Minos Beach Art hotel
What We Love
- The Jetsetter rate includes daily breakfast
- Located right at water's edge, on Mirabello Bay
- All bungalows feature a veranda overlooking the gardens or the sea
- READ MORE: A vacation guide to the Greek Islands
What To Know
- Free parking and WiFi
- Upgrade to half-board (daily lunch or dinner) for an additional $32 (€30) per person, per day (payable at the hotel)
- La Bouillabaisse Mediterranean Restaurant is open May through October
- Free WiFi
- Parking On Site
Right on Mirabello Bay, Minos Beach Art Hotel is a cluster of whitewashed bungalows set in lush grounds strewn with artwork. Originally built in 1961, the resort was transformed in 2007 by Greek architect Vassilis Rodatos, who took design inspiration from eastern Crete’s traditional fishing villages. The cube-like bungalows all come with air conditioning, large verandas overlooking the gardens or the sea and a Jacuzzi bathtub; pick the Private Pool Bungalow for secluded swimming. There’s a watersports center right on the bay for canoeing and diving, or hit the spa for an ayurvedic treatment. On the dining front, La Bouillabaisse serves Mediterranean dishes on a terrace overlooking the bay, while Terpsis offers Cretan lunches in the garden and Bacchus & Ambrosia serves a traditional breakfast spread.
In the Area
History buffs can wander through the mazelike Minoan ruins of Knossos or take a snorkeling or scuba trip to the underwater ruins of the lost city of Olous. Tuck into fresh Greek seafood on the docks at the Ferryman Taverna in Elounda, which has views of Spinalonga Island, or head to Plaka, one of Crete’s most charming fishing villages and a fine place for seaside dining in a family-style taverna.
How to Get There
We had a wonderful time, great bungalow, fantastic view, the art installations land and sea spectacular, as was the service, the staff were incredibly helpful polite, and smiley.
The food was great.
All helped my very good weather, and spectacular swimming in the blue blue sea.
We have just returned from 10 days at the Minos Beach Hotel. We chose a Superior Waterfront bungalow, which category of rooms is located in the original part of the hotel, right on the water, two minutes from the beach. The thing to be aware of, is that these bungalows run from no 61 right down to 92 or 93. We were originally shown to 92 and were extremely disappointed...the bungalow did not open directly onto the water and the loungers where situated at the side of the room, not directly on the waterfront. The room was dark and the view not an open sea view, rather a view of the Minos Palace Hotel over the sea channel....dark also, with no sun after 3pm. We asked to be moved and were given room 64, which couldn't have been more fabulous....right on the water with loungers right in front and a terrace with sun until 5.30 - not bad in October. I am surprised these two rooms are the same price....I also can't imagine why, given 64 and 65 were empty, we were shown to 92 in the first place? Anyway, once we had moved, we had the most fabulous holiday. The staff are second to none and the responsiveness to any query immediate and satisfactory. The cleaning staff were excellent and all the staff were very smiley and friendly at all times - really a high point. Food was plentiful and fine for such a large hotel - freshly cooked food available at each meal and huge amount of choice. Breakfast especially excellent - ask for a cappuccino or espresso at breakfast rather than the flask of horrible 'American style' coffee - there is no extra charge. Excellent swimming pool - 25m - with very stylish sunbeds and loungers. The hotel generally is very stylish and the underwater installations good fun...though it took me a while to find them! We had a good massage at the Spa, reasonably priced. Sleep quality was excellent, although our pillow choice menu did not appear until two days before departure and would have been useful to have earlier! Very quiet resort generally at this time of year as we were there before half term. Be aware - our room had a bed with stairs up, pretty dangerous at night...not for the elderly or infirm!! As someone else has mentioned in a previous review, the rooms are a little tired and the bathrooms do need a refurb but this in no way diminished our enjoyment of our stay as the location of our room was brilliant...never had better. I am hoping to return in May...though will book directly with the hotel to specify which room we want as it does make a significant difference. Highly recommend.
Location and the stunning surroundings of the public area are what make this hotel appealing. The hotel is wrapped around a long stretch of coast line meaning that there is plenty of room for guests to spread out, even when the hotel is full. What we found disappointing was the quality of the appointment of the sea view bungalow that we stayed in (no 60). The room was small, tired and dated - not what we expected from a ‘luxury boutique hotel’. The bathroom was distinctly 2* (I have added photos) - tiny corner shower, old fashioned tiling and a tatty vanity unit. The towels were thin, small and greying. There really were no luxuries in this room! When we arrived, we were told that fruit and water would be brought to the room - it never arrived. The food in the main buffet restaurant was mixed. On the first evening we both returned our main courses as they were poor. The staff were attentive and concerned and offered us alternatives though by then we had lost our appetites. They did give us a round of drinks on the house. If you are half board you can have €15 pp credit to spend in the other, superior restaurants. However, this remission wouldn’t even buy half of the starters in the Bouillabaisse fish restaurant! The staff were all friendly and helpful. I think we would possibly return but not book half board. There are lots of tavernas in walking distance and the hotel has many other options.
This was our second visit to the Minos Beach, which we booked directly with the hotel. This time we went for a Superior Waterfront Bungalow- well worth the extra expense, with a beautifully appointed suite waking us with the lilting sound of lapping water outside our door each morning. Aspects of the room were a little tired, indicating a need for renovation but overall did not detract from the experience. One of the beauties of this privately owned hotel is the unique aspect of its development along the shoreline. The property enjoyed a 98% occupancy during our stay, and yet the only impression gained of this was at breakfast. There is enough space and facilities to cater for all without a feeling of density.
We went for the half board option and were professionally cared for by Eleanis in the Ambrosia Restaurant, who had worked for the hotel for 18 years - such are the personal values of the Minos Beach owner, who even went to the trouble of providing us with a guide to Greek mythology through the interesting morning lecture by local literature teacher Mar
The evening set menu in the Ambrosia was extensive in its choices, but minimal in its portions, which was not a real issue given the number of courses on offer. On three evenings a week the choice was confined to the themed hot buffet served in the adjoining Bacchus restaurant, in which the extensive breakfast buffet was served. Whilst the hot buffet choices were good, the choice of desserts was exceptional.
Due to the time of year, we lost the sun on our private terrace by 3pm , and so migrated to the pool area, which was excellent in the late afternoon sun. Again, really friendly and professional service all round. We lunched most days at the seafront bar area, which was idyllic overlooking the clear blue sea of the bay.
Understated luxury and tranquility around the edge of the Mediterranean was the key aspect of this property. We met a couple who had returned here annually for the past 18 years - and I can see why. And to top it all we even saw one of our Strictly dancing heroines on a much relaxing on a much deserved break with her new husband.
We will certainly add to the growing numbers of “Repeaters “ especially at this time of year.
The location is unbeatable - Minos has exclusive, extensive grounds in a wonderful setting yet only a 15 minute walk from the lively town of Agios Nikolaos. A 20 metre walk from the bungalow and we were snorkelling in crystal clear waters. Nothing was too much trouble for the very professional and friendly staff. Maybe the accommodation needs a bit of refurbishment in places but not a major issue.