1 . Domes of Elounda

Crete,

CALL DIRECT: +1 (231) 081 - 0624

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Quintessential Greece, only better, seems to be the impetus for our No. 1 spot. Here at the Domes of Elounda, a whole new concept of luxury, architecture and design blends seamlessly with the natural surroundings for a Greece vacation experience that is simply unmatched.

It starts with Domes of Elounda’s unique approach to luxury – one this Greece resort appropriately deems livable luxury. Your impeccable Grecian villa may look like something out of a travel magazine, but there’s no need to be intimated by its graceful domed ceilings, international art pieces and exquisite decor. After all, they were furnished for the sole purpose of your enjoyment! The sparkling waters of the Mediterranean Sea – visible from your Domes of Elounda villa or suite – are a breathtaking sight to wake to each morning. But we found a space that somehow surpasses even this Grecian sea’s shimmering beauty. Literally covered from floor to ceiling with iridescent glass tiles, the world-famous Milfey Spa features an exotic black mosaic seawater pool, floating light fixtures and the most luxurious spa treatments in all of Greece.

Highlights

The Domes of Elounda resort consists of 80 suites, eight private residences, three villas and a royal villa that represents not only the beauty of the Mediterranean, but also exemplifies Cretan culture.

Related Onsite Offerings

Dining at one of the three restaurants at Domes of Elounda is a culinary experience in itself. From a casual beachside setting to an intimate romantic dinner for two, you’ll find it all at this Greece resort.

Fun facts

The only Greek chef in the country awarded with a Michelin star, Lefteri Lazarou has transformed the Domes of Elounda dining experience.

2 . Blue Palace Resort & Spa

Lasithi,

CALL DIRECT: +1 (210) 363 - 3551

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While we can’t fulfill your secret wish of trading your legs for fins and ruling a mythical mermaid kingdom beneath the Mediterranean’s surface, our No. 2 can deliver the next best thing. In fact, the Blue Palace Resort and Spa promises to fulfill virtually every whim on your Greece vacation!

We could feign surprise, but over-the-top luxury and hospitality like this is to be expected from the Crete outpost of Starwood Hotel’s elite Luxury Hotels Collection. Like an exclusive private villa, one of only four on the property, with a private infinity-edge pool that disappears into the cobalt-blue horizon. And inside, another aquatic venture awaits in this Greece villa’s luxurious bath, where a whimsical egg-shaped deep soaking tub offers just enough space for two. Like we said, Blue Palace Resort is a place where your sea goddess fantasies can finally come to fruition! You’ll find a generous – okay, extravagant – dose of luxury at Blue Palace Resort, but don’t think this Greece resort has forgotten its Cretan roots. Here, stone paths lead to secluded groves of native olive trees and fragrant herb gardens, and suites feature clean lines and subtle interiors so that nothing distracts from the spectacular Crete scenery that waits outside!

Related Onsite Offerings

The Elounda Spa and Thalassotherapy has been awarded a number of prestigious awards and accolades, including the 2007 Spa Finder Readers' Award for the best spa in Greece.

Fun facts

If you can’t bear to leave the simple beauty of your Blue Palace villa or suite, this Greece resort will bring its restaurant’s authentic Cretan cuisine to the private comfort of your villa terrace.

Highlights

Blue Palace’s beachside taverna, Blue Door, occupies the former living quarters of a Cretan fisherman and serves up everything from grilled seafood to Grecian specialties on tables covered in quaint blue and white checkers.

3 . Elounda Gulf Villas & Suites

Crete,

CALL DIRECT: +1 (281) 022 - 7132

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If your vision for the perfect Mediterranean vacation doesn’t include a crowd full of unfamiliar faces, we’ve found a Greece resort that just might live up to your exacting standards. You won’t find a more private, secluded Greece experience than our No. 3 spot, Elounda Gulf Villas and Suites!

We’re sure whoever awarded the Elounda Gulf Villas and Suites its prestigious five-star designation must have had their reasons, but we’ve taken the liberty of finding our very own list of things to love about this Grecian paradise. The resort’s location overlooking the breathtaking expanses of the Gulf of Mirabello takes the first star. Elounda’s creative take on the traditional infinity pool – yours to enjoy in complete and utter seclusion from your private villa terrace – captures the second star. And as for the third, fourth and fifth, this trio undoubtedly goes to the opulent interiors and unparalleled luxury offered by Elounda’s Grecian estates. You may have your own ideas about a Mediterranean vacation, but if you ask us, privacy and seclusion bring to mind a Grecian experience of a different kind. And we simply can’t imagine a more suitable destination for a Greece wedding, honeymoon – or both – than the exclusive Elounda Gulf Villas and Suites!

