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“Excellent Hotel - Exceptional Views - Exceptional Service”
Review of Agali Houses

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Agali Houses
Ranked #3 of 15 Firostefani B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 30 September 2012

Two of us stayed for one night in the middle of September as part of a two night stay on Santorini. We would have stayed two nights but we originally only booked for one night and there was no vacancy. This was a bit of a splurge for us during a month long trip through Greece, Turkey and Italy. Booking handled very professionally by e-mail and check in was painless. Suite was clean, quiet and safe. We opted for the 18 euro (two people and luggage) pick up from the Blue Star Ferry, at the port (good decision given the congestion, luggage, etc.) The porter from Agali Houses met us off the shuttle and handled all the luggage - this guy is fit. There are a significant number of stairs. Great suite with private sunbed deck and private separate entertaining deck. The lack of smoking restrictions in Europe prompted us to order in from a local restaurant - delivery person had to check in at the service desk and was escorted to our suite. We had the best views on the island why would we go any where when we could enjoy a private smoke free dining experience? Dinner was delivered hot, promptly and at a very reasonable price. Agali Houses contacted a associate hotel and arranged for our transfer (no cost) for our second and last night on Santorini - their recommendation was a good one. We had breakfast in the dining room at Agali Houses as the open air service did not commence until 09:00. It would have been nice to have dined outside given we had an early start to our day of touring the island. The only thing that betrayed the quality of the hotel and the service was being presented with powdered orange drink at breakfast.

Room Tip: There are suites locates at various levels. The higher up you are on the cliff face the fewer the st...
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  • Stayed: September 2012, travelled as a couple
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Thank MacBritishColumbia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 16 September 2012

We were greeted with open arms by the hotel staff. Their service was superb -from the moment we arrived to the end of our stay. The front desk helped us organize our itinerary and suggested places to go and eat on the island, right down to making reservations for us for a sunset dinner. We stayed at the superior apartment and we couldn't have asked for a better view of the caldera. The private balcony was amazing. It has good privacy and really comfy beds for u to enjoy the view. The breakfast area is cute and provides a good view as well. It really makes a vacation when you can enjoy a nice glass of orange juice overlooking a volcano! We loved the agali houses and can't wait to be back!

  • Stayed: September 2012
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Thank Anticaries
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 September 2012

This hotel has amazing views of the caldera and the volcano. The property looks very pretty on the cliff with the swimming pool in the middle section. Some rooms are further up the cliff which is nearer to the reception and hotel front door (less steps to hike up). If you don't want to walk up and down, best to email the hotel in advance to request a room nearer to the reception area. Although the rooms further down the cliff seems to offer more privacy.

I had booked the room directly from the hotel website and emailed them in advance to request twin beds in our traditional studio sea view. The hotel emailed back to confirm my request. Upon arrival, they told me they didn't have any twin beds available as those rooms are already taken by other guests. They only offered to show us another room when we started to complain, but the other room was even smaller than the original room. I explained that my request was confirmed by the hotel via email and now they are providing me with a room that wasn't what I originally paid for. After a long debate, they offered to deduct EUR 30 per night from the rate which we booked the room. But the price discount was only offered after I refuse to accept the double bed in our room and wasted my precious holiday time making a big fuss. This is not a good start to our holiday in Santorini.

The hotel provides pick-up and drop-off services and they charged EUR 8 per person one way to/from the ferry pier. The buses will also pick up and drop off other guests from hotels near-by. Remember to email the hotel in advance with your arrival details if this is required. The drive to from the ferry pier to the hotel takes approx 15-20mins on the bus.

They only provide one key for the room, so I assume the hotel expects the majority of their guests to be couples who can't spend a minute apart from each other. My friend and I on the other hand found it rather inconvenient.

The rooms have a rustic atmosphere, so look carefully at the photos to see if this is the type of place you like to stay before booking. Some of the other hotels in Firostefani have rooms which are mostly white and more modern in style. The bed in the traditional apartments are located on an upper level, so the room is quite spacious. Be careful when walking up to the bed as the ceiling is quite low and curved, so you may hit your head. The bathroom is very dark and there are no shower curtains. So after showering, you will flood the entire bathroom, which will become unpleasant for the next person to use it. More hooks/towel rails in the bathroom would have been appreciated. There is a switch for the water heater which you have to switch on approx 10mins prior to showering. But after the first person finishes, make sure to wait 10-15mins before the next person uses the shower to ensure there is enough hot water. The hotel offers Apivita soap, shampoo, conditioner, body wash and body lotion. Not sure if they offer other toiletries (toothbrush, razors, etc) upon request, so best to bring your own. The water pressure is slightly weak but still acceptable. They also have a decent hair dryer, good enough for drying long and thick hair, so no need to bring your own. There is also a mini safe in the room by the front door.

