5 of the best luxury beach hotels in the Mediterranean

Ready to treat yourself to the ultimate luxury beach escape in Europe? From a stylish resort in Spain crowned the ‘Best Family Resort in the World’ to a timeless sanctuary in Greece that’s beloved by celebs, here are a few of our favourite all-out beach retreats in the Mediterranean.

Caramel Grecotel, Boutique Resort, Crete

As the name would suggest, this glamorous five-star haven promises a sweet stay in Crete. It’s hard to know where to cast your eyes as you enter the dazzling white lobby, as you take in the emerald-green velvet sofas, pops of colour and retro furnishings. The eclectic style runs throughout the resort; we love the gold-splashed lily-pad sun loungers, illuminated confetti pool and the safari-chic décor in the Panther Piano bar. There’s a mix of sleek suites and villas, all with hand-painted floor tiles and spa-inspired bathrooms, ranging from snug Sea View Bungalows to Four Bedroom Villas with direct access to the beach.

The vibrant town of Rethymnon is just a short drive away, but there are plenty of distractions on-site. There’s a spa where you can enjoy a muscle-melting massage on the open-air pavilion, yoga sessions at sunrise and thrilling watersports, plus an excellent kids’ club to keep little ones entertained.

Grecotel is praised for its legendary breakfast spreads, and you certainly won’t be disappointed here. There’s a veritable bounty of homemade bread, local honey, made-to-order eggs and tropical fruit. We highly recommend upgrading to the ‘Dine Club’ half board, which includes an unforgettable dining experience at a traditional Cretan farm and the option to dine at participating sister hotels throughout Crete.

Ikos Andalusia, Spain

With a string of successful resorts in Greece under its belt, the Ikos hotel brand has now firmly planted its roots in Spain, making waves on both the Costa Del Sol and Mallorca with two new hotel additions in recent years. The first of its kind on Spanish shores, Ikos Andalusia has an exclusive address to match its upscale vibe, nestled near the super-yachts of glitzy Marbella. Its arrival was met with acclaim, earning accolades like the ‘Best Family Hotel in the World’ and the ‘Best Hotel in Spain’ in the 2023 Tripadvisor Travellers’ Choice Awards.

The incredible inclusions here redefine the typical concept of an all-inclusive holiday. Included in the Infinite Lifestyle package are Michelin-star meals and local dining experiences, as well as over 300 premium wines and a unique MINI driving adventure. You could be forgiven for never wanting to leave, as alongside the vast selection of restaurants – one for every night of the week – there are eight beautifully designed pools, a spa oasis and practically an A-Z of activities from aqua aerobics to Zumba. In the evening, enjoy a fabulous show or shake your tail feathers till the early hours in the sultry nightclub. If you prefer your nights a little more low-key, retreat to your balcony for a private party for two – room service and a daily-replenished minibar is included in your all-inclusive stay.

Anassa, Cyprus

‘Anassa’ translates to ‘Queen’ in ancient Greek, and it’s a worthy title for this regal retreat. Designed in the style of a whitewashed village and hidden away on Cyprus' picturesque Akamas peninsula, this world-renowned resort oozes elegance with its palatial décor, top-notch service and couples and families appeal. The Roman-style spa takes the crown as the standout feature, with a highbrow menu of holistic treatments and detox programmes; we love the Thalasso bath therapy, which focuses on the therapeutic benefits of seawater.

When you’re not enjoying ‘me time’ in the spa, you can get active on the tennis courts, take a dip in one of the beautiful pools or work your way through the gourmet cuisine – a romantic evening in the cosy candlelit cavern, Basiliko, is not to be missed. For a taste of local life, you can sign up for a pottery class in the village square or enjoy authentic food, live music and folk dancing at the weekly Cypriot village fair.

Sani Club, Halkidiki

Tucked between pine forests and pristine beaches in the shadow of Mount Olympus, Sani Club has both a spectacular setting and stellar credentials as one of the best family resorts in Greece. You get the best of both worlds here; a secluded hideaway with everything you need onsite, coupled with access to four sister resorts for even more dining choices and facilities.

Between lounging by the heated infinity pool and sipping beachside beverages, you’re spoilt for choice with activities. Little ones can join a treetop adventure and master survival skills in the Bear Grylls Academy, or you can head out together to explore this picture-perfect pocket of Greece. As part of your VIP stay, many experiences are complimentary. Take a chauffeur-driven tour of the scenic surroundings, passing sunflower fields and olive groves to discover crumbling Byzantine churches, or join a sailing trip to explore the crystal-clear waters of the Aegean.

A top highlight here is the exceptional choice of cuisine; the resort offers a variety of restaurants included in the dine-around programme. Favourites include the farm-to-table fare at Pines and the authentic tastes of Italy in Macaroni, a traditional trattoria where you can savour wood-fired pizza paired with honey and thyme grappa. After dark, take a seat in the open-air theatre to enjoy the best of Broadway, then cap off the evening with cocktails in the bars of Sani Marina.

Blue Palace Elounda, Crete

Blue Palace Elounda is one of the most coveted hotels in the Med, drawing guests from royalty to A-list celebrities. Overlooking the mysterious island of Spinalonga and the glittering Aegean Sea, this boutique, minimalist resort is sculpted into the hillside, making for dreamy blue views from many of the nautical-inspired rooms. However, as enchanting as the glossy aesthetics and captivating setting may be, the soul of the resort is immersed in Cretan culture. This is brought to life through experiential travel opportunities, from cruising along the coast in a traditional Caique to touring charming villages in a vintage Cadillac.

The private white-pebble beach is easily reached by the fun-to-ride funicular lift, where you’ll also find a handful of the resort’s best restaurants. At Asia Deep Blue, chefs conjure up inventive Japanese dishes and sumptuous sushi, or head to Greek Taverna Blue Door for waterfront dining and the freshest seafood. Don’t miss the Friday night Cretan Feast, where you’ll indulge in mouthwatering mezze and “antikristo” lamb cooked over a bonfire, all while the soulful sounds of the Cretan lyra fill the air.


If you are looking for a Mediterranean holiday that has the wow factor, we’re here to help. Discover more of our luxurious hotels by browsing our Europe brochure or chat with our Personal Travel Experts, who are ready to tailor-make your perfect escape.

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This feature was updated on 26th March 2024. The information within this feature is correct to the best of our knowledge at the time of print. Feature by Heather Flanagan.

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