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“Not Dubai 5*.... but we absolutely loved it!” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of St. Nicolas Bay Resort Hotel & Villas

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St. Nicolas Bay Resort Hotel & Villas
Ranked #1 of 100 Hotels in Agios Nikolaos
Certificate of Excellence
Aberdeen, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
49 reviews
47 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 132 helpful votes
“Not Dubai 5*.... but we absolutely loved it!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 October 2011

LOCATION:
4/5: This depends on what your priorities are on holiday… if you prefer to be in the heart of the action, this may not be for you!
We loved it because it has gorgeous views, very well-kept grounds, and options for sun-bathing (pool-side / terraces cut into the rocks leading down to the sea / small beach area).
The hotel sits on a promontory, about 30-35 minutes walk to the centre of Agios Nikolaos, and we enjoyed a few morning walks into town for a wander round. In the evening, we took a taxi into town as it’s only 6 Euros each way.
There is a supermarket about 10-15 minutes walk away, at the Mirabello Beach (walk round our bay, turn right after the Crystal and Ormos hotels and it’s another 5 mins walk, on the left.)

FACILITIES:
4 ½ /5: Fantastic! Outdoor swimming pool, spa with indoor swimming pool, direct access to beach, water sports on hand…
The layout of the hotel is quite sprawling, with reception areas, a bar and two of the restaurants close to the entrance of the hotel, and then the accommodation leading away from that, in low rise (2/3 storey) villa-type buildings.

SERVICE:
5/5: Management, reception, concierge, housekeeping, bar and restaurant staff were all so welcoming, cheerful, pleasant and helpful. Top notch!

ROOMS:
4/5: This is Greek 5*, but we had everything we needed, and liked the simplicity of the accommodation. We were lucky enough to be upgraded from a room to a junior suite, with patio doors leading onto the terrace, and view of the sea in the distance.
No traffic noise to prevent you from getting to sleep in this hotel, unlike some in the centre of town, I would imagine!
Our split-level suite was freshly decorated, medium-sized and clean, with AC, mini bar, TV, well equipped bathroom with complimentary toiletries, modern fittings and shower over the bath. We had a separate toilet, which is handy, and also a separate small dressing area with wardrobes.
A couple of minor issues were reported to Management and (after a gentle reminder!), they had a couple of tradesmen on the job for us.

BREAKFAST RESTAURANT:
4 ½ /5: Breakfast was buffet style - a lovely choice of fresh fruit, cereals, breads, pastries, croissants, cheese, cold meats.
There were also hot servers with the usual cooked breakfast items, and a chef who would make an omelette etc to your taste.
I got into the habit of ordering fresh pancakes (crepe style) every morning, and then adding some of their delish honey and fresh fruit – fabulous!

OTHER HOTEL RESTAURANTS:
Ah, now here’s where we had a bit of an issue (though I’m very reluctant to say anything negative about the hotel!)
We used the pool restaurant on a couple of occasions for lunch. Tasty and well cooked, but overpriced (you may spot a theme here!)
We used the buffet restaurant once. I thought the food was absolutely fine, but nothing spectacular and we certainly didn’t think it was worth the €35 per person price!!
We also ate at the Greek restaurant evening on the night they had a BBQ and Greek dancing. We may have chosen badly (we both took something from the BBQ rather than the a la carte menu) but again we didn’t think the standard was worthy of the €30 price tag.
Sadly, after being stung with the cost versus quality issues on two occasions, we opted not to try the third restaurant, and decided to eat outwith the hotel for the remaining evenings.

There are numerous excellent restaurants in town. Try La Strada for excellent Greek and Italian food at very reasonable prices, or for a splurge night, treat yourself to Migomis overlooking the lagoon – superb!
There are also 4 or 5 restaurants about a 15-20 min walk away from the hotel, on the route into town which are good (can particularly recommend the Avra – try the Meze meal for two at an amazing €20, and a carafe of house wine at €4!)

SUMMARY:
Note to Management – we loved your hotel, but (please treat this as constructive criticism only!) if you were to lower the prices for your food, drinks, spa treatments and watersports, we are convinced that your restaurants, bars, spa and water activities will be busier and more profitable!
However, though we’re don’t tend to re-visit a holiday destination, we have both said that we can definitely see ourselves returning here for a week… so I think that speaks volumes!

  • Stayed September 2011, travelled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
9 Thank AvidHolidaymaker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (158)
Date | Rating
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  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Greek first
  • Italian first
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English first
London
Level Contributor
7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 October 2011

We stayed at St Nicolas Bay resort early October 2011. We rented a car and drove from Heraklion. Fairly easy to find providing you dont venture into the one way systems of Agios Nicolaos.

The porter that greats you is excellent. Smiling and ever helpful. Check-in was straightforward and we were quickly put in our rooms. We travelled as 4 adults and a 6 month old.

The rooms are nice. They look out over the sea towards the other side of crete. Very nice. We had buildings in front but the design of the resort is excellent. You never seem to be in another persons view so it feels very private.

Most days started with buffet breakfast and a menu choice of hots. The family struggled a little bit with getting exactly what they wanted. For example, the food was often warm rather than hot. The bacon not cooked enough or similar small problem. We thought it would have been better to let the guests go to the cook where you could instruct to your liking and know the food was hot.... a suggestion.

Days can be spent on site at the pool reading your books overlooking and swimming in the sea. The private beach is about 20 paces long so dont expect romantic walks.

One thing we didnt like was the water sports. The cost was extortionate. We only saw one family use a kayak towards the end of their stay. Shame because they had lots on offer, just silly prices.

Lunch we took outside at a taverna. There are many to choose from and are very reasonable.

