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Neilson Retreat Beachclub
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Reviews (642)
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317 - 322 of 642 reviews
Reviewed 29 August 2014

This is our 3rd neilson beach club holiday. We fancied a new venue and have had a wonderful holiday . The beach club is in a beautiful location but the facilities are lacking compared to our previous experience.
The pool is not really big enough and the tennis is disappointing compared to Aeolian village and phokaia in Foca.
Beware that the opportunity for tennis for children is very limited - although it does not say so in the brochure children under 15 yrs are limited to junior tennis for 45 mins for 4 days out of 7 on the top courts at 4pm with no shade!!!
Since my teenage boys are keen players this was a very disappointing development and needs to be made clearer in the brochure as is the minimum age for sailing and windsurfing . Be aware that sailing and windsurfing groups will clash with the tennis for children and they may in fact be unable to attend any of the tennis sessions . Hopefully neilson will look at this again as I am not the only guest to have been affected by this new 'ruling'.
The adult tennis groups could be better organised in terms of ability and this would have benefitted everyone.
The restaurant staff struggle to cope at peak times- after 30 mins still no water/ drinks for lunch!
So if you like steps and appreciate a fantastic sea view with v light winds for sailing come to Sivota.
The sunset flotilla was hugely enjoyable and waterskiing for the first time on flat gentle waters was amazing and exhilarating !
So, a very mixed bag....

  • Stayed: August 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank emma a
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 August 2014

We have just returned from a weeks holiday in Sivota, Greece. We had a brilliant holiday made particularly special by the superb staff team. We are both in our early 60s and throughout the week enjoyed sailing, windsurfing, kayaking, water skiing and swimming - the tuition was 'first class'. The food was equally superb, as was the service from the restaurant staff. We shall certainly be returning next year and thoroughly recommend Neilson holidays!

Room Tip: Garden rooms are best
  • Stayed: August 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
2  Thank Anne L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 August 2014

We have just returned from a wonderful fortnight at The Retreat.
The situation of the hotel is stunning, yes there are steps, but you wouldn't have the views without the hillside location!
Our children have never been in kids clubs and we worried our 8yr old wouldn't like Sharksters, we needn't have worried, our only downside of the holiday was that we didn't see as much of our boys as normal. The Nannies are incredibly patient and full of energy, they do a brilliant job.
The food and accommodation is excellent, we had garden interconnecting rooms which were lovely, and cleaned impeccably throughout our stay. The restaurant has lovely views and a great range of food.
We enjoyed eating out in Sivota on the non inclusive nights, it is a lovely, lively place within very short walking distance.
We also enjoyed the evening trip to Parga and the boat trip to Paxos and Anti-Paxos. This is such a gorgeous area, very beautiful.
In terms of activities, my husband gained level 1 and 2 dinghy sailing and level 1 windsurfing and he and my eldest son loved waterskiing. I tried beginners tennis and really enjoyed it, in our second week I attended the drills which were brilliant. The tennis team (Adam, Scott and Brindley) were very patient and supportive and I am hoping to continue playing tennis now I am back in the UK.
The fitness sessions are fantastic, Georgie has boundless energy and is so encouraging, I tried yogalates, ballet barre, zumba and circuits, all were excellent.
We absolutely loved our stay at The Retreat, we met some lovely people, tried new sports and had lots of fun in the bar, the only downside is that now my husband is a level 2 sailor he needs more wind than Sivota has to offer in order to progress. We are checking out other Neilson resorts for next year.

The whole ambience of The Retreat is very laid back

  • Stayed: August 2014, travelled with family
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank CMedcalfe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 August 2014

We have just got home from our first Neilson holiday at The Retreat and we had a brilliant time. The resort is beautiful - the views from our two inter-connecting rooms were stunning. Clear blue sea, beautiful scenery and the Neilson beach kit bobbing around in the water. Idyllic! The resort is built into the descent to the beach so of course there are steps and lots of them. Treat them as part of your fitness regimen!

The hotel itself is great - spotlessly clean thanks to Anna and her friendly team. There is a new spa for this season offering gorgeous treatments with Temple Spa products - all of the girls were lovely - very helpful and accommodating. There's also a couple of fitness rooms in this area with some basic equipment and a welcome air conditioning unit!

