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“5 ladies in a 5 star hotel”

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Asterion Hotel Suites and Spa
Ranked #35 of 69 Hotels in Platanias
Marlow, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
“5 ladies in a 5 star hotel”
Reviewed 11 September 2013

We decided to book a few days in Crete in September. The Asterion ticked all the boxes for us. We flew into Heraklion and pre-booked a taxi straight to the hotel which took about 2 hours. We had emailed the hotel for advise on transfer and they replied with a few helpful suggestions so we had a good feel of their willingness to please before we got there. Chania airport is much nearer but we wanted to fly on days that flights did not go into Chania. Coming by taxi meant we could enjoy seeing a bit of Northern coastline on the way to the hotel. On arrival the receptionist greeted us with enthusiasm in a bright turquoise uniform shirt to match the colour of the beautiful pool in the background - We were delighted to be offered an upgrade from two rooms with garden views to two adjoining suites with private plunge pool and sunbathing area - fantastic 5 star accommodation. Sheets, bath and beach towels changed everyday. Breakfast was continental with a vast choice of anything that took your fancy. Freshly made omelettes, boiled eggs, delicious pastries, fresh fruit, local yogurt and honey and much more. The service was excellent - every member of staff was friendly and went out of their way to please. The swimming pool was a joy to swim in and there was just a short walk to the beach and a swim in the sea for those who preferred the salt water. The beach had pebbles so a good idea to remember shoes for swimming - the sea water was cool and envigorating. The food was fantastic and available all day and late into the evening. The poolside bar which served a variety of attractive cocktails and deliciously strong cappuccino stayed open til midnight for those who would eat in the restaurant or a la carte restaurant or go out into Platanias for a meal or shopping and come back for a night cap in the tranquility of the hotel. The local bus service is every half an hour - the bus stop is a short walk to the main road and a few hundred yards along the road and this goes all the way into Chania stopping a few times on the way. We stayed quite late when we went to Chania one evening and easily found a taxi to take us back to our haven. Taxi drivers were so friendly and full of information. One day we hired bikes from reception and enjoyed a lovely day cycling along as far as we could on the beach path. We might have hired a car to explore the island if we had been staying longer so a car would be an advantage.
The beauty of this hotel is the tranquility and beautiful decor which is enhanced by fresh flower in reception and artwork on the walls by the very talented owner. She was so attentive and friendly making us feel so special and pampered.
We did not need to use the gym facilities to relax as swimming in the perfectly sized azure blue pool and lounging on the sun beds with a poolside bar was quite enough relaxation for us.
We really felt very special and well looked after and would highly recommend this hotel for anyone who prefers peaceful retreat away from the hustle and bustle of tourists and noisy cars.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank Jilli W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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296 reviews from our community

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Cairo
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 6 September 2013 via mobile

Very nice hotel directly on the beach and with good breakfast and the room with the jacuzzi is so romantic but the hotel is not in platanias and the bus station is far from the hotel and a bit scary at night.....

  • Stayed August 2013
    • Value
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    • Rooms
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Helpful?
1 Thank ElBadawy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bristol, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 August 2013

After a very long journey through the town by a bus driver who was driving 10 mph all the way, we were very relieved to arrive at our destination.
On initial arrival the hotel looked ok and we were greeted by a friendly and helpful member of staff who checked us in and showed us to the room. He correctly identified that we needed to go to sleep after a long journey, so gave us the essential information; that we would have to pay 2 euros a day to use the safe, we could have coffee making facilities at an additional charge. We let this go it was not his fault and we wanted to have a good holiday so paid the surcharge for the safe, but not for coffee facilities.
Breakfast was ok, but not five star quality. Horrible orange juice and coffee, poor quality bread. I managed to eat the fruit and would buy something else later for breakfast.

When we approached reception they had informed us that our room was big and therefore wanted to take some furniture from our room to use for another room! Once she saw our face she suggested that she would obtain this from another room. Maybe they should have organised this better in the first place or simply obtained from an empty room so they do not ask their guests to come into their rooms to remove furniture once checked in?!

