Domes of Elounda, Autograph Collection
What We Love
- Panoramic views of the Gulf of Korthos and the Venetian ruins on Spinalonga Island
- Cuisine by top Greek chefs
- The spa's relaxation room, lit by candles
- Sea views from all the Dome Suites
- Contemporary design brings in sunlight and incorporates sweeping views
- Walking distance to the charming fishing village of Plaka, where you can eat in a traditional taverna
What To Know
- The resort is popular with European families, so there will most likely be children around
- Consider renting a car if you’d like to explore Crete, as the resort is somewhat isolated
- The beach is a narrow stretch of gray sand accessed through a tunnel running under a road
- Since the villas and Dome Suites are built vertically up a cliff (read: on top of each other), some offer more privacy than others
- Free WiFi
- Kids Club
- Parking On Site
With a stay at Domes of Elounda, Autograph Collection in Agios Nikolaos (Elounda), you’ll be convenient to Spinalonga Castle. This 5-star hotel is within the vicinity of Agios Nikolaos Archaeological Museum and Lake Voulismeni.
Make yourself at home in one of the 118 air-conditioned rooms featuring refrigerators and minibars. Rooms have private balconies or patios. Wired and wireless Internet access is complimentary, and LCD televisions with satellite programming provide entertainment. Private bathrooms have jetted bathtubs and designer toiletries.
Relax at the full-service spa, where you can enjoy massages, body treatments, and facials. After dipping into one of the 4 outdoor swimming pools, you can spend some time at the private beach. Additional amenities at this Art Deco hotel include complimentary wireless Internet access, concierge services, and babysitting/childcare (surcharge). Getting to nearby attractions is a breeze with the area shuttle (surcharge).
Grab a bite to eat at one of the hotel’s 4 restaurants and 4 coffee shops/cafés, or stay in and take advantage of 24-hour room service. Mingle with other guests at a complimentary reception, held daily. Thirsty? Quench your thirst at one of the 4 bars/lounges or 2 poolside bars. A complimentary buffet breakfast is served daily.
Featured amenities include a business center, limo/town car service, and express check-in. A roundtrip airport shuttle is provided for a surcharge (available 24 hours), and free valet parking is available onsite.
How to Get There
I simply loved the Domes of Elounda! I was after a short break to relax and this was the perfect place for it.
I booked a one bedroom suite with a sea view and a balcony with a whirlpool! The room itself was very spacious. The bathroom with a large jetted tub had doors connecting it to the bedroom on one side, and to the living room on the other, in the event that the sofa bed is being used. The view from the balcony, particularly at sunrise on a clear day is spectacular!
As others have mentioned, the resort is built on a steep hill although buggies are readily available to take you to and from your room.
From the main reception and pool area you can walk via a short underpass to the beach across the road, which is where Topos, the seafood restaurant is located. Perfect dining by the beach. There are three other restaurants - Tholos, where breakfast is served, Yaosai, the Japanese restaurant by the main pool and Blend, the Italian restaurant located on the opposite side of the resort where the residences are.
Overall, service at the hotel was excellent. The dining options were good both in product and service. Breakfast was varied although when it got busy, things did slow down a bit. The property attracts a lot of young families, particularly around U.K. school holidays.
You need a car to get to the hotel from Heraklion Airport which is approximately over an hour’s drive away. The boats to Spinalonga island depart regularly from Plaka Marina - definitely worth a visit. Elounda and Aghios Nikolaos are also worth visiting once there.
I can’t wait to return!
As far as 5 star luxury family friendly resorts go, Domes of Elounda is definitely up there without a doubt. Since having twins our holidays have definitely been different (as all parents know!) but it’s incredibly important for us as a family to enjoy a break in the sunshine and for Mum and Dad to return feeling rested and as refreshed as one can with 2 6 year olds! With this in mind we do invest in our holidays – and Domes of Elounda is not a cheap option so we were expecting 5 star.
