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“Lovely Food”
Review of Despo

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Ranked #20 of 36 Hotels in Kato Gouves
Reviewed 1 July 2014

Just returned from a week here . Lots of positive and some not so positive. Food is delicious not loads of choice but fresh and tasty and very Greek - which is great . Pool lovely and clean , plenty of beds , George the bar man is a real character and all the staff are friendly and so helpful.The Rainbow bar just across the road is great too.

Not so positive , our room was very small , the bathroom was not really very nice and could have been cleaned more and towels should have been changed more too , The hotel is full of Russians - not the Hotel's fault of course - but they are very rude and arrogant and very noisy at night and woke us up a few times in the early hrs- though I know this can happen wherever you go .

I would not recommend taking children as its so quiet .

Would I go back ? Yes for the food and the staff , but otherwise no.

Room Tip: Do not take the basement/dungeon rooms they are terrible and if you can get an upgrade to a superior...
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  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank helsbelsNewcastle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 28 June 2014

I have just returned from a wonderful week long break at hotel Despo, I travelled there with my partner, I was very nervous about going there as it has some bad reviews, Well dont believe what you read, The hotel was spotlessley clean throughout, The staff were very friendly George on the bar was so funny and spoke to all of us guests making jokes and entertaining us, Maria on reception was lovely and always helped if there was any problems,
The pool was one of the best ive ever been to, its in direct sunlight all day so its very warm,The seating area around the pool was very clean,
The gardens were very pretty with lots of flowers,
The food was basic but tasted fine, lots of beautiful salads and always feta cheese, Breakfast is continental with breads toast, cheese ham jams ,salad, usually hot scrambled eggs as well,
The all inclusive drinks only included local brandy ouzo racki beers and wines, also after 1030 you have to pay for your drinks, Lots of soft drinks availiable, ice cream to die for between 3pm and 6pm.
The rooms are basic but clean towels and linen changed twice a week,There are some dungeon rooms in basement which we were told about they were not nice,Our room 305 was lovely it was on the first floor ,
We hired a safe which was 3 euros a day and the aircon was 7 euros a day when the tempreture reached 37c you need it,
The only problem i would say is the sunbeds get filled quick so u need to be up early.
You have a busy road to cross outside the hotel to reach the beach which is a 15 min walk away, The beach is lovely and
the sea idylic .
I f you fancy a nice relaxing meal away from hotel Rainbow bar directly across the road is highly recommended
We would have no problem returning to this hotel we had a lovely week relaxing around the pool,
If you expect British food dont come here, rember this is Greece and its Greek food,

Room Tip: On the upper floors
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  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
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7  Thank dianewhitehead
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 June 2014

I went to Hotel Despo with a friend for a girly holiday last October. We had just missed lunch when we arrived off the plane and without even having to ask the staff went to get us some food out. Our room was small and basic (you get what you pay for), but we didn't need anything fancy. It was cleaned regularly and had all that we needed for our week away.

The inclusive food was mixed - some days it was delicious, others we were less sure, but there were gorgeous cheap little bistros round the corner for those days(!) The area was fairly nondescript to be honest, with some nice beaches a little walk away and close to many areas to visit and explore by car. For October the weather was lovely and we were on the beach every day. For what we paid there are absolutely no complaints there!!!

The only thing I can say to be aware of is the noise - there is really NO sound proofing in the hotel so if you stay up past 12am you'll be woken when the first child emerges at 6am and squeals down the hall (which we found difficult), and if you want an early night and early start you'll be woken when people are leaving the bar late (which I know others have complained about on TripAdvisor).

As for the staff - they ABSOUTELY made our holiday. Whoever complained about George is clearly ridiculous. Treat him properly and he'll treat you properly. It's the Greek way. He looked after us for our entire holiday - knowing what we would order when he saw us approaching (including the daily ice cream), recommending DELICIOUS alternatives when we fancied a change (such as lager with pomegranate juice...who'd have thought?!) , telling us numerous stories and making sure that we were happy at all times. The staff knew every language (that we saw anyway) which for such a little place was really impressive, and we even got most of them (and several fellow-holiday makers) playing a mass game of Uno one night. Fab.