Related activities

Elounda’s experienced massage team and state-of-the-art spa gallery keep you in top form on your Greece vacation.

Related Onsite Offerings

Elounda’s Argo Restaurant offers elegant dining by candlelight in a breathtaking poolside setting.

Highlights

Italian fabrics, marble baths and tromp d’eol ceilings are highlights of Elounda Gulf’s luxurious suites.

4 . St. Nicolas Bay

Crete,

CALL DIRECT: +1 (284) 102 - 5041

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The No. 4 spot on our Top 10 Greece Vacations list may bear the name of a beloved saint, but it’s a mythical figure of another kind that makes St. Nicolas Bay a Grecian oasis of epic proportions.

Poseidon is best known for his fierce demeanor and three-pronged triton, but St. Nicolas Bay invites you to experience the softer side of this legendary sea god. Granted, he gets a fair bit of help from Elemis – the leader among British spas – but the Poseidon Spa’s marine facials, ocean wraps and other sea-inspired selections all harken back to this aquatic deity. As for that sun-kissed glow so often sported by Greek goddesses, St. Nicolas Bay lets you fake it the Elemis way with a sensational Ceremony of Sun ritual – no toga required! The mythical Poseidon was also rumored to have his fair share of sea-faring offspring, and we can’t imagine a more fitting place to bring your brood than the St. Nicolas Bay villa that shares his name! Inside the Poseidon House, two levels of luxurious splendor include airy rooms and entertainment for the kids, plus an ultra-private master bedroom complete with marble-lined Jacuzzi. And outside, a terrace garden steps out to the heart of this Grecian suite: a private pool and sweeping views of Mirabello Bay!

Related activities

Looking to add a little adventure to your Greece vacation? The Waters Sports Center at St. Nicolas Bay offers water skiing lessons, windsurfing, canoes and other aquatic ventures!

Highlights

A delicious fruit basket, bottle of wine and mineral water in your bungalow or suite is St. Nicolas Bay’s humble way of welcoming you to the islands!

Related Onsite Offerings

St. Nicolas Bay’s private beach features a wide expanse of sandy cove dotted with sun terraces, lounge chairs, umbrellas and beach towels.

5 . Grand Resort Lagonissi

Athens, Attiki

CALL DIRECT: +1 (302) 917 - 6000

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We expected great things from a luxury resort set in south Athens, but even we couldn’t have imagined such grand proportions – all perched on a private peninsula that stretches out into the Aegean Sea’s breathtaking waters. For sun, sea and pleasure on your Greece vacation, there’s only one Grand Resort Lagonissi!

Athena may have been the goddess of wisdom, but even this celebrated Greek deity couldn’t compare to whoever dreamt up – and realized – our No. 5 spot. Fellow Athenians may have built the majestic Parthenon in honor of their beloved patron, but Grand Resort Lagonissi has amassed a devoted following of its own. One visit and its not hard to see why – endless water sports, a world-class spa and breathtaking Mediterranean Suites set literally on the water’s edge combine for a Greece vacation unlike any other! This Athens luxury resort has even established an exclusive club to reward such unflagging devotion. The aptly-named Loyalty Club includes incredible privileges like complimentary fruit-infused cocktails graciously pressed into your hand, tropical blooms gracing your Lagonissi suite and a limo, helicopter or even a private plane waiting in the wings to whisk you away in true jet-setting fashion. We’re all for being practical, but if you ask us, this sounds like just the excuse we needed to come back again and again and…well, you get the picture!

Related activities

Don’t spend all your time by the sea! Just down the Apollo Coast lies the Temple of Poseidon, the Lavrio Archeological Museum and the twin symbols of Greek civilization: Acropolis and the Parthenon.

Highlights

Grand Resort Lagonissi’s idyllic seaside setting, exclusive amenities and superior hospitality make it the destination of choice for Greece weddings, honeymoons and special occasions!