The room was spacious enough, clean and comfortable, but lacked any form of watching a DVD or Sky so rendered the tv a little useless to foreign travellers who do not speak Greek.

We quickly realised that the hotel facilities were not up to the quality you would expect.

15 mins in the jacuzzi would cost 30 euros per person- should not be at an additional cost in a five star hotel.

The gym's air conditioning did not work so rendered the gym unmanageable unless you are used to the heat.

The pool table, table tennis, air hockey did not work, the staff kept making different excuses when asked what was wrong.

The hotel is on the far edge of Platanias, you cannot walk to the main town in the heat, you need a car or bus.

Chania is nice, it had lovely sights and restaurants.
Platanias is also ok and we found good beaches, activities and food. We found that the hotels offered in Platanias offered the quiet location, good facilities and beaches that would have equalled or beat that on offer at Asterion.

The bus ran every 30 mins however, I would definitely rent a car or at least take your driving licence with you so that you can rent one when you get there. We did not bring our driving licence because we had planned to relax in the hotel and enjoy the facilities in a semi remote location. Whilst the hotel was semi remote; it did not compensate with 5 star the facilities expected and we grew tired of watching sky news or sitting on our own in the deserted bar in the evening and got fed up with waiting for buses during the day.

We had opted to eat out a few evenings found at town called malemare was within walking distance- be careful of the Italian restaurant the chicken was undercooked we identified this prior to eating, but could have ruined the holiday further.

For the hight of the season Asterion and the neighbouring town was like a ghost town. We were regularly the only ones in the restaurant or cocktail bar. We wanted quiet ; but it felt more like the place was literally a ghost town - it was a little eerie and felt uncomfortable at times.

The cocktail bar was not equipped to deal with most cocktails it had a brief selection and were expensive ; 7 euros.

The menus had indicated that you could construct you own, but when I had requested basic cocktails, they did not have the facilities to make them so I gave up and drank one on the menu that I did not particularly like.

We opted for the al a carte restaurant for a couple of evenings the food was good but not a la carte. However we felt safe that we could at least eat here without becoming ill.

The service in the restaurant was good , but the place was just empty and therefore lacked atmosphere that music cannot provide.

The beach was pebbly and uncomfortable to swim in. I had hurt myself a couple of times by getting hit by some strong waves and crashing onto the pebbles on the shore. Because of this I would suggest that it is not suitable for children.

We spent some time on the beach in the late evenings and was not asked to pay to use the sunbeds.

The owner regularly uses the hotel facilities for her grand children to play and therefore made children the priority in the pool. We were asked to stop playing a game of catch in the pool although many other guests were playing ball games in the pool at the same time because we were nearest to her child and he may struggle to enjoy the facilities. In my opinion this is appalling seen as though we were paying customers. If the owners wish to treat this like a home they should not open it as a business.

They have stray cats in Crete and had witnessed many guests being cruel to the animals, using catapults to hit them, kicking them , allowing their children to chase them pick them up to chuck them in the water, it was very upsetting. I had to challenge people on occasion however they did not seem to care. I do not like cats particularly, but it was very distressing to witness so I would encourage the owners to make it clear to guests that animal cruelty should not be tolerated in their establishment. It is meant to be five star accommodation yet the behaviour of many guests did not reflect this.

All of the staff were all very friendly and attentive and are certainly an asset to the hotel and had made the stay bearable.

We felt cheated at the facilities and the request at surcharges to very basic amenities.

I felt that the problem with this hotel is the business model. If it was advertised as a remote and quiet 3 star with no entertainment or basic hotel facilities; even quiet ones- you may walk away satisfied.

However you can find 3 star hotel facilities cheaper, with better beaches and without the need to leave the hotel or regularly travel ; closer to Platanias for both families and/or couples.

I would not recommend this hotel on a four or five star basis.

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
7 Thank L B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Stockholm, Sweden
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 August 2013

We have spent 2 days in a deluxe family suite, which had a fantastic sea view. Our room was beautifully decorated with a comfortable bed. And, the terrace was lovely.
Hotel environment was peaceful and tidy. Hotel is nicely located, but it is just a little bit away from the nearest bus stop.
Pool area is nicely decorated and good for kids. Unfortunately, beach is not sandy, and it is required to pay for the beach lounge.
Hotel personnel were helpful and gracious. Hotel food was mostly delicious and served properly.
Hope to visit there soon.