...so if you want a super cheap holiday with lots of smiles then this is your place...if you're picky and demand high quality and tranquility, then I'd recommend it less.

  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled with friends
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6  Thank Rozana W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 June 2014

Spent 11 days all inclusive at the Despo. Upon arriving we were shown to our rooms by the receptionist, which was on the lower ground (basement). Before opening the door we were informed that we could change the room the next day if we wanted, which set the alarm bells ringing.
On opening the door we were a bit shocked at first, at how compact, dark and basic the room was. Two single beds, table, wardrobe, and small bath room with a tiny shower. It does have a small refrigerator and a safe(€2 a day), but no air con. Obviously as we were in the basement there is no balcony but a patio area, which people passing can look down into your room so not much privacy. They are only two electric sockets one of which is used for the fridge, hot water is hit and miss no matter what time of day you get a shower, and the water always spills out onto the bathroom floor. With all this in mind we decided to keep the room, after all it was only for somewhere to sleep and dump the case, and listening to other who had moved the other rooms weren't much better, plus the basement rooms were a lot cooler so we didn't need or have to pay for the air con like the other had to.
The hotel is small but well kept and clean. The pool area is small, spaces and sunbeds are limited, so you'll be really lucky to get a space or bed after 9.30am. The staff are fantastic really friendly and helpful especially George the bar man, and Maria the receptionist. Yes there may be one grumpy one, but considering they all have to work 7 days a week, sometimes 16hrs a day they do a great job. If you want any information about the resort, local buses or hotel services they are more than happy to help.
The Hotel is located on the main road about 15mins walk to the beaches, which are all small, there is a larger beach but its quite a walk to get there, two sunbeds and a parasol cost €6 a day. The resort is small but spread over a large area, with the odd bar and restaurant dotted here and there, likewise for the shops, so be prepared to do some walking. Be aware as stated the hotel is by the side of the main road, with no proper crossing, wait for a decent gap in the traffic and "leg it".
The food was good no complaints, breakfast is a continental style (no full English), cold meats, cereals, bread for toast, cakes, and scramble eggs. Lunch and evening meals consists of, help yourself to as much salad as you want, a hot meals buffet which the chef serves you. Usually 3 meats, pork, chicken or fish, chips (fritters), paster and veg, dessert which is always sliced melon and a cake.
The all inclusive bar opens 11am till 10.30pm serving tea, coffee, soft drinks, local beer, ouzo, raki, brandy and wine. From 3pm ice cream cornets and snacks are served. Brand name and other drinks you pay for, shorts €3.50-€5.50, bottle beer €3, and cocktails €5.
Overall if your looking for a friendly, quiet, basic little hotel this is for you, if you want luxury and loads of entertainment and night life you'll be disappointed. Look forward to returning sometime soon.

Room Tip: No lifts, no air con in basement rooms.
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  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank Craig C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 June 2014

A budget holiday so you get what you pay for!

The staff we found (apart from George the evening bar man) were absolutely lovely to us and very helpful. Also be aware that there are no diet drinks as part of the AI package which as diabetics we found very annoying. Therefore be prepared to buy you own and bottled water although this at least is sold at the hotel.

Rooms were basic and tired but clean with the minimum of housekeeping undertaken. Food we enjoyed and Michael the chef really tried his best to supply different dishes every day for lunch and dinner although breakfast was very basic.

Location and some of the 'plebs' who stayed really put us off returning but overall for a cheap break we can not grumble.

