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“Fabulous holiday, value for money apartments”

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Hotel Irida Plakias
Ranked #8 of 24 Hotels in Plakias
Bolton
Level 2 Contributor
9 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Fabulous holiday, value for money apartments”
Reviewed 28 August 2013

I think we stayed here at the same time as blowinfree, and I agree with the vast majority of what they said. The no-frill rooms are extremely clean, and the beds very comfortable, it's a good base for exploring this part of the island. It was perfect for our requirements.We had 2 apartments for my husband and myself and our teenage kids. The owners are lovely and friendly, and run a relaxed and laid back establishment. They were always on hand, and immediately fixed the kid's shower when they dropped it on the floor and broke it - teenagers! We enjoyed the pool and garden area - again it was spotless and the gardens were pretty. We stayed for 2 weeks, and some of the days in the first week were very windy, but we had done our research and knew this was a possibility, and so were not surprised. In fact, we quite enjoyed the wildness of it, as it was so hot and the sun was still shining! We tended to take other trips on these days rather than go to the beach as we had hired a car, and enjoyed Rethymnon (45 mins away), Chania (1.5 -2 hours), Aquaplus water park (2 hours), Preveli monastry and Palm Beach, Lake Kournas and, my favourite, Loutro (not all in the first week!). By the second week, the wind had gone, so we had a few lovely days lazing on the beach. Damnoni beach, about a km away was great, a bit sandier and more sheltered, and you can hire pedaloes and kayaks, which was great fun. Yes, the transfer was long, and we agreed that we would not have liked that if we had only been on a week holiday. The transfer back was shorter in duration. All in all, we had a fabulous holiday. Crete is a wonderful island and we would love to explore it further. We loved Plakias, a quiet, charming little town, surrounded by majestic mountains. It has enough tavernas so that you could eat somewhere different every night. We liked Scirocco (good food and great sunset!) and Kri- Kri for superb pizza.
I would definitely return to the south coast, it seems less commercialized than some bits of the north and was more our sort of thing - we like to explore, and next time I'd like to walk some of the gorges.
I would heartily recommend Irida if you want a decent, no-frills base, but which hits all the right notes for the all important atmosphere, good night's sleep and cleanliness.

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled with family
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2 Thank Flickstermixter
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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liverpool
Level 4 Contributor
13 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 August 2013

Having just returned from week in Plakias, staying at the Irida Apartments, I can only echo the fulsome praise and glowing compliments from the other reviewers regarding the Irida. The rooms are small, but comfortable, with a wet-room style shower room / WC and decent kitchen facilities. What really makes the Irida special, however, are the little touches -- the really comfortable mattresses, the spotless cleaning...even down to the quilted loo paper! The apartments' strongest suit, however, is its lovely pool area. Surrounded by hills and an olive orchard, the setting is lovely, the sunbeds are really comfortable and the pool is a decent size and spotlessly clean. Everything at the Irida runs like clockwork under the friendly and efficient management of Maria and Manolis. They really put their heart and soul into this place -- and it shows! In an ideal world the apartments would be set a little further back from the road, but it didn't bother us too much and the pool area is located at the back and is nice and quiet.

The resort of Plakias is charming and has a nice relaxed feel about it. There are around twenty or so tavernas and several bars to choose from, some of which front onto the sea. We went to a different taverna every night and all bar one (Muses) was of good quality and reasonably priced. None of them really had that 'wow factor', though, mainly due to the fact that we love our seafood and although all the fish is locally caught, the seafood (shrimps, octopus etc) is largely frozen and 'brought in'. A quick day trip to Rethymnon, where the seafood was fresh and the mixed fish dishes on a different level, revealed the shortcomings of the menus in Plakias (although the prices in Rethymnon were similarly higher!) Best taverna in Plakias was the family-run Gorgona Taverna with its simply brilliant mousaka and delicious lamb kleftiko. Pity we only discovered the place on our last night! The beach was OK...nothing special -- a bit steep going into the sea and the water was choppy (see below) so nobody ventured more than about ten metres out.

OK, that's the good stuff. Now for the two things that didn't go quite so well. The transfer from the airport to the apartments was dreadful. Having decided against buying pricey snacks on the flight over (no meal provided), there were no refreshments available in the arrivals lounge at Heraklion Airport. We then had to sit on a coach for an hour, waiting for the Birmingham flight to arrive and join us. The transfer then took another three hours, with the coach disappearing into every single resort en route to drop people off. At Bali we took twenty-five minutes squeezing through the narrow, twisting streets in an enormous coach just to drop one person off! Bonkers! We finally arrived at the Irida, frazzled and exhausted having not had anything to eat or drink for eleven hours! The experience was not a deal-breaker for us, but we would think long and hard about going through that ordeal again. So, be warned -- take some food with you and / or eat something on the plane. Other people had a slightly shorter transfer time than us in a minibus, but it will be two hours minimum.

The other aspect of the holiday which didn't work for us was the wind in Plakias. We were told by people who lived there that during July and August the wind often gets up to virtually gale force. This summer seemed to be particularly bad with the wind closing the beach for a couple of days and making even lounging by the pool difficult, with clothes and belongings that weren't anchored to the ground flying everywhere. Even when the beach was open, the wind whipped up the sand and 'sand-blasted' every bit of your body. Only Crete's south coast seems to be affected by this. On a day trip to the North coast there was only a gently breeze. You can hear the wind howling all night at bad times. Bear it in mind...a bit of breeze is very welcome, but we both felt that the three days of howling wind we experienced took the shine off the holiday a bit.

Overall, we would still recommend Plakias -- probably not just for one week, however, due to the transfer issues. We would love to go back to Crete next summer - it's a big, interesting island with lots to explore - but we will look for somewhere on the North coast and a bit closer to the airport!

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank blowinfree
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
14 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 98 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 August 2013

Stayed her for a week in August.
The fellow guests very quiet decent sorts of people.
No music around the pool.How refreshing!
The rooms are small,basic and well maintained.
Cleaned well every day.
Great location.
Nearest shops and restaurants are minutes away down the road.
Plakias itself is nice enough.
Its starting to fray at the edges with new apartments at the east end and billboards advertising more to be built.
There weren't many British people around town.Seemed to be mainly French,German and Russians
The nearest supermarket to the studios is excellent.Reasonably priced with a lot of choice.
Did a lot of walking and birdwatching around the gorge,Souda, and Damnoni Bay[ see report on the Plakias forum]
The transfer is a pain.Took around 3 hours each time.Mind you it gives you a chance to see the rest of the island!
All in all a pleasant quiet week.
No complaints.

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank larkspur12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sweden
Level 5 Contributor
51 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 August 2013

Large room with a balcony, Vewry comfortable beds. Effective AC. Good Bathroom. A few times hot water a bit cool though. Nice pool and a really good breakfast. about 5 minutes walk to town or beach. Easy safe parking,Really good price. Owners are nice and freindly.
They have Free wifi but it does not work in the room. Only in pool area and about half the times we tried it it did not work. We did not complain though.

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Swede_Sunlover
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
West Bromwich, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 5 August 2013

After a long and tiring transfer at 6.30am we arrived at hotel irida,plakias and what turned out to be, after this bad start,a wonderful relaxing week at this lovely hotel and resort.Many thanks to Maria , Manolis & family for there hospitality .Hotel irida is well positioned in plakias a short walk from the taverners and beach and well stocked supermarkets.The hotel is small and quiet,well maintained and very clean with pool and outside eating area,our room had all we needed.There are lots of taverners in plakias all seem to be reasonably priced but the best meals we had were on our balcony prepared by Maria& Manolis.The Olympic rep Les was excellent, knowledgeable and enthusiastic,thanks Les! We must mention the wind that is a feature of plakias cool and refreshing but gusty and for us uncomfortable at times on the beach ,it would not put us off returning already planning.

  • Stayed July 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Richard P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bury, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
42 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 July 2013

Ideally positioned for both beach and town Irida is a well kept, small development of studios with picturesque gardens and setting. On arrival the friendly owner showed us to a clean room that includes the usual style bathroom, kitchen and balcony layout you’d expect in Greece. Safe and air conditioning were extra but in July we found that we didn’t need the cooler air. The room was cleaned every day and bed linen and towels changed every other day. There was a nice pool to the rear but we didn’t use it, preferring to take the five minute walk to the beach where a pair of sun beds and parasol would cost five Euros per day.
The beach has lots of space and is well kept by the man who collects the money. Each morning the sand is watered down, beds are straightened and any litter is collected. There is a constant breeze in Plakias but that only helps to make the hot weather more comfortable. The far end, away from the town, under the cliffs is without doubt the best part although this is also the nudist beach but there are no obligations and everyone was courteous and friendly. There are showers on the beach and a beach bar for your ice cold drink at the end of the afternoon. Worthy of note is an exceptional taverna called Paligremnos sat just behind the beach bar. It boasts a beautiful garden that provides lots of shade and the food and service were excellent.
Night life in Plakias is centred on the twenty or so restaurants that look over the bay. The standard is generally very good with a meal for two, including half a litre of house wine, about thirty Euros. Everyone has their own favourites but our best experience was in Atlantis where the “special” mussels were delicious. There are three bars playing “loudish” music all with first floor balconies where holidaymakers of all ages can enjoy a drink, look out over the bay and “people watch” until it’s time to make your way back to Irida. Ostraco bar was our favourite and we spent many hours looking over the bustling street watching the cars, bikes and people carefully avoid each other like a well choreographed dance.
Plakias is surrounded by a spectacular mountain range and there are well marked walks in each direction to other small resorts and beaches. There are numerous offices all selling the same trips including boat trips and guided gorge walks. If you don’t feel up to the ten mile walk through Samaria Gorge try the five mile guided river walk which ends at Preveli beach, a really pleasant day out, returning by boat, all under the professional supervision and interesting guide, Christian.
If you crave the bright lights of Malia, Plakias is not for you but if you want to relax on quiet beaches, enjoy good food each night with a glass or two wine then Irida is a choice that will not disappoint.

  • Stayed July 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank SummerseatGreen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
England
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 June 2013

Fantastic apartments, immaculately clean, and the most comfortable beds we have ever had on holiday. Maria and Manolis are fabulous hosts, nothing is too much trouble for them. We booked with Olympic and the rep, Les, was very friendly. This was our first time in Plakias and we will certainly be returning to these apartments but next time I wont make the mistake of only booking for 1 week - it wasnt enough!

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank Kay-Tony
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel Irida Plakias

Property: Hotel Irida Plakias
Address: Rethymno, Plakias, Crete 740 60, Greece
Region: Greece > Crete > Rethymnon Prefecture > Plakias
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Kitchenette Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #8 of 24 Hotels in Plakias
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3 star — Hotel Irida Plakias 3*
Number of rooms: 9
Also Known As:
Hotel Irida Plakias Crete

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