  • Stayed July 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Nazsah
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Portsmouth
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 July 2013

we had a lovely relaxed holiday, mainly due to the very friendly and attentive staff. The owners try very hard in difficult circumstances to make it work. We felt that 5 * was above the European norm. but we were very touched at the effort made by staff and owners to put things right and ensure a good holiday experience.
I think that the owners should review their senior managers as we felt that they were totally incompetent and the service survived through staff diligence rather than any managerial effort.

  • Stayed July 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank andytPortsmouth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Prague, Hlavni Mesto Praha, Czech Republic
Level Contributor
11 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 June 2013

We spent two weeks in Asterion. We had a great holiday. But this was mostly thanks that we rent a car and were able to travel around and see different places at Crete or even to move few kilometers from the hotel and spend day on a nice sandy beach. But we would stay in a different hotel next time. The location is very remote, in fact in the middle of nowhere. They claim it's in Platanias which is very pleasant sea side town, full of tavernas, bars, shops etc. But the develolpment of Platanias has stopped circa three kilometers from Asterion, so without a car it's very difficult to leave the hotel as it is located in between of fields, 500 m from the main road leading to Platanias.

So we normally took a car and move to another beach or went for lunch or dinner to Platanias, Chania or neighbouring villages.

The beach is pebbly and not very nice, not convenient for small kids as after two meters is becomes quite deep. In fact there are many nicer beaches at Crete. Also Platanias has much better sandy beach.
Hotel is very clean and rooms are large. But rooms get very hot as only one card is provided (so AC switches off when you leave the room) and AC itself is not very effective. They also charge for many things we would expect to be included - sun beds on a hotel beach which is in fact used only by hotel guests as it is so remote, safe, fresh squeezed juice during breakfast, in-room coffee maker, water during breakfast... Also as they have in fact a monopoly in the location thus prices (drinks, food, minishop) are higher than in restaurants, bars and shops in Platanias.
Pool is nice, we were happy that there were no animation activities at all and no loud music.
Breakfast was fine, but with afwul coffee and juices.
Staff is very friendly and helpful.
As our summary, we can't complain about the hotel itself but we didn't like too much its location. In case you want to spend very peaceful holiday on one place, then the hotel is perfect. But if you would like to feel bit livelier holiday atmosphere, enjoy more the beach (especially if you have kids) and not the pool only, eat in different restaurants then try something else in Platanias. Platanias is very nice place with really summer holiday atmosphere and Chania is just great.

Room Tip: any room oriented to east, ideally top floor
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  • Stayed June 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank Sarka_Liska
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Leeds
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 June 2013

I have just rerturned from a fortnights holiday at the Asterion Hotel; It was so good. The hotel is lovely, the food is good and the staff are outstanding. They never stop working are are very friendly. The service bus is easily accessible to travel to other resorts. Can't wait to save up and go back again. From 1st June, 2013 2 sun beds and 1 parasol are six Euros as the governmment have imposed a tax. Book now and go, you'll love it!

Angela

Room Tip: We had an economy suite which was perfectly lovely with a good size balcony.
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  • Stayed June 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
2 Thank Angela L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Asterion Hotel Suites and Spa

Property: Asterion Hotel Suites and Spa
Address: Old National Road Kissamou, Platanias, Crete 730 14, Greece
Region: Greece > Crete > Chania Prefecture > Platanias
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#6 Spa Hotel in Platanias
#10 Luxury Hotel in Platanias
#18 On the Beach Hotel in Platanias
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:5 star — Asterion Hotel Suites and Spa 5*
Number of rooms: 67
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Asterion Luxury Beach Hotel & Suites is a five-star Hotel, in perfect harmony with the Cretan environment, located directly on the beach front, offers in total 67 luxury rooms. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Asterion Hotel Platanias
Asterion Hotel Suites And Spa Platanias, Crete

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