Room Tip: Superior room a must!
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  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Millytain
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 June 2014

Just back and we had a great time. For the money we paid for the holiday we could not have asked for anything more. The staff were friendly and helpful, the rooms were very clean, they had a fridge, air conditioning and safe (in a little need of a refurbishment, but comfortable and not inhabitable, I did not see one cockroach or unusual creepy craw lies), the food was lovely (and I can be a little picky), as part of the all inclusive you can get beer, wine, brandy, raki and ouzo at the bar, and they have pretty much anything else if you pay. Some reviews mentioned weddings, there was a wedding there the day We were leaving and there was a notice up asking guests if they wished to join in on the celebrations, I am little sad I missed it.

From the road (which can be a little nerve racking crossing) you can get the local bus if you wish to explore a little more of the island. From the beach, you can catch buses for boat trips. We went to Spinalonga, Knossos, Saint Nicholas, the aquarium and Heraklion - recommend them all. If you come out the hotel and walk straight, you will find the Rainbow bar at the top (which I recommend), and if you walk down you will find a street of bars, restaurants, shops and the beach and promenade and at the bottom. If you come out the hotel and turn right walk along for 10minutes and then walk down you will find a busier (and better street) for shopping. We went out for diner a few nights and we can recommend Mylos, Rainbow and the Island. And also the Bakery for a little treat.

Lastly if you were looking to save yourself the hassle of transfers, a taxi from the airport to the hotel will cost about 30 euro.

I would definitely go back, we had great holiday and were sad to leave, and again for the price we paid it had everything we could possibly want.

Room Tip: I did not see the "basement rooms", we were in 321 and it was fine. There are newer rooms...
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  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank Natalie B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 June 2014

We visited Despo hotel for a 4 day break.
Myself and my 2 children age 11&13, a friend and her 2 children 14&15.

The hotel is only a short 15-20 mins drive from the airport,I was a little worried when driving through the town as it looked a bit rundown.
We had a late arrival, getting to the hotel approx 11.15pm.
We were given our room key and told the bar was open should we require a drink.
As the all inclusive finished at 10.30pm we had to pay for our drinks.
We dumped the cases in the room and went to the bar.

A lovely man called George was our bar tender, got chatting to us, asking where we were from etc.
I had took a picture of the greek sayings , hello, goodbye, thank you please etc and he was helping up pronounce them correctly.
We paid approx 12 euros for 4 soft drinks and 2 large beers.
Pool table near the bar area kept the kids entertained for a while.
We saw one cat during our stay. no cockroaches, but we were all bitten by mosquitoes and i saw quite a few bad bites on some people, so make sure you take sprays, bands and plug ins.

Our room wasn't the biggest, a double bed with bunk beds, dresser,tv, fridge,chair,,quite a lot of wardrobe space and drawers compared to where i have stayed before. 2 doors to open the balcony,one with slats and saloon doors .It was VERY warm in the room , so every night we closed the outside doors and left the inside doors open to try and let in a bit of air but it didn't really work. I wasn't going to pay for aircon as we were only there as short time. I wouldn't like to go in the summer with no aircon, it will be a must.
Room cleaned every day, towels changed a couple of times a week. The shower is probably the worse thing in there as the water goes everywhere and the floor gets soaked, not the best shower n the world but we managed. If you had a shower quite late there wouldn't be much hot water left either.
I asked for another 2 pillows and the next day they were in our room :-)

Considering it was half term there wasn't many kids there, always found a sunbed , even tho it was for 6 of us together. never went down before 9am either. There are 2 pools, a kids shallower pool and a deeper pool. with sunbeds all around. There also was a grassed area where there were beds so you could get away from the pool or shade under the trees.
Was a bit chilly when you got in it, but you soon acclimatised. not like some I've been in and you can't stand it and have to get out because its too icy cold.
Lilos and inflatables allowed in the pool.
No outside toilet so you have to go into the reception and down some stairs inside the hotel