Related Onsite Offerings

Endless entertainment options at Grand Resort Lagonissi include tennis, jogging, bicycling, basketball, volleyball, mini golf, sailing, windsurfing, SCUBA diving and even fitness classes right on the beach!

Unlike some of its peers, our No. 6 spot chooses to stand out, not through lavish solid gold candlesticks or original artwork, but by using essential and simplistic décor. Though you won’t find vaulted cathedral-like ceilings, you will find elegance in a class all its own.

St. George Lycabettus Boutique Hotel strives to create a modern, but soothing and Zen-like theme. The success is evident in the Presidential Suite. Earth-toned colors, full curtains and subtle lighting enhance the glow of Athens’ city lights outside the floor-to-ceiling windows. Another great view is found on the terrace of Le Grand Balcon. Dine sitting on plush red velvet seats with the Acropolis in the background. Or, leave it behind and slip under the azure pool water. We do suggest emerging to explore Syntagma Square, or Constitution Square. The Square is home to the Parliament Building, what used to be the King’s Palace, built in the early 1800s, and the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, which is guarded by the elite soldiers, Evzones.

Highlights

St. George Lycabettus Boutique Hotel is located in the Kolonaki district, famous as a business, shopping and entertainment area of Athens

Fun facts

Small pets are allowed to stay with you at St. George!

Related Onsite Offerings

St. George offers laundry service, complimentary stays for children under two in parents’ room, a minibus service to the city center, sauna, fitness facility and more.

7 . Divani Apollon Palace & Spa

Athens, Attiki

CALL DIRECT: +1 (210) 891 - 1100

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Our No. 7 pick has a name that reminds us of Cinderella’s glass slipper – a perfect fit! The Divani Apollon Palace and Spa is your fairytale Greek kingdom on the Athenian Riviera.

The exclusive beachfront location, 18 kilometers from Athens’ city center, means that you can relax on Divani Apollon Palace’s private cinnamon-colored sand beach all day if you’d like. Umbrellas, sun beds and chairs are all available and complimentary. If you’re more drawn to the water than sun, the two outdoor pools, with fountains and a stylish foot bridge, will quench your aquatic thirst. And the outdoor children’s pool ensures that the kids won’t wander too far away. As much as we love swimming in the Grecian sunshine, we were even more taken by the indoor pool. With its cascading water and unique centerpiece, we felt like floating Greek deities. Take that buoyant feeling of ethereal bliss to be fed at Mythos of the Sea. This restaurant is romantically set by the Kavouri Bay and serves delectable dishes on the open-air deck. Or, take credit for finding Atlantis – Atlantis Lounge, that is. Its fresh coffee and pastries are an ideal way to start your Greek morning.

Related activities

Reap the benefits of Thalassotherapy at Divani Apollon Palace’s Divani Athens Spa and Thalasso Centre. Thalassotherapy uses marine elements, like seawater, sea mud and seaweed to balance body and spirit.

Related Onsite Offerings

Looking for an active way to enjoy Greece’s scenery? Take a jog on the route outside the hotel or take a swing on the 18-hole Glyfada golf course.

Fun facts

Divani Apollon Palace and Spa was the first hotel in Athens to become a member of the Leading Hotels of the World.

8 . Vedema Resort Santorini

Santorini,

CALL DIRECT: +1 (228) 608 - 1796

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We knew that traveling to Santorini would entail all the goodies of an island getaway, but we didn’t expect the astounding style of our No. 8 spot. Going beyond plush bedding and crystal blue pool waters, this resort stole our hearts with its creative architecture and unparalleled scenery.

Deriving inspiration from the original 400-year old winery that Vedema is built around, the resort takes its roots in unspoiled, natural Greek beauty. Forty-five white-washed houses are encircled by a wall and create an exclusive community of luxury. Gaze out across the emerald vineyards to the aquamarine Aegean Sea from the comfort of your own Aegean Suite patio. Improve the view – if that’s even possible – from your private pool or open-air Jacuzzi on the Olympian Villa veranda. Or, just sit in your Athenian Suite living room with a glass of white Santorini wine in hand as the sea breeze blows through the spacious two bedrooms and two bathrooms. As if your suite or villa was not relaxing enough, the Vedema Spa is also on site. Using a minimalist Cycladic style, treatments like a Traditional Olive Oil Massage will put you on a Greek oasis of serenity inside and out.

