After reading many positive reviews on TripAdvisor, we decided to select Heliotopos Hotel for our first trip to Santorini. Although the view from our hotel room was outstanding, it was about a 35 min walk to the capital city of Fira, which is the closest place to find food, shopping and entertainment. Renting a car is advised if staying anywhere in Imerovigli. Because we visited Santorini in the off season of December/January, our choices for dining were extremely limited (Most of the restaurants close during this time).
When we asked hotel management for recommendations for a restaurant they offered nothing and encouraged us to dine at the hotel. This was a mistake. The food was awful... the selection was limited and nothing seemed fresh right down to the cold canned tomato paste/sauce that was served with my sub-par, tasteless Chicken Souvlaki. My boyfriend was just as unhappy with his meal. We had experienced many Greek dishes in Athens before making the trek to Santorini, some better than others, but nothing was this bad. Because of the rave reviews we decided to try the breakfast, even after this discouraging first meal. The selection for breakfast was: Spinach pie, Greek cookies, cereal, bread, honey and jams. None of which were impressive or really tasted good at all.
When asking about trips, excursions or other restaurants the hotel staff was not helpful. They acted as if they were the only place open on the Island. There was one woman, whom we did not encounter until day 3, who was more helpful when she heard we were going on a boat excursion and offered to call and ensure the boat was running (which we essentially already did ourselves).
The view from the balcony of our room was fantastic. The inside of our room was quaint and simple, but cute. We had problems with the electricity going out several times but management was quick and helpful in resolving the issue. The shower leaks onto the bathroom floor, a lot. We resorted to wearing flip-flops in the bathroom to keep our feet dry. When we requested additional towels and linens, we were told they were not on site and we would have to wait for the outsourced cleaning crew.
All-in-all we were disappointed and confused about how this hotel received such high ratings. Perhaps it was because it was the off-season.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Heliotopos is a unique boutique hotel complex in the traditional dome style, with one or two storey suites and studio apartments. Built on the foundations of old island structures it has been constructed to reflect the beauty of Santorini's architecture. Located at the highest point of the crater-top (the rim of the Caldera) it offers an extraordinary, breathtaking view of the volcano, the sea and the surrounding islets from every point of the hotel. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Heliotopos Hotel Imerovigli
- Heliotopos Hotel Santorini/Imerovigli, Greece