Dinner was excellent. A buffet with everything, then again, a choice of hot meal.

My wife struggled a bit with the baby food that was made but by the end of the stay it was working well.

The staff are all very good. The dinnner and breakfast crew were very friendly and really did try their best. Our only complaint would have been about one particular waitress. She was very grumpy and unhelpful. Managing to spill our wine one evening and all we got out of her was "bravo" before she walked off. We did complain. Just make sure you dont sit in her tables!

They gym is adequate for a quick workout but dont expect a full routine.

The spa looked inviting but we didnt use any treatments. Again, the prices were heavy.

Finally, the other guests.
Unfortunately, 50% were quite unfriendly - I think they were german. They do not say hello as you walk past them. Maybe it was me.....
The ones that did want to converse were very nice.

  • Stayed October 2011, travelled with family
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank D70_X
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hampshire, UK
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 October 2011

My partner and I returned on 23rd September after a disappointing two week stay at the St. Nicholas Bay hotel. The hotel itself is nice enough but certainly not the 5* it purports to be. Most of the staff are ok but one of the breakfast restaurant managers (of which there are several) was downright rude when my partner asked for the breakfast menu and simply pointed to the buffet and motioned that we should help ourselves. Service is also rushed. The food and drinks in each of the restaurants was extortionately expensive (for example, 24 euros for a club sandwich). There were no tea and coffeemaking facilities in the rooms and a very limited amount of English speaking tv channels (BBC World News being one which was frozen all the time we were there. We also had to ask for our room to be cleaned on one occasion despite our having been out all day. The location is not at all covenient - a very hot boring walk into Agios Nikolaos with nothing much to look at or a 6 euro each way taxi ride (notwithstanding there was a two day taxi drivers strike while we were there) and there are no conveniently situated supermarkets.. On the plus side, the pool was beautiful and the views from the rear of the hotel lovely. We have stayed at 5* hotels on other Greek Islands and found them to be superb but if we travel to Crete again, I'd choose Elounda over Ag Nik, and certainly would not return to the St Nicholas Bay Hotel.

  • Stayed September 2011, travelled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank lingold
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ubud
Level Contributor
24 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 October 2011

In June, my daughter and I had the good fortune to stay in St Nicolas Bay Resort, for almost a week.
I just want to thank all the staff for a magical experience. Firstly, we found the lack of signs and commercialism around the grounds of the hotel charming. The architecture and art collection stunning. It truly was like staying with family in a gorgeous location. We were surprised that so many of the guests were regular visitors, some having come 25 times, but they also were very friendly and helpful to us new-comers.

Two highlights.. The beach was breathtaking- pristine, picturesque, and very well equipped with relaxing lounges and great service.
And the other would have to be the FOOD & WINE! Being welcomed with a platter of Baclava on arrival really set the mood for the dining experience. I commend the decision to feature only Greek food and especially Cretan specialities. What a treat, and paired with local wines, we couldn’t be happier.

My final memory.. the BEST hotel soap ever.. made with local Olive Oil, I think…. It really shows the attention to the smallest details. All staff showed true professionalism- the best I have experienced anywhere. I hope I will be able to return sometime soon.

  • Stayed June 2011, travelled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank janet1042
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 October 2011

The essential positives: an exceptional location, an elegant and well designed hotel, very well maintained, relaxed ambience and "good guests", very good but informal service, all grades of room offering something special. The rooms are stylish and uncluttered.

A special thanks to the front of house and Nicos who is very committed to making things work for his guests. This is one of those hotels where you should ask for advice and help if you need it.

We loved breakfast and lunch in the Blue Bay. The "Kafenion" greek restaurant often has very good fish, and the Minotaur restaurant is definitely worth trying. The evening buffet is perhaps a bit too samey for the price. Prices are high, but comparable to the more upmarket places in Agios - its expensive in greece now! There are good and cheaper places to find of course (there is a Greek/ pizza combo at the top of the main tourist street in Agios which was the best we found, but there are other good choices in the TA entries below). You can also use the room service menu in the evenings - they put on a good show, and it is (relatively) good value.

If you like the sea, there is some good snorkelling going up the coast - a lot better than many med locations, and there are 2 dive schools which you can access through the hotel if you want.

Many of the staff have worked there for many years, and they really do work well as a team.

Try a cocktail by the sea or on the rooftop terrace, both lovely spots.

simon w

Room Tip: For the simple double rooms, talk about what you want when booking - some have a more open aspect an...
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  • Stayed September 2011, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank simonlondon1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about St. Nicolas Bay Resort Hotel & Villas

Property: St. Nicolas Bay Resort Hotel & Villas
Address: Thessi Nissi 10, Agios Nikolaos, Crete 721 00, Greece
Phone Number:
Region: Greece > Crete > Lasithi Prefecture > Agios Nikolaos
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#1 Luxury Hotel in Agios Nikolaos
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Agios Nikolaos
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Agios Nikolaos
#1 Spa Hotel in Agios Nikolaos
#2 Family Hotel in Agios Nikolaos
#4 Romantic Hotel in Agios Nikolaos
Price range (per night): ₹ 15,978 - ₹ 42,853
Hotel Class:5 star — St. Nicolas Bay Resort Hotel & Villas 5*
Number of rooms: 107
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A spacious Balcony or Terrace in each Room or Suite provides a private and secluded open air lounge to sit and relax with great sea views.- From the secluded privacy of your room balcony / terrace only 2 minutes walk through flower scented gardens to reach the private sandy beach and sunbathing terraces. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Saint Nicolas Bay Resort Hotel And Villas
Saint Nicolas Bay Hotel
St. Nicolas Bay Resort Hotel & Villas Agios Nikolaos, Crete

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