We were very impressed with the quality of the food - George and his team have put together a delicious menu for lunch and dinner and everything you could think of for breakfast. The restaurant staff were all friendly, super efficient and always ready for a chat. Special mention for Matty and Ruby who brightened up our meal times! The BBQ on the non inclusive Fridays was good fun with the usual high standard of food and loads of choice.

The atmosphere around the hotel was brilliant - we met some lovely people and our kids made some great friends. Every single member of staff that we came into contact with was charming - Neilson - you have certainly nailed it in the recruitment department!

We went on a half day yacht cruise with Will which was a very relaxing afternoon and great fun. True to form, Will was knowledgable, interesting and enthusiastic and a pleasure to spend time with.

The activities programme is fully packed but there's no pressure to get involved if you don't want to. You can do as much or as little as you want to. We did a bit of tennis, some great bike rides with James and Georgie - the ride down from the cake shop is fab - and my husband managed to get his RYA levels 1 and 2 signed off fully inspired by the sailing team who were all knowledgeable and enthusiastic. A special thanks to Laura, Sarah and Crystal for their patience and for the golden rudder on our last night.

Some people have commented that there's a Neilson 'hard sell' at the welcome meeting, but I didn't get that. The meeting itself is a bit overwhelming if you're new to it but go with it - it's an hour out of your holiday and if you're lucky enough to be at the Retreat for two weeks, the booking forms open on Sunday before the new guests arrive so you can choose what you want to do in a more relaxed way. There are also comments about the price of things but I didn't think it was extortionate 12-15 euros for a nice bottle of wine - I pay more than that in my local pub.

The staff without exception said openly how well they were treated by the company and that's why (in my opinion) the atmosphere is so fab. We had a beer with some of them on their nights off and they were all happy to be hassled by my little girl into singing or dancing even though they weren't actually at work.

I'm struggling to find anything negative to say. I suppose the pool could be bigger, but I always managed to get a sun lounger and there are extra beds at the ski and yacht pontoons. Take insect repellent. There are mozzies that like to feed day and night but that's obvious - it's Greece in August. There weren't a lot of smokers, but you could smoke in the bar which was a bit irritating on a couple of occasions - a no smoking policy might be an idea.

I think the highlight of the holiday for me was watching our kids flourish in Hot Shots. They tried and loved: waterskiing, wind surfing, kayaking, sailing, paddle boarding - the list goes on. It's pricey, but worth every penny. Will and Callum were absolute stars - and great company - they gave the kids confidence when they wobbled, coached, encouraged and praised them when they did well. They taught them silly songs and managed to pack a lot of fun into their 6 days. Their synchronised swimming display was legendary and should be added to the weekly entertainment programme! They were so much more than child care providers - more like two really cool older brothers. Fantastic role models - thank you both :)

Same time next year...? Think so!

Room Tip: Garden rooms are lovely - the 500s, 600s and 700s are brand new for 2014 with fab views apparently.
  • Stayed: August 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Service
3  Thank Amanda B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 August 2014

Sivota is a beautiful resort. The highlight is the enclosed stretch of calm sea, with a sandy spit across which you wade to get to the sailing dinghies, windsurfers, kayaks and stand up paddle boards. When we were there in August this had heated up and was like a vast outdoor swimming pool. The downside to this natural beauty is that it attracts others: the beach is not exclusive to Neilson guests and big boats rolled in at about 11am with lots of Greek and Italian sunbathers. Even so, the Neilson guests and these day trippers seem to inhabit the same space without ever getting in each other's way.

I windsurfed for the first time and sailed dinghies which I'd done lots before. The wind was very light - which was great for beginning to windsurf but frustrating for sailing. On the other hand, the calm meant it was easy and fun to grab one of the many stand up paddle boards. The teaching and other beach staff were also excellent.

My son had a great time in the Sea Badgers kids club. The nannies were super friendly and made him feel quickly at home. As well as games, crafts and artwork, they spent lots of time in the pool, going sailing and kayaking. And he's only five!

The food in the restaurant was tasty, fresh and plentiful. On two of the non-inclusive nights we went into Sivota town. There's a handy €2 water taxi from the hotel. In town get beyond the seafront tourist traps for a lively scene.

The major downside of the hotel is that it's built into a steep hillside. Trekking up and down the steps in the heat soon feels like a chore.

  • Stayed: August 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
Thank Thomas B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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