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“Some nice views, but overpriced and only partial shower”
Review of Aigialos Hotel

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Aigialos Hotel
Ranked #32 of 80 Hotels in Fira
Certificate of Excellence
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“Some nice views, but overpriced and only partial shower”
Reviewed 18 May 2011

In short, the view from MOST of the rooms is lovely, but the hotel is overpriced given the amenities. First, travelers considering the hotel should study the website and pictures of the views carefully before choosing. We did so and requested a specific room among the "Exclusive houses". On arrival we were shown to an "upgraded" room, i.e., a "Mansion house" - the one called Tramountana to be specific). However, upon seeing the Tramountana room it was clear that the view was not as good - between the room and the caldera was a telephone pole and a power line -- not exactly picturesque. Face it, you go to Santorini for the view. Moreover, the view to the right (north, I believe, was rather obscured) yet, that is the part of the caldera one really wants to see. So, we requested and eventually were given the room (Zefyros) that we chose -- for the view - originally. It was a big disappointment/annoyance that the room we specifically booked was not ready and we were left to wait quite a while for it to be cleaned and prepared. Turns out, as best we could tell, the reason the other room was an "upgrade" was that it had an actual stand up shower. The Zefyros room had less of a shower and more of what I would characterize as a "dog washing station", i.e., a shower head on a hose mounted about 3 feet off of the ground with no enclosure. I've travelled enough in Europe to know that this is not an unusual set up. However, I've just never paid 400 euros per night for a room without a stand up shower in Europe or anywhere else. That said, you go to Santorini for the view. However, for 400 euros per night in early May, I'd like a view and a decent shower. The hotel is lovely (though simple, bordering on rustic). The staff are very nice (but not particularly knowledgeable about restaurants, sights, tours, etc.). All in all, while I would stay there again for the view, I would first: (1) shop around other hotels more, (2) look for a room with a view and an actual shower, and (3) negotiate a little on the price outside of high season.

  • Stayed May 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
7 Thank rhinopeace
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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English first
Philadelphia, PA
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 May 2011

We thoroughly enjoyed our stay in Aigialos last July. We first stayed in Aigialos in 2004 and we make sure that we visit every time we are in Greece since then. I would say the highlight is the amazing views of the Aegean. Great service, very friendly and helpful staff.

  • Stayed July 2010, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank NickHillary
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Houston, Texas
Level 6 Contributor
80 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 April 2011

We stayed at the Aigialos hotel in October of 2010, just at the end of the season for Fira / Santorini, and it was delightful. We basically had the hotel to ourselves. The first night we stayed in the Notos house, which we'd booked, however it was a tad small, but still equipped with a lovely private balcony. The second day of our stay the hotel upgraded us to a much larger suite, equipped with a balcony off of the bedroom and a second balcony off of the living room / lounge. It was absolutely gorgeous. The views were out of this world, we spent almost as much time sitting on the balcony than out and about in town. For us, the highlight each morning was hearing the lovely little bells that sounded the arrival of the parade of donkeys, heading to their daily work on the steps down to the harbor. We'd hear the "windchime" sound, and rush outside to the balcony with our coffee to watch about 30 well-dressed donkeys head down the road below the hotel to their daily work. It was magical!
Breakfast each morning was delicious, the courtyard is so charming. The service is incredible and the rooms were very clean.

  • Stayed October 2010, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank amanda_n_byrum
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, UK
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 April 2011

My friends and I were treated like family at this very special hotel - the food was super, the rooms are typical of the Santorini architecture, and, of course, the views are out of this world. For that alone it is worth it.
Each room is uniquely furnished with antiques collected by the owner. We were able to have breakfast with views of the caldera. The manager greeted us specially and was on hand throughout our stay to help out.

  • Stayed August 2010, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
1 Thank Rion_London
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bangalore
2 reviews
Reviewed 16 December 2010

Aigialos is the perfect place for a first time visitor to Greece! My husband and I went there on our honeymoon in October. Jean Pierre and his staff are the most warm welcome wagon you'll ever receive. After a brief history class, he will guide you to everything worth seeing on the island. The rooms are charming with breathtaking views into the Caldera, although, if you are a born and bred luxury baby -you might not find all this quaintness adorable. And the nicest part is that they always upgrade you if there's a higher bracket room available. My husband and I loved it!

