A blueprint for slow-paced living on a sandy strip of Cretan coastline
Grecotel reimagines the classic Greek sugar-cube architecture at White Palace, giving it an edgy, contemporary spin. A handful of sail-white buildings are dotted around a saltwater pool with sea views, connected by a web of paths winding through manicured gardens. Inside could pass for an art gallery, with light, open spaces and paper-bright walls. The Blue Flag beach is a 1000 metre stretch of pebbles and sand and there's one main pool as well as a kids' pool. Speaking of children, there's plenty to keep younger guests happy thanks to the fantastic Grecoland programme that features three age-appropriate levels - GrecoKids for 4 to 6 year olds, Greco Juniors for 7 to 12 year olds and GrecoTeens for older kids. You'll also have access to the nearby Aqua Park - Kingdom of Poseidon (transport not included).
This is a foodie haven, with six restaurants rustling up everything from Cretan specialities and Greek favourites to Italian classics and Pan Asian specialities. There’s also a beachfront gelaterie for generous scoops of creamy artisan ice cream and a pâtisserie filled with the enticing aroma of baking. Throw in four drinking dens – sunset lounge, beach house, wine bar, garden theatre – and you won’t be left wanting, particualarly as many premium brand drinks are included as part of the LUXURY MADE EASY all-inclusive package. We love that you can also visit Grecotel's farm, Agrecofarm, which is located in the hills above the coastal town of Rethimno (transport is not included). Here, surrounded by vines and olive trees, you can dine on traditional Cretan dishes created using produce that's been grown and raised locally at The Taverna. As well as having dinner, you'll get to go on an early evening tour of the farm.
Rooms are all white, accented with splashes of palm green, coral pink and oceanic blues in every shade – teal lamps, topaz cushions, cobalt sun chairs. Snow-bright orchids and billowing fabrics add a hint of romance, while private balconies or terraces frame enticing vistas. Pick a Double Room for lush garden or mountain views, upgrade to a Superior Guestroom for a spacious pad overlooking the sparkling sea, or book a Petit Yali Seafront Suite for a tranquil haven with access to a shared pool. Alternatively, go all out with a Villa Luxe Yali, a beachfront hideout sleeping up to four, with suite-to-sand access and your very own private heated pool – great for families or small groups.
Near Rethymnon, between Heraklion and Chania
Good to know
263 rooms, suites and villas
• Visit the Eleutherna Archaeological Park, where crumbling villas, baths and temples are dotted across a narrow spur on Mount Idea* • Venture to Heraklion to see its big-hitting archaeological museum and the nearby Palace of Knossos* • Wander Rethymnon’s labyrinthine old town at dusk, so you can linger after for the lively after-dark scene • Take the kids to the nearby AquaPark - Kingdom of Poseidon (transport to park*).
6 restaurants, 4 bars, pâtisserie, gelateria, espresso counter
LUXURY MADE EASY all inclusive • Buffet breakfast at Ventanas il Mar or Greek breakfast at Taverna • Lunch at a choice of four restaurants - Ventanas il Mar, Fico d'India, Taverna and By the Pool • Dinner at a choice of 8 restaurants - Ventanas il Mar, Taverna, Divan Restaurant, The White 24/7 or Sunset Lounge Bar • Chocolates, pastries and other sweet treats at Pâtisserie & Chocolaterie (10.30am-2.30pm and 6.30pm-10pm) • Ice cream, gelato and café frappe at the Creperie - Gelateria (10.30am-6pm) • Selected premium brand drinks including cocktails, juices and a wide selection of local and international wines • WhatsApp concierge service.
*Denotes local charge