Related activities

Part of the fun of staying on an island is exploring the water around it. Leave Santorini behind for a day and sail out onto the Aegean Sea for a volcano tour!

Related Onsite Offerings

Lounge on Vedema’s private beach with shuttle service, beach bar, sun beds, umbrellas and towel service. Or, use a mountain bike from the hotel – free of charge – to explore the island.

Highlights

Truly a Mediterranean oasis, Santorini is the southern-most island in the Cycladic group located in the Aegean Sea. It is 63 nautical miles north of Crete.

9 . Hotel Grande Bretagne, Athens

Athens,

CALL DIRECT: +1 (210) 333 - 0000

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With sweeping white curtains, polished and patterned marble floors and elegant chandeliers, you could swear that you’re in a Victorian-era palace. Once you see the Acropolis of Athens from your table at GB Roof Garden, however, you’ll realize this is ancient Greece – but with modern luxury.

The Hotel Grande Bretagne takes a tip from its historical surroundings and then adds posh highlights. For example, the exterior of the hotel is reminiscent of the famous Acropolis, except its lights shine upward to accent the spacious balconies and give a white sheen to the walls. Continuing to mix the old with the new is Hotel Grande Bretagne’s outdoor pool. This is no ordinary outdoor pool. This heated outdoor aqua feature is located on the seventh floor of the hotel but feels as if it is on the Aegean Sea shore. Enveloped by blooming flowers and native cypress trees, enjoy the view of majestic Lycabettus Hill from the pool’s refreshing waters or beneath the shade in a chaise lounge. Before we leave, we must gush about The Atrium. Enjoy healthy dishes, like local grilled fish, broth-based soups and Greek yoghurt with honey seated around a classic fountain and marble busts.

Related Onsite Offerings

Hotel Grande Bretagne’s rooms keep up with the style that first greets you in the lobby. Stay in a Classic Room with convenient fog-resistant bathroom mirrors or in the opulent Presidential Suite appointed with a sitting area and a two-sided fireplace.

Related activities

Take a breather at GB Spa for facials using Europe’s best skin care line, Valmont, slimming body wraps using algae extract or simple relaxation in the Thermal Suite with laconium, sauna and herbal steam bath.

Getting there

From Eleftherios Venizelos/Athens International Airport, exit onto Attiki Odos Toll Highway in the direction of Elefsina. Proceed until Junction Y4 Ag. Paraskeyi. This leads to Messogion Avenue, which you follow into the city center of Athens. At the end of Messogion Avenue, turn left onto Vas. Sofias Avenue. Continue for 2 km until you arrive at Syntagma Square. Hotel Grande Bretagne is on your right.

10 . Life Gallery Athens

Athens, Attiki

CALL DIRECT: +1 (281) 030 - 0330

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Feed your artist’s soul at the Life Gallery Athens. Our No. 10 spot is swathed in a decidedly modern style, designed to both inspire and pamper. The defining feature – the glass exterior of the Life Gallery itself – creates an aura of openness and harmony with the lush suburb outside.

Even if you’re not a conscious student of Zen, you will find a place of enlightened tranquility in Life Gallery’s Ananea Spa. Experience the one-of-a-kind power of an Indian system of healing, Ayurveda, called the “science of life.” Between this, a hot stone massage and organic facial cleansing, we felt our energy reawaken. Another amenity to refresh the senses is Wine Gallery. This chic restaurant serves gourmet Mediterranean and ethnic Greek food accompanied by a selection of 420 wines, all stored in a temperature-regulating facility. The world is a beautiful place, and where better to experience it than Greece’s Life Gallery? The two outdoor swimming pools are ideal for sunshine and absolute relaxation. Just as the hotel’s clear walls unveil nature’s beauty, the glass-walled pool allows you to feel suspended in the water and gain a whole new perspective of the dry land on the other side.

Fun facts

The owner, Gina Mamidakis, co-designed Life Gallery with the idea to create a metaphor for life’s richer experiences and to provide a gallery setting for local artists.

Related Onsite Offerings

Take time out to visit the Library, full of Greek literature and exhibits of modern Greek artists. Or, strip away all distractions in the Meditation Room.

Related activities

Life Gallery Athens is located in the suburb of Ekali. This sophisticated community is close to Kifissia and the main highways. It is 25 km from Eleftherios Venizelos International Airport and only 20 minutes from downtown Athens.

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