A cool twist on traditional Cycladic villas, with a 400-year-old wine cellar restaurant.
Privacy is a rare privilege in Santorini. This stunning hideout breaks the mould. Old stone walls wrap around Vedema, a Luxury Collection Resort, in the medieval town of Megalohori. Olive trees and huge ceramic pots line the outdoor pool; bright pink clouds of bougainvillea cascade over a pergola, sheltering the handful of low-slung sofas and day beds beneath. An outdoor hot tub, shaded by olive trees and bougainvillea, is next to a tiny bar serving drinks to guests in the bubbling whirlpool.
A cluster of wooden-shuttered villas and low-rise houses are dotted around an old mansion and 400-year-old cave wine cellar, which has been turned into an atmospheric restaurant – all rough stone arches and flickering candles. All suites open onto a terrace, with interiors that could be plucked from a glossy travel magazine. Think traditional Cycladic architecture complemented by Berber rugs and Aztec cushions, and finished with original antiques and original artwork; it all feels thoughtful and personal. Pick an Aegean Suite for an outdoor hot tub or go all out with a Presidential Villa for your own private pool. Elsewhere, sunken pathways lead to a spa, a cosy cocoon sculpted into the volcanic rock.
Guests can take the complimentary shuttle to Vedema’s sister hotel for epic Santorini sunsets. If it’s these views you’re desperate for, you can hire out the Nafsika Estate, with a five-bedroom villa poised on the volcanic caldera. Here, you can watch the sun drop seaward in a whorl of lilac and pink, right in front of your own pool and terrace. Sleeping up to ten, it comes with a private butler and Executive Chef, an outdoor barbecue and fully equipped kitchen.
In the medieval town of Megalohori, a 20-minute drive from Fira
Good to know
Minimum stay: 3 nights in the Nafsika Estate.
• See the Bronze Age archaeological site of Akrotiri* • Head to the dramatic black volcanic beach at Perivolos • Hike the picturesque trail from Fira to Oia for dizzying sea views • Wander around the pretty town of Megalochori, with its tavern-lined square and honeycomb of cliffside caves.
2 restaurants, bar, wine bar
Breakfast at the main restaurant.
*Denotes local charge