Crete is a truly beautiful island and the hotel really is perfectly positioned with the most amazing views of Spinalonga Island. Like many of the reviews have mentioned, it is very hilly around the resort but regular club cars zip around so no worries about packing your hiking boots! The walk back from the beach is quite steep however so do check with the hotel before you book if any assistance can be provided for those with mobility challenges.
Split into 2 main areas: the private and luxury residences/villas, main pool, Blend Restaurant and Haute Living lounge and then the other location included the suites, main reception, 3 restaurants and beach. You did need to take a club car between the 2 locations (unless you were feeling fit and energetic!)
Wow – what an amazing team here. Everyone was incredibly professional, friendly and hard working and made it their mission to ensure guests were comfortable and enjoying their holiday. Each and every person that worked here is a real credit to the resort and I cannot praise highly enough. Thank you to the wonderful Hotel Manager Mr Seizis who was always seen around the resort, chatting to guests and I can’t recall everyone’s names unfortunately, but a few individuals who really went above and beyond include the wonderful F&B Manager Kostas, Alex, Thomas, Ross, Lia, Elena & Kiki in Blend, Georgia, Nicholas, John & Eleni in Haute, AJ & Thanasis at the beach, Dimitris and Lefteris in Yaosai and the lovely Nicoletta and her housekeeping team.
We stayed in a 2 bed Private Residence with our own pool – refurbished this year and benefitting from the Haute Living concept. The villa was beautifully situated with fantastic views. They were clean and nicely decorated. Housekeeping staff were amazing. From a design perspective however we felt that the huge balcony on the first floor was a wasted space particularly when some of the villa interior was a little cramped (e.g. downstairs bathroom where door could not open fully). I do know that as the refurbishment is recent, the accommodation is still being fine-tuned and plans to install Jacuzzis on the balconies are being considered. Would definitely be a great addition!
Haute Living Concept:
A real positive for the resort and a new concept for this year – we really enjoyed the Haute experience and the Guest Relations team were fantastic. Being able to ring for a club car direct to our villa was great – especially when we had the unseasonable rain one eve before heading out for dinner!
The lounge itself was spacious and was great to have food and drink available; 24 hours if required. When speaking to the team, the HL concept is still evolving and there was some confusion with guests over availability of spirits in the HL package which did need to be made clear. Essentially food and wine was available at all times and spirits were available to be enjoyed as a pre-dinner aperitif but for after dinner, spirits and cocktails available at the main bar. Small observation, but some guests did appear disgruntled as they thought that their spirit consumption was being policed!
Hotel has a main family pool, adults only pool and very small “baby pool” (too small for the size of resort in my opinion). We did notice that all the pools with the exception of the tiny baby pool, had a standard depth through of 125m. For our children that can swim but not strong swimmers this wasn’t great as we had to put armbands on them at all times (which they hated!) as they couldn’t touch the bottom anywhere. Of course we were in the pool with them, however a gradient on depth would have been much more “family friendly”, especially in the kids pool. After speaking with the hotel, the fantastic news is that a new Kids Pool is being built during the winter in front of the Kids Club.
Unfortunately we did have some issues with our private pool discolouring the lining of our swimwear which the hotel took immediate action to try to resolve. A specialist was called in as this had never happened before; it was not harmful or a hygiene issue and I think was down to imbalance of the pool treatments used oxidising. Unfortunately the laundry did not rectify the discolouration. Not something I thought we would experience at a 5 star luxury resort but credit to the team, including the Hotel Manager, who responded best they could to try and resolve the situation and who themselves were upset that this had occurred.
The views from the beach were incredible. Such beautiful scenery and crystal clear waters and the team at the beach were always very welcoming. As guests with the Haute Living package, you are able to benefit from a private part of the beach with a sun lounger reservation system booked through the Concierge. This was brilliant and took the pressure off having to start your morning with a race down to the beach with the children!
