Having done numerous internet searches on Rhodes, I stumbled across the website for the Lydia Maris. The hotel is ~20 years old, but had been totally refurbished for summer 2006. In advance, we knew that Kolymbia is a very 'German' resort, but upon checking some German hotel review sites, the Lydia Maris got rave reviews. The website pictures were gorgeous, and we decided to book (myself, wife and child) for 2 weeks.
My first comment to all of the above - take it all with the pinch of salt. Looking back at the website and photos, I have to admit all of those things exist at the hotel, but the photographer and webdesigner did an excellent job. The pool is smaller in reality. For a hotel with a 450 bed total capacity, I counted about 80-90 sunbed spaces around the pool. The upshot is (cliche coming), you have to be an early riser to secure your sunbed of choice.
The rooms are modest and clean, but don't expect UK/USA 4* here - this is Greek 4* !!
The hotel is an All Inclusive establishment. We opted for Ultra All Inclusive. In retrospect, I probably wouldn't have bothered. It allows you free access to your mini-bar (AI people pay), and some perks on things like room service (which we never took).
There are several key areas to the hotel. The covered outside dining area is next to the pool and has a buffet section next to it. This serves as the breakfast area for hot buffet, cereals, pankakes, meats etc. At 10am (on the nose) all is removed, and just some bread rolls and meats remain, so don't be late.
The area also serves as the lunch area (12.30 - 2.00) and the dining area for Monday's Greek night. Here, Greek food is served and for one of the two Mondays we were there, a traditional band and dancers performed (until the hotel owner got up and indulged himself in a song or three).
All other nights, dinner is served in the main dining room. This is very nicely decorated, if a little cramped.
For all meals I would sit back and let the first rush of people get their food. The kitchen brings out more later and since there isn't a line of people you get hot food (took us a few days to find the right timings, but 1.30 pm lunch and 8.15 pm dinner seemed to work).
The food is pretty tasty, if repetitive and with a few too many chips. Beer, wines and soft drinks are on 'self service' offer for most of the day, and the pool bar is open from 10am - 1am.
The pool itself has 3 areas. A child's paddling pool, with jacuzzi next to it. A larger pool, with water ranging from waist to shoulder level, and smaller pool (again at waist height). This gave a lot of areas for the kids (and there are a lot - this is a family hotel) to play.
Evenings become a little repetitive. We aren't into games on the stage, but there were a few of them. So a seat by the pool bar was the choice.
The Animation Team consisted of two people. Again, rather limiting for a hotel of this size. Whilst there are 'activities' throughout the day, there isn't much for the kids. Usually 30 mins of volleyball in the middle of the afternoon and some painting. Also, a 30 minute 'minidisco' each night at 9.15pm. If you are hoping to drop the kids and chill out, you will be disappointed. They really do a good job under the circumstances, but are under resourced.
Kolymbia itself is 20-25 minutes from Rhodes and 15 mins from Lindos. We hired a car for 3 days and explored both. There are plenty of car hire places in Kolymbia (which is really only two streets!). 3 days for a compact car came to around 95EUR. We spoke with someone who took the bus to Rhodes. It took 90 minutes and was a hot and sweaty experience!
In comparison to the other hotels we saw in Kolymbia, the Lydia Maris is probably the better of them. The pool is good and sheltered (if sometimes windy). The AI deal is an all day offering.
We aren't the type of people to go back to places over and over, but I would recommend this hotel - just don't expect the luxury that it's website promotes!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- In the beautiful island of Rhodes on the east side in a green environment at a distance of 24 km from the medieval castle of the Knights in Old Town and Harbor of St. Paul of Lindos and only five km. from the spectacular coast of Virgin Tsampika beach , and Afandou Golf you can find our hotel Lydia Maris in Afandou - Kolymbia place. This resort is set in very idyllic green surroundings of 24.000 square meters of blossom gardens with plenty of plants and very colorfully flowers such as roses, jasmine, bougainvilleas, night flower etc. Emphasis on personal service, attention to detail, relaxation, satisfaction and culinary delights have become synonymous with our hotel. After years of experience from 1989 was completely renovated in 2006 providing high aesthetics, luxury and even more amenities and services to our customers. The complex consists of 205 rooms and features a main building with 16 bungalows , 550 beds, pool with Jacuzzi, children's pool , restaurants , bars , spa, fitn ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Lydia Maris Hotel Kolimbia
- Lydia Maris Kolimbia
- Lydia Maris Resort & Spa Rhodes, Greece