  • Stayed October 2010, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank KAVagh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 December 2010

My partner and I carefully study hotels before we travel. We like nice places. It's the one luxury we afford ourselves. I don't want stained linens, paper-thin towels, mold-filled bathrooms, unfriendly staff, and thrift-store furniture. So, we were excited to stay at the Aigialos. The rave reviews, the awards, and stunning images had us sold. We were duped. Aigialos is not a nice hotel. Don't be fooled.

The hotel sits on a charming spot with lovely views (almost panaromic views -- but for the abandoned construction site nearby). And, the property itself is comprised of several historic homes / apartments that now make up this hotel -- all interconnected by staircases and, in some instances, conjoined/shared balconys (not very private!). The staff is even friendly. Upon arrival, they presented us with fresh orange juice. They then explained the hotel's history and it's antique-filled rooms (which they said were not to everyone's liking.) My partner immediately looked at me and gave me his "oh no" look. I gave him my "it's ok, don't worry, this is an award winning hotel" look. I'm always the optimist.

Unfortunately, my partner's look was dead-on. We were shown to our room and immediately escorted to the balcony so we could take in the view. It was stuunning. However, it became clear why this was the first thing we were shown. It's the best thing about the room. A quick tour of the living quarters and the joy of the view was quickly diminished: A living-room with a day-bed covered in old, over-washed bedspreads that had unidentifiable stains. The furniture was old and rickety. I doubt Goodwill would accept it. Our bedroom was as terribly furnished. The bed's mattress was thin and hard. And, again, the linens were awful.

The bathroom was the size of a closet with old fixtures. And, it smelled. An odor that came from the bathroom's center-floor drain filled with sitting water.

We left our bags and decided to make the short walk to Fira for lunch...and strategize. I kept telling my partner, it's not that bad. We're only here two nights then it's back to Mykonos and The Belvedere (now, that's luxury!). After a glass of wine, I admitted he was right. We had to find another hotel. So, we spent the next 1/2 hour walking to several properties. We found one that was light years ahead of the Aigialos for comfort (and was 1/4 the price and only steps away). Our lucky day.

We walked back to the Aigialos, told the property's manager of our decision. He said we were not the first people to do this and he profusely apologized. He admitted that he was a recent hire -- as property manager -- and had tried to convince the owners to update the rooms but the owners refuse to do so. Why would they when they can earn such undeserved accolades?

The property manager then showed us another, larger room. My reaction was that it's only two times the size and two times the problem. Ugh. We checked out and were fully refunded our payments. So, I will give them props for that level of professionalism.

BTW, Oia and Fira are both jammed pack with tourist during high-season (and, to a lesser extent, through October). The stores are filled with mostly kitsch but , in my opinion, Oia is the better of the two towns. After sunset, gaze upon the town as the lights in the buildings start to come on. The white-washed homes glimmer like Chinese lanterns strewn along a hill. It truly is memorable. Even if crowded. And, we had an AMAZING meal in Oia at a restaurant called "1800" I recommend it. See, in the end, I am an optimist. Finally, I will note that I rarely write reviews but was compelled this time after receiving an email announcing that Aigialos received the 2010 Trip Advisor Award of Excellence.

  • Stayed September 2010, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
16 Thank needavacation65
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ohio
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 November 2010

Truly had a great experience at this hotel! We stayed in both Fira and Oia and I can honestly say I liked both for different reasons. In regards to this hotel, the nightly view of the sunset was unreal...I can't imagine a better view. The staff was very nice and went out of the way to make sure our stay was enjoyable! Even bought a good bottle of wine for us our last evening and opened it for us as we celebrated our anniversary by watching the sun go down! I would surely stay here again if I make it back to Santorini. Good location, nice & clean rooms, friendly staff, etc!

  • Stayed October 2010, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank youngm02
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Aigialos Hotel

Property: Aigialos Hotel
Address: Ypapantis street, Fira 847 00, Greece
Phone Number:
Region: Greece > South Aegean > Cyclades > Santorini > Fira
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#5 Family Hotel in Fira
#13 Romantic Hotel in Fira
#20 Luxury Hotel in Fira
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:5 star — Aigialos Hotel 5*
Number of rooms: 16
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Aigialos Collection consists of sixteen, renovated neoclassical houses that were originally the fine homes of the island's noble captain families. The architecture and design of the houses bring to life the traditional way of life of the island's nobility. Restored to perfection by master masons using local volcanic stone and coloured lime plaster, the houses are linked by cobbled walkways. Situated on the rim of the caldera, sheer cliffs that rise from the sea, the hotel overlooks the island's famed volcano. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Aigialos Hotel Fira
Aigialos Hotel Santorini/Fira

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