I did feel as a hotel that prides itself on “family friendly” that the beach was geared more around adults. Unfortunately the excellent kids menu was not available beach side – we were informed we had to eat at the restaurant Topos if the children required this menu (Health & Safety regs apparently when we raised this). For us (and a few other families we spoke to) the fact that only adult meals were available beach side really was an inconvenience and disrupted what would have been a leisurely morning and lunch down at the beach before returning back to the villa/kids club for the afternoon. I do understand from the team that they are looking at revising the menu for next year so that there are some options on the beachside menu that children can enjoy if you prefer to have a quick snack from your sunlounger or the beach bar and not a formal sit down lunch.
The hotel did also tell me that there are plans for a children’s area by the beach with buckets and spades. Once our kids had paddled in the sea a few times they were itching for the next activity so this would be a welcome addition and be a nice “meeting place” for kids to make friends and play together.
The hotel has a main buffet restaurant, Tholos, in addition to 3 a la carte, available with the dine around half board option. Blend (Italian) and Topos (traditional Greek menu beachside) were fantastic. Great ambience, welcoming staff and incredibly delicious food. Yaosai (Japanese/Peruvian) was an interesting mix of dishes, but very tasty and great service again
The Kids Menu that ran throughout the resort restaurants was fantastic – great choices.
On our first night we dined at Tholos buffet restaurant and as first impressions go I would rate our experience as 3 star. In fairness we only went there on our first night – and decided never again! We arrived to chaos and an incredibly noisy atmosphere (I appreciate it was school holidays and a lot of children but we couldn’t even have a conversation). Uncleared tables, cramped super busy buffet area, and a long wait to order drinks and be informed how the buffet system worked. We booked the a la carte restaurants for the remainder of our stay. Thankfully as part of the HL concept, we could have breakfast at Blend which was amazing and a real delight. We did give our feedback and understand that it was Italian theme night which is always popular, but perhaps the hotel should consider limiting the number of guests as peak times. I know from speaking to other guests and some of the staff that Tholos has great feedback in general so if we did return to the hotel I would definitely give the buffet another try!
The hotel does have future development plans for a new concept next to the villas for several small street food shops which I think is a brilliant idea and will certainly enhance the dining options available to guests.
Operated by Worldwide Kids Company (UK based operating to OFSTED standards) was fantastic. Kids loved going for a few hours after lunch; staff and selection of activities was varied and they made some lovely friends.
A beautiful resort with an incredible team of people who go out of their way to ensure their guests have a great holiday and consistently excelled in customer service throughout our stay – true Greek hospitality. Certainly in the school holidays, Domes of Elounda is in the high end price bracket of 5 star “family friendly” hotels so I was surprised and disappointed to experience some of the areas where there’s definitely room for improvement on this basis. Despite this, the overarching thing for me and what was evident during our stay is that the hotel does really value and act on guest feedback and has great plans for further developments.
First class service from the moment we checked in until our unfortunate day of departure. As a Marriott Platinum Premier member, we received an upgrade and free buffet breakfast each day. The property manager also extended one free night dining at the main restaurant. Throughout our stay, we were treated like royalty by all staff members there.
The town of Plaka is only a short walk away. Here you will find fine dining as well as a few shops in the historic quaint fishing village.
Day trips - So much to see on the island. I suggest you take the time to explore ruins, take a beach hopping boat trip, explore Spinalonga island, even a day trip to Santorini is possible. Excursions can be arranged by the resort through their knowledgeable staff.
Looking forward to returning again this year. I highly recommend The Domes of Elounda.
We recently had ten days the Domes of Elounda in a two bedroom luxury residence. The accommodation was fantastic, staff very friendly and helpful and food in the fusion and Italian restaurants excellent. The private beach was lovely and easily accessible.
Beautiful setting, with the hotel design really complementing the scenery. Rooms well designed and impeccably clean (we were upgraded to a private residence from a luxury family suite). The food was really varied and good quality at the Tholos buffet restaurant (we were staying Half Board), and we also had a fantastic meal at Blend, the a la carte Italian Fusion restaurant.
Overall the main thing we will remember though is the fantastic service from start to finish from all the staff at the hotel. It is impossible to single anyone out - they all made us feel incredibly welcome, were really helpful and always friendly.