There are two sun loungers and a small table and two chairs in the little private balcony right outside our room. As our room was at the bottom of the property, no one would walk down the final flight of stairs to our room (unless they wandered down by mistake) so it was quite private. The balconies for the other rooms further up the property were more exposed as you can easily look into them while walking up the stairs. There were a couple of cats that came past our balcony during the night time so if you like cats, remember to save some ham from breakfast to feed them. During the day time, you will most probably find the cats in the shade and napping.

The wifi signal is quite weak and only works outdoors. The staff explained that the signal is broadcasted up on the cliff, above the hotel, so the reception gets better the further up the property you go. But even at the breakfast area (next to the reception), you can only go online, but not Skype as the other person won't hear you very well. There is no wifi signal indoors, but we found that at certain angles up by the bed in the upper level of the room, you can also manage to go online. Uploading multiple photos on Facebook will take a while...

The swimming pool is adequate in size, although there will often be a number of people on the sun loungers by the pool during the day time. The pool closes at 7pm so no swimming is allowed at night, even though the sun only sets around 8:30pm in mid-June 2012. If you're physically in the pool, you don't have a view of the caldera.

Breakfast is served on the terrace next to the reception. It can get quite hot under the sun so you might prefer sitting indoors. The breakfast tray is brought to you after you sit down and consists of slices of white and brown bread, a slice of cake, soft boiled egg, yoghurt, fruit a few slices of cold cuts and cheese. There is also a glass of orange juice and a pot of hot water for you to make coffee/tea. You can get cereal and milk from the breakfast room indoors. Not a lot of variety (same everyday), but enough for breakfast. They serve breakfast up to 11am so you don't have to wake up too early.

If you ask the reception for restaurant recommendations, one of the suggestions will be Mama Thira just 3mins walk above the hotel. The restaurant serves fresh food at reasonable prices, it was one of the best meals we had in Greece. When we were flicking through the menu, the restaurant staff came over and told us they had a special set for two persons at EUR 15 which includes appetiser (salad plus hot appetiser), main course (grilled fish) and dessert (cake). This is a very good deal as ordering any of the grilled fishes off their a la carte menu already costs EUR 15 and up. If you go for dinner, remember to ask for their specials sets before ordering.

It takes approx 10mins to walk to Fira down the main road above the hotel. Remember to bring a small torch or download a torch app on your phone as some sections of the road can be quite dark at night. There are lots of shops and restaurants in Fira.

If you ask the reception for places to go or sites to see, they will recommend you join a day tour. They offer several different itineraries but the tour we joined included walking up the volcano, a swim in the hot springs and watching the sunset in Oia. When we boarded the bus in the morning to head to the ferry pier (to take a boat to the volcano), we saw lots of other passengers that arrived to Santorini on the same ferry as us from Mykonos. They were staying at other hotels in Santorini. After chatting with the other passengers, we realised that everyone paid a different price for the same tour. We were quoted a slightly higher price than the other passengers (I cannot remember the exact prices, but a couple of Euros). So if you are travelling in a large group (a few Euros per person can add up!) or price conscious, go shop around in Fira as there are many travel agents offering the exact same itineraries. The hotel will tell you that the tour company they use will pick up and drop off at the main road right outside the hotel, but I'm sure you can ask the travel agents in Fira if they offer this service as well.

You will probably need to rent a quad bike or car (suggest to rent a Smart car as it's easy to drive on the small roads to the beaches). Do shop around as the prices quoted are vastly different from one bike/car rental shop to the next. We rented our Smart car from Tony's car rental which is 5mins down the main road (towards Fira direction), right below Thira Hotel. The car rental shops in Fira might be even cheaper, but Tony's was closer to the hotel, so it was more convenient to walk back after dropping off the car at the end of the day.

Definitely go to Oia to watch the sunset from the castle ruins or the windmill, but remember to go early to snag a good spot. Sun was setting at approx 8:30pm in mid-June 2012 and we arrived at approx 7pm to get front row seats to the most amazing sunset ever. You can bring drinks/food in the shops before walking out to the castle/windmill. Remember to charge up the battery for your camera!

Bottom line - every property along the cliff in Firostefani have the same stunning view, so I would suggest you look carefully at the other properties nearby and compare the prices and reviews on Trip Advisor before booking this hotel. It's a nice hotel, but I'm not sure it was worth the price we paid.

  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled with friends
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11  Thank Adrina
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 August 2012

We stayed at this hotel as a family of 4 (2 adults & 2 teenagers) being our first stop of a multi-centre holiday, which also included Naxos & Mykonos. Agali Houses could not have given us a warmer welcome, nor a more perfect start to our time in Greece. The rooms (2x traditional rooms with sea views) were spacious, elegantly decorated & spotlessly clean with a kitchenette, generous patio & a view that was simply stunning. Whilst Oia is where the crowds go to see the sunset, you won't get any less of a view from your very own balcony. The atmosphere at the hotel is relaxed & the staff whilst extremely helpful are deliberately unobtrusive. Not much is offered by the hotel in terms of snacks or meals etc outside of breakfast, however Firostefani does have several restaurants nearby and the hustle and bustle of Fira is only a short 10 minute walk away where there are plenty more. Most reviews will mention the steps and it is true that these can be hard going especially in the heat but you can't avoid them in Santorini & it is just too much of a beautiful place to miss because of them.

  • Stayed: July 2012, travelled with family
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1  Thank Kingofclifton
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 August 2012

This was my third stay on Santorini, but my first at Agali Houses. I have to say that out of all of my Santorini accomodations, this one was by far the best! You can not beat the views from this wonderful hotel. Rooms were spacious (we rented the apartment unit) and had a lovely patio for sun bathing and relaxing. The overall atmosphere of the hotel is laid back and quiet, so if you are looking for a party, then I would say go elswhere. But if you are wanting some lovely relaxation in a postcard like setting, you will not be disappointed with Agali Houses. Remember, you can always enjoy the nightlife in town!

The rooms were very clean and modern. The pool area is great and we didn't have any problem getting a sun bed at any time, even though the hotel was full. There are not extensive services as there is no restaurant or pool bar, but with a kitchenette and little refridgerator, we stocked up at one of the mini-markets up at the top of the hill.

The only negative is the steps up and down to the hotel. It was a bit of a hike whenever you wanted to venture forth into the town or to go get anything away from the hotel. But that is Santorini... lots of steps everywhere! But don't worry about carrying your luggage up and down the stairs! There was a wonderfully strong bellman that carried everything for us when we arrived and departed!

The location at the edge of the cliffs with no other building in front gave you a front row view of the caldera and the beautiful Mediterranean Sea!

I highly recommend Agali Houses and only wish that we could have spent more time there!

Room Tip: The Apartment rooms was wonderful!
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  • Stayed: July 2012, travelled with friends
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2  Thank mocash
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 July 2012

We have been to Agali Houses in 2010 already and were very excited to return this June.

We have picked a traditional studio and were amazed by our room. It was a quiet two-level apartment at the lowest level of the hotel. There were Mediterranean tiles combined with nice and warm wooden furniture throughout the studio. We loved the elegant and understatement style that doesn't only describe the accomodation perfectly but also the staff. Every single staff member has a smile on their face and simply creates a warm- hearted and relaxed atmosphere.

This year they even assisted us in a special way because they helped me organizing the proposal to my girlfriend. Every staff member was involved and successfully kept the secret until the "big day".

If you are looking for a quiet and absolutely relaxing hotel in a stunning environment, don't miss out on "Agali Houses". You will love it!!

  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled as a couple
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Thank Lammi79
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 July 2012

Our family stayed for five nights in June 2012 in two studio apartments. This accommodation takes full advantage of the wonderful views, but as others have said, there are quite a few steps to get to it. But it’s worth it. Rooms were clean and a good size, bed comfortable, and we loved our balcony where we could sit and watch the boat activity below and that beautiful sunset each night. Breakfast was great (more than enough for us) and we loved the pool area. We also appreciated the wifi access. Service by the staff was very good, particularly the front reception staff who helped with queries, maps and directions, and the porter who somehow managed to carry all those suitcases up and down the hill!

At the top of the hill there was a supermarket , some shops, several restaurants, and the local bus stop. We did the cliff top walk to Oia one day, which took us about three hours, then caught the local bus back. Well worth the effort as we saw lots of interesting things, not to mention the views, but if you are planning on doing this I’d suggest go early to avoid the heat. We also walked into Fira a few times – we preferred the cliff top path to the road, which took about 10-15 minutes. We really liked Firostefani as it wasn’t as busy and touristy as Fira.

We hope to go back to Santorini one day and would definitely stay at Agali Houses again.

  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
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Thank LoveToTravel032
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Agali Houses

Address: Firostefani 84 700, Greece
Phone Number:
Region: Greece > South Aegean > Cyclades > Santorini > Firostefani
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 15 B&Bs / Inns in Firostefani
Price Range: £132 - £469 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Agali Houses 4*
Number of rooms: 30
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Agali Houses Hotel Firostefani
Agali Hotel Firostefani
Agali Houses Santorini/Firostefani

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