We stayed in Christina 3, one of the three villas in Pendamodi, offered by Zakros Tours. I can not say enough good things about the villa and the staff of Zakros Tours. The Villa is a very nice three bedroom free standing home. The main floor has a large kitchen eating area, fireplace, living room, a 3/4 bath, and a wash machine. Upstairs are three large bedrooms, a full bath, and a separate W/C. There is a very nice size pool in a private garden area. The village of Pendamodi is 20 minutes away from Heraklion, and you will need a car. We were there for seven days and used the villa as a base, traveling to different parts of the island each day, and returning each evening. The villa is clean, modern, looks brand new.
As good as the villa is, the extra special feature is the staff of Zakros Tours. It is a family owned and operated company that really cares about making your stay special. They go out of their way to meet your needs. Adonis Paspalakis, the son of the owner, was too good to be true. He offered to include a car as part of the package, at a very reasonable rate, and I was very glad he did. He picked us up at the airport, on the way to the villa, he took us to a supermarket so we could get some provisions, when we got to Pendamodi, he took us to his nephews Taverna (George's) for a welcome toast of Rakia ( a local beverage made from the pulp of the grape after the wine has been extracted, just a little stronger than gasoline) It was a fantastic glimpse into the real local life of Crete.
On night Adonis brought a chef to the villa and cooked us a traditional Greek meal, a wonderful salad, Dakos (twice baked bread similar to bruschetta topped with tomato and feta), a stew of lamb, vegetables, potatoes, in a very tasty lemon sauce, with toasted bread and Tzatziki sauce, for desert, a yogurt parfait. He prepared it from scratch in our kitchen while we talked about everything from marriage to politics. It was a fantastic meal, and a wonderful opportunity for cultural exchange.
The villa is a wonderful place to stay, just be aware, it is a secluded retreat. Pendamodi is a sleepy little village with not much to offer in the way of entertainment or night life. You will need a car so you can experience the charms of the island, and then return to recharge at the villa.
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