Well what can i say, Breakfast was cereal ,fruit or toast (fine by us all)
Dinner and Evening meal, was always 3 main choices, with either chips or potatoes, i even tried some greek food because there wasn't much choice, wether i would have it again is another thing.
Yes I know I'm in another country and should try food, but I'm not one for change, ha, still tried stuff as couldn't find anything else
Desserts were usually fruit or one of their cakes.
One day my son ( who is a fussy eater) said he didn't like anything, so i asked the chef if he would make him some chips and he quite willingly obliged.
The chef and the waiters in the eating area are fantastic, remembering your football teams, drinks etc.
Yes you do have to sit at the same table during your visit but it makes it easier than trying to find a table.
On the day before we planned to go to the beach the following day, we ordered a lunch box to take with us. water, range, meat, cheese, bread, olives. Not bad actually, apparently you can order a breakfast box too.
From 3-6pm they had ice creams at the bar, which the kids absolutely loved, and so did we if I'm honest.
We had a late flight on our final day, check out was 12pm however we could still eat and drink within the hotel until we left , which i thought was fabulous, saying that as we didn't arrive until 11.15pm on our first night we should have been allowed to as we had missed the whole days food but i know a lot of places don't allow it

There was FREE wifi in the reception and pool areas, which was absolutely fantastic and id say this is a huge plus to the hotel, as i could still keep in touch with people back home and check emails etc.

As well as the pool table (2 euros for 2 games) there was a free table tennis table ( we always take our own bats and balls anyway)
In the reception there is a table full of books and magazines that people leave who have finished with them.

You could buy bottles water from reception, 6 large bottles for 2 euros which i thought was a good price.

One day we went for a walk to find some souvenir shops, turn left out the hotel and walk for about 15 mins until you see a kiosk on the other side of the road.
If you turn down there you will find a lot of shops and bars.
Its also the way to the beach.
We had a lovely meal in the town and was reasonably priced. We walked back along the sea front, (passing 2 beaches with parasols and sun beds) and if you follow the road road it brings you out right facing the despo hotel, with the rainbow bar on your left.
If i had known this I would have gone this way in the first place.
There is a bakery down this road. ITS A MUST VISIT. open 8.30-3pm you can buy the biggest donuts I've ever seen, 1.40 euro and it was bigger than my head !!!!
The souvenirs were pretty cheap as well, so grabbed a few bargains here.
We got 6 beds and 3 umbrellas for 15 euros.
The water has some good waves and the kids loved them

The drinks at the hotel were coke, sprite, fanta orange, fanta lemon, beer, ouzo and some spirits, THERE IS NO VODKA unless you pay for it. Not much choice if you are a spirit drinker unless you pay for it.

None what so ever, MAKE YOUR OWN :-)
Pool table, Table tennis table, small park for children

There is a pub over the road ( rainbow bar) which holds stuff on at night and football etc, however we never went in it.

We were fortunate to have a room on the first floor, you will notice the dungeons(as they are called) when you go to the toilets which are situated downstairs, they need more lighting down there hence the name the dungeons.
On our departure, we asked for a courtesy room and was given one of these rooms.
The room was slightly bigger than our rooms had been, and with them being underground quite cool, which i could have done with on the warmer night. No Balcony tho just a small window
Wouldn't have bothered me staying in one of these rooms at all.

Overall a lovely little hotel, but food could be improved with more choice
Would I return? To be honest I'm not sure, we really enjoyed the hotel, grounds, staff etc, however the food was a put off. I always go all inclusive now as with the amount of drinks the kids have its worth it, but i don't know if we could have coped if we stayed longer than we did. There are places to eat out, but you don't want to do that when you have paid for all your food.

Hope this helps, any questions please ask

  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled with family
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11  Thank ManchesterChristine
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Despo

Address: Kato Gouves, Gouves, Crete 70014, Greece
Region: Greece > Crete > Heraklion Prefecture > Gouves > Kato Gouves
Bar / Lounge Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#14 Family Hotel in Kato Gouves
Price Range: £30 - £72 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Despo 3*
Number of rooms: 73
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Also Known As:
Despo Hotel Gouves
Despo Hotel Crete
Hotel Despo
Despo Crete/Kato Gouves

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