The "older" side of the Hotel is still very pleasant and well maintained but the main dining room could do with a makeover to give it a better atmosphere. The lighting is too bright and decor, chairs tables etc a bit old fashioned. However on the plus side the outdoor eating area especially the terrace is very pleasant.
To be honest the Food is probably not 5*, however there is enough choice and it is fresh and plentiful.
We would definitely stay here again and although Platanias (Scandinavia on Sea) is not the classiest resort in the world it is ok in terms of amenities. Much more enjoyable is the beautiful city of Chania, 25 mins on the bus that stops outside the Hotel and the west coast of Crete especially Elafonissi Beach (hire a car for the day from the Hotel).

  • Stayed July 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Thank Whatfordregans
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Minoa Palace Resort

Property: Minoa Palace Resort
Address: Platanias, Chania, Platanias, Crete 730 14, Greece
Phone Number:
Location: Greece > Crete > Chania Prefecture > Platanias
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Platanias
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Platanias
#1 Spa Hotel in Platanias
#1 Luxury Hotel in Platanias
#4 Romantic Hotel in Platanias
#4 Family Hotel in Platanias
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:5 star — Minoa Palace Resort 5*
Number of rooms: 254
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Minoa Palace Resort offers majestic views of its surrounding countryside and the White Mountains. To the north, the hotel enjoys panoramic views of the endless beach of Platanias with the shimmering sapphire blue Aegean beyond. With the extension of the hotel in 2008, guests have immediate access to the beach, over the aerial bridge, connecting the two hotel's sections. The luxury and comfort, combined with the attention to detail and the relaxed atmosphere, provide a holiday to remember for a lifetime! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Minoa Palace Resort And Spa
Minoa Palace Platanias
Minoa Palace Hotel Platanias
Minoa Palace Resort Platanias